Customer Success

You’re not alone. You might be surprised to learn that startups everywhere struggle with hiring the right people and scaling their organizations. Read this and you’ll feel better. Promise.

Tech in Asia did a random survey of 50 entrepreneurs across a variety of industries and geographies asking what problems they faced at both the seed and growth stages. Among the diverse list of challenges reported, there were of course problems that all startups had in common. Guess what the number one problem was for both seed and growth stages. That’s right, staffing.

Regardless of the stage of growth, hiring and retaining employees is a universal struggle; and in the practice of customer success management, it’s an even tougher challenge for three reasons. Here’s why:

  1. The customer success industry is rather new so we’re not flush with experienced candidates.
  2. Even if your SaaS company is no longer in startup mode, your customer success team may be.
  3. Guidelines for growing and scaling a customer success organization are still being refined.

In a recent webinar on the topic of growing and scaling customer success organizations, we shared how to identify the best possible candidates by looking for these four attributes:

4 attributes of CSM

Chad Horenfeldt, customer success executive at Influitive, shares your pain. “I spend nearly a third of my time keeping my customer success talent pipelined filled,” he confessed. “Between keeping up with company growth, structuring the customer success team to better serve our customers and occasionally graduating one of our own to another department within Influitive, it’s become a huge part of my job.”

Many new customer success professionals are finding their way into the practice from fields like marketing and tech support…and for good reason. Those who bring a proactive, customer-driven approach to their work and a solid understanding of delivering value to customer expectations already possess two important qualifications for the role. And if there’s a grasp of the SaaS subscription model and how vital recurring revenue is to success and growth, all the better.

Here’s a customer success interview question that seems to be a favorite among hiring managers because responses reveal a lot about commitment to customer welfare:
Tell me about a time you went above and beyond for a customer.

Look for heroes when hiring. Customer Success leaders need devoted, customer-focused practitioners who care that things go right so that customers see value and stay. With a few solid customer success hires, you’ll build a team committed to your customers and your company in no time. See? It’s a little less lonely already.