Scaling CS teams and CS Models


Scaling Customer Success in (any) organization is not a simple task. It requires the right combination of technology, people, and processes to hit the mark. For example, how do you manage to keep up with rocketship growth and make sure you have a team and process around this to scale effectively?

In this episode, our host Anika Zubair chats with Jeff Heckler, Director of CS Solutions at MarketSource (former Global Head of CS at Pipedrive) about scaling CS teams and CS models.

Jeff Heckler is a Senior Customer Success Leader with over 20 years of leading Customer Success, Professional Services, and customer-facing revenue teams. Jeff has been a leader in five (5) global leading enterprise companies, four (4) bootstrapped start-ups, three (3) exits, two (2) IPOs, and one (1) unicorn.

Playing catch-up in CS is not unusual for today's leaders. The global software company Pipedrive was around for a decade before Jeff joined. Yet, the CS department was fairly new and needed to scale up quickly to keep up with the extreme growth. So, what are the first things you need to tackle as a CS leader when playing catch up?

“Start with looking for places that you can have an impact that are either not being served or are terribly underserved. Maximize and optimize what you already have. And the last thing, getting CS ops running efficiently. A lot of people would say that you need CS ops after six to eight years. I would say zero to one. Without operations you cannot scale.”

Capacity planning to scale CS and build CS models is far from easy. It requires a lot of planning and ways of divvying up the work to really make sure each person handles a different part of the customer journey. And it all breaks down into different roles.

“Firstly, what are the current CSM teams able to handle, and then building in what your management levels need to be from there. At the same time you're looking at ops. How deep is your tech stack? What does your CS platform look like? You also have to look at product for a hyper growth organization. Your product will probably develop, so what are the future training needs so your team can handle that consumption.”

Jeff believes that 2022 is the year of CS and Marketing to be owned by Operations and run and founded by CS. Customer communication engagement is the only way to stay on top as your CS teams are scaling. CS usually works very closely with product and sales, but what about marketing?

“I will say customer marketing owned and operated by CS is the next deal.”

Listen now to the full conversation with Jeff and Anika about scaling CS teams and CS models.

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