by Tracey Wik / December 5, 2019
You’re looking to set up your customer success management team and aren’t sure where to start. You’re completely aware of how important these roles are to the success of your business and yet, you wonder, “Who do I hire for these roles?” Maybe you’re wondering, how to turn service reps or salespeople into customer success people, or how to change the profile to get the folks in this role to perform better. Or perhaps you already have one or two people in this role and they’re doing great, but it feels a little disjointed or they could be doing a more intentional job.
In our discussions with clients, most of them echo the sentiment that the customer success manager is a difficult role to fill. A lot of businesses, regardless of size, are looking at the people in front of them and trying to figure out how to make the most of their talents. They’d love to take the talent they have and morph their people into customer success management superstars.
Looking for the purple unicorn
When many businesses are looking for the perfect fit for this customer success role, I like to say they’re looking for a purple unicorn. In our work with clients, we unpack what it means for them to find that purple unicorn.
We have teams complete GrowthPlay’s Chally Assessment, and from that data, we get to better understand which folks in the organization demonstrate the top skills that are needed to be an effective customer success manager.
Sometimes, we find that some people have some of that raw drive and capacity to do what we were looking for and some don’t. This ends up being a valuable exercise to help businesses figure out who on the team could be coached into the role. And even more, who would really love to do this work and thrive.
When you have somebody who might align with the role you’re looking to fill, you can further assess if they’re a great candidate by uncovering their innate capabilities. Will the work they’ll do make them happy?
Because when we can line up our talent with what brings them joy and the roles we’re seeking to shape, is when we create the best results for everyone all around.
Take curiosity for one – when an employee is naturally curious about a particular type of problem or relationship, they’ll be able to quickly build rapport and have a greater impact.
If the candidate will find joy in the work they do each day, they’ll excel at the role, they’ll be able to increase customer retention, and the organization will continue to grow.
Combining your talent data with customer feedback
Armed with the data of who loves to do what roles and who will be most likely to excel, we can then look to customer feedback. When customer feedback is the highest and where we find the highest retention rates, we can line this up to confirm our assessment data of the innate strengths of our people.
When we can align these two powerful data points, we get to place our employees into roles that they’ll be more likely to enjoy because it will feel natural to them, they excel, and our customers get the most value.
This data will not only help you find the right people and who will be coachable around these behaviors but confirm where you’ll need to focus employee training in the future.
In this purpose-driven economy, it’s important to unpack this equation for yourself in your customer success organization. Sure, you can go with your gut, but it’s so much more powerful when you can combine this with data.
At the end of the day, we’re trying to create something better together. And every interaction serves as an opportunity to dig deeper into what our clients want. We believe in data analysis to inform our decisions. And what’s great about customer success right now is that there are more opportunities to align around it.
To learn more about Customer Success management read our blog: “Customer Success Management: Inside a Noisy Market”