Just like today’s business environment is unrecognizable compared to a decade ago, customer expectations have also changed. For many organizations, dedicated sales and support teams are no longer enough to provide customers with the kind of service they expect. Customer success teams also play an important role in delivering a quality customer experience.
ISC’s team of Customer Success Recruiters will take a closer look at how a customer success team works—and how to build it right:
More Than Just Support
It’s easy to see a customer success team as an extension of the company’s support team, but the reality is quite different. A customer success team augments the value that a support team can deliver, without being a part of it.
It’s necessary to define the role of a customer success team separately from other teams in similar positions. Being perceived as the ‘reserve’ support team has its disadvantages. If customers are only ever approaching the success team for help with one-off issues, there’ll be no long-term relationships that are vital for business.
If customers are only ever approaching the success team for help with one-off issues, there’ll be no long-term relationships that are vital for business.
There’s some similarity between the roles played by sales staff and a customer success team. Both help a company retain its current customers and help potential customers discover what a company has to offer.
Relationship-building is also something that the sales and customer success teams can both be reasonably expected to do. However, customer success teams shouldn’t be bound to quotas.
For one, customer success cannot be easily quantified into numbers—such as orders placed or services purchased—the way the work of a sales team can. Customer success is often self-evident.
3 Tips to Build an Effective Customer Success Team
Here are three tips for building an effective customer success team:
1. Define the Team’s Mission
The definition of customer success can vary across sectors, as well as industries. A customer success team’s mission should grow from the company’s mission. Its purpose and role in a company can be refined by soliciting feedback from all stakeholders.
A clearly defined mission will also help prevent any overlap between responsibilities.
2. Don’t Expect Answers Right Away
Setting up a new team is a lot like getting a startup off the ground. You won’t immediately know what needs to be done and the best way to do it, prior to taking a good look at your current set-up and ideally querying customers on what they would like to see to make things ever better. There should be a lot of active listening & learning involved.
Paying attention to customer needs and questions can help you build a framework to follow for most customers. As you figure out what works and what doesn’t, fine-tune the framework accordingly. Over time, this will result in a repeatable framework that’s proven to work and can be scaled as needed.
3. Putting Customers First
Rather than becoming bogged down by processes and protocols, learn to put your customers first for better results. Working closely with the sales and product teams will help the customer success team figure out what needs to be done and where there is room for improvement.
The more understanding a customer success team can gain of their customers’ problems, the better solutions they’ll offer.
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Ann Zaslow-Rethaber is President of International Search Consultants and can be reached at 888-866-7276 or .
Kara Onorato is Director of Recruiting for ISC and can be reached at 877-316-6249 or at .