In the world of customer success, we find ourselves speaking with our customers starting off by asking one big question, “What are your goals.”
This singular question is the basis of the partnership between customer success and client. By understanding the customer’s goals, we are able to create a strategy to achieve this, whether it be through metrics, education plans, resources, etc. Without asking this question, we are not able to fully understand our customer’s needs and know what we can do to drive success. The more I hear this question, the more I wonder, what are we doing as professionals to understand our goals, whether it be professional or personal?
Something that keeps popping up in my mind is RuPaul ending every episode of Drag Race saying, “If you don’t love yourself how in the hell you gonna love somebody else”. This should be the mantra of all customer success professionals. We are advisors. We are experts. We are strategists. In order to show this, we must practice it. If not, it’s as if we are gym trainers yelling at someone to do 100 box jumps while eating a donut. How can I expect to help my clients be successful in their needs, create S.M.A.R.T. goals and track how they are pacing if I’m not looking at myself in the same way?
The beginning of the year is a time we often sit and create New Year’s Resolutions, but according to Business Insider, 80% of these goals are dropped by the second week of February.
It’s because we are not holding ourselves to the same standards we hold our customers. I would never get on a call with a customer to understand their goals, needs, and reasons for the investment to end with “well that all sounds great good luck with getting there!” This doesn’t set them up for success.
Success comes from first understanding the goals, then getting an understanding of their structure, how things work internally, what other products and processes are in place in order to create a way of adding our specific products and tools into their workflow. We don’t expect our customers to completely change their processes completely, but our resolutions have us going from binge-watching RuPaul one day to visiting a CrossFit gym twice a day to hit our goal of looking at Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. For us to accomplish our goals, we must reflect on ourselves. What does a typical day look like (your workflow)? How are you developing yourself currently to get that promotion (your other products and tools)?
The whole purpose of creating goals is to better ourselves (the same goes for our customers), so the more we have a full understanding of not only what we want to accomplish, but who we are, how we best function, what is already in place, we can then create strategies to enhance each of these areas, allowing us to be our best selves. And once we can be our best selves, we can be our best selves for customers.