#Seek2Serve Spotlight: Macy’s

Serving clients and colleagues is central to who Mereo is. Because of this, we regularly spotlight organizations and individuals taking customer service to the next level. Through this we hope to learn from and applaud those who are making this counter-cultural way of business central to what they do.


A 160-year-old company doesn’t survive the ever-evolving marketplace by focusing its efforts on earning an easy buck — it listens and responds to its customers’ wants and needs. It Seeks to Serve™.

And Macy’s department store does just that. Back in 1858 Rowland Hussey Macy began a retail tradition of serving his customers. Through the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and more, he developed a world-renowned brand that relies on beloved tradition, wide-ranging products and quality items. What started as a dry goods store has become one of the world’s largest retailers.

Photograph courtesy of Macy’s (1940’s)

Yasir Anwar, now Macy’s Senior Vice President and Head of Digital Technology, carries on that tradition. Anwar has been leading Macy’s through a digital transformation.

As he has worked with his team to keep Macy’s at the top of people’s minds as both a brick-and-mortar department store retailer and an online retailer, he’s developed a customer-centric approach.

When he and his team try something new, they bring the customer into the process first. They don’t “innovate in isolation,” because Anwar realizes he and other senior leaders don’t have crystal balls to guide them — but the customer can tell him outright through opinions and signals if something will or will not work.

“When we build features and experiences for the customer, we do it with the customer and we go into detail. We focus on chiseling or shaping our products purely based on customer signals and customer feedback,” Anwar said in a recent Forbes article.

Anwar also re-organized his team to align with the customer’s journey, to create a better customer experience. He created a domain concept in which the domains act as the customer cycle: a discovery domain, a selection domain, a purchase and delivery domain, a customer management domain, a marketing domain, and other foundational domains. Through this domain concept, he and his team observe key performance indicators and metrics, and react accordingly.

By seeking to serve, Anwar and his fellow Macy’s leaders support their customers, and their customers naturally find the purchase stage of their journey more often because of it.

How has your organization used innovation and technology to better serve its customers? Just because you don’t see customers face-to-face in a digital atmosphere doesn’t mean you shouldn’t involve them in the creation of the delivery platform. In our experience, serving customers to the best of our ability, and simply putting them first always precedes success.

Be sure to check out Jay’s post on how to discover and solve your prospects’ pain points — allowing you to gather customer insights before you take action.

Sources: http://www.forbes.com/sites/peterhigh/2016/09/26/macys-digital-develops-customer-first-culture-and-org-structure/2/#1153bef78e3a; http://www.visitmacysusa.com/blog/history-macys-humble-beginnings-stunning-success