We all know working with customers is crucial for our success as a business. They are a top priority – and need care. In the world of cloud, as you move your business model to a recurrent revenue business model, license & sales income turn to subscription revenue, and over the years – many of the top vendors and innovators in the cloud industry have formed the role as a Customer Success Manager (CSM). The CSM acts as a lifetime account manager, who’s purpose is to regularly touch base with the customer; understand the current business environment – and understand what opportunities present in the usage of your services within the client. Often measured on account growth, support the top accounts to become better advocates & references, account retention and reduction of churn.
A role I highly encourage any company to think about. If you are a business leader today, and do not think about the experience you deliver for your customers. Rethink.
But I want to take a step back, as I said customers are “a top priority”. There is another much more important priority.
As you move forward with your lifecycle management strategy; aligning customers to the experience of working with your company – one element becomes a critical factor. Motivated staff. I too often see high scale VPs or CEOs who target the “old school” of people management, and our HR departments today have become “hidden resources” or “human resistance”. Recruitment, motivation and talent development is outsourced to the “expert” and HR has become a cleaning agency for the remaining tasks. You need to rethink.
As your customers meet your employees – demotivated, without purpose and a sight to their carrier progression – the same employees you try to align to your new “customer experience economy” will service. And trust me;
People deal with people
This is why I want to encourage you to rebrand your HR – insource your capabilities and look to implement the Human Success Manager (HSM) role. The HSM acts the same way as the CSM, but targeting your internal organization. Measured on employee growth, support the top performers to become better advocates & references, talent retention and reduction of churn in staff. Rethink the old skip-level engagement system; your weekly 1:1 which turn into coffee updates on the football match. Your teams of HSMs would have a target to grow talent, retain the motivation and move your people to the next stage.
Think about what would happen if you develop your employees and they leave for a better carrier; branding your company as a strong and great place to work. And then consider the opposite. You do not development and they stay.
Your creditors are your biggest responsibility. Your investors are your biggest concern. Shareholder value is your biggest focus. Your employees are your best asset.