What does Customer Success mean to you?
I was recently asked what Customer Success means to me. Before answering, my thoughts went directly to the word ‘kindness.’ Curious thing, since Customer Success is said to be all about business, metrics, value proposition, and customer satisfaction. Right?
So, I started thinking: we are all someone's customer and someone's provider simultaneously. Beginning to put ourselves in the customer's shoes - with awareness - could give us the chance to understand better - more subjective or objective, depending on how we're built - what our customers expect from us. So from a customer's perspective, first of all, I want to be treated with kindness.
That's when it hit me: sometimes, in our hurry to reach targets and bring value to our customers from a business perspective, we tend to forget that our customers are, before anything else, humans. And so are we. Good days, bad days, good or bad moods, challenging or desperate situations at a personal level are affecting every one of us – all these leave a mark on each interaction we have if we are too overwhelmed to be able to separate contexts: personal and business.
Of all the learnings I’ve gathered in my 13 years of interacting with customers in different roles and industries, I use one piece of knowledge to define what Customer Success means to me. To me, Customer Success means being able to run towards reaching both your customers' and your targets while holding your customers' hands on your shared way to success. It's a partnership, but it always starts with the human connection.
So, maybe after everything we've all been through in the past years, it's time to change our approach to reach out to (each other and) our customers: put kindness, availability, humanity, understanding, empathy, and openness first. Business comes second. For me, that's the recipe to (customer) success.