The Foundation of Customer Success

After helping to create a number of high-performing customer success organizations I’ve narrowed down the success of these teams and these companies (as customer success is more than a team) to two core elements: trust and value.

There are many different ways that you can dissect and break down the term “customer success” but I’ve found that when customers trust you, they are more open to listening to you and working to achieve value from your product. When customers have found value from your product, they will develop a higher degree of trust for you.

I then take this equation a step further by including the CS team as a second component. We can talk about the importance of technology and how the entire company needs to be focused on customer success all we want but if the core customer success team isn’t a high performing team, your customer success strategy won’t get very far.

Your customer success team needs to trust each other and trust the CS leader. When that happens they will create more value for your customers and for themselves. In a high trust environment, your customer success team will be more engaged and more productive. When you focus on how you can deliver value for your team and their careers, you will build a higher level of trust.

This simple customer success equation has taken me many years to learn. I’ve had many successes where I’ve created high trust/value environments and I’ve also had my share of experiences where I’ve eroded trust both with customers and my team. These situations have helped me grow as a person and as a leader and I wanted to share this with you. The world of customer success is a difficult one but together we can decode the CS formula that can make customer success successful and a more established discipline.

Customer Success = Trust + Value

I’ve created this summary that I hope you find useful. I will break down this concept more in future posts.

I’ve also expounded more on this theory on “The Jasons” podcast called: Building & Using Trust to Drive Success. Have a listen and let me know your thoughts. Do you agree or disagree? What do you feel is missing? What has been your experience?

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