In the past decade there has been a boom of new tech company startups across the UK and Europe. This growth in startup businesses has indirectly led to the growth of Customer Success. There are a lot of growing pains as you grow from a startup to a scaleup, so how do you manage your Customer Success team during this transition?
In this Podcast our host Anika Zubair speaks with Lauren Cumming, Head of Customer Success at Fixflo, a property maintenance software solution. Lauren moved to London from New Zealand and has 6 years’ experience in Customer Success, holding Customer Success roles at SparkUp, DeskPro, and RotaGeek. Having experienced some of the unique challenges that come with working in startup environments and the growth of Fixflo from startup to scaleup, Lauren shares her tips and tricks on managing and scaling a Customer Success team throughout this transition.
Lauren explains the key difference between a startup and scaleup. In the scaleup phase, your business has a product market fit and a proven sales funnel. You know who your customers are, where to find them, and what and how you sell. No need to pivot to gain new customers. The model is proven and the mission now is to build a repeatable, scalable business model.
As Lauren has only ever worked in tech startups and only within Customer Success, it was a natural progression for her to become the Head of Customer Success at Fixflo. Her advice to others wanting to climb the ladder, is that you have to have the grit and desire to get stuck in and be willing to build the Customer Success org from the ground up. This enables you to pick up a lot of knowledge and skills and ultimately makes you adaptable and resilient.
Four key changes that happen during the transition from startup to scaleup, firstly, the nature of the business will change as you scale, so it needs more structure and processes in place. Secondly, the type of people you hire in your team will change as roles become more specialised and focused. Thirdly, you need to readjust the way you work and become data driven as opposed to just relying on your intuition. Finally, there's an emotional change to the role as the highs and lows will be different.
From a leadership perspective, Lauren would advise that you effectively delegate and learn how to give up control. Giving the opportunities to someone else frees up your time and enables the company to scale.
Lauren has a wealth of knowledge to share with us about how to establish Customer Success at a startup and also how to maintain a Customer Success org while a business scales up. Listen now for the full discussion.