Long gone are the days when all you needed was a good sales team, a great product, or an innovative marketing strategy, and your revenue was rising, and your customers were content. Nowadays, customers want more. They deserve more. That’s why delivering value to your customers at every interaction to ensure they succeed is crucial.
Customer success focuses on improving customer outcomes keeping the customer experience in mind. A company succeeds when the customer succeeds, which means the entire company impacts the customer’s success. But how—as your company’s leader—can you make customer success a company-wide initiative? We got you covered! This guide will explain the CEO’s role in CS and how you can make it a company-wide effort.
Role of the CEO in Customer Success
The CEO is the company leader and is the most crucial driver of success. And one key decision you can make to achieve this is to have a designated CS leader and give them the resources they need to lead your company’s CS initiative effectively. While that’ll help ensure your CS department runs smoothly, it’s only the first step to reaching company-wide CS. From product and IT to sales and marketing, your entire company needs to shift its perspective on CS, not as a department but as a concept.
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What should the CEO do to make customer success a company-wide effort?
Here are some steps you can undertake to track, improve, and enhance customer success in the company.
Keep the Customer at the Core
Ensure the customer is the pivotal point of all conversations, decisions, and actions. For example, the sales team can ensure that they offer value to the customers while doing a product demo. And the marketing teams can focus on delivering realistic promises to your customers based on insight from the CS department. Customers at the core is a concept that needs to be made clear to streamline processes.
Make Every Team Accountable for CS KPIs
As the CEO, you already know the team responsible for handling customer accounts. So, have a leader attached to each account and make them responsible for accountability KPIs. A joint customer strategy with another team needs to mention the results and impact. You need to align these goals of customer success with initiatives and releases. Having the KPIs in mind can help deal with any diversions and challenges. The KPIs will be different for every team. For the product team, it could be decreasing product time-to-value. While for the finance department, the KPI will be to get the contract and legal processes sorted as soon as possible.
Keep Everyone in The Loop
All teams need to be on the same page concerning customer success, and every department should know where a customer is in their customer journey. The CEO can do this by ensuring that data shared between all team department leaders is streamlined and that there is utmost transparency in the workflow, which will flow down from the leaders to each team and throughout the company. If all departments are connected, the chances of missing information, incorrect details, licensing information, etc., are reduced.
Measure and Track Metrics
Peter Drucker, the knowledge exponent in management, once said, “If you cannot measure it, you cannot improve it.” This statement rings true in the customer success field. The CEO needs to be aware of all metrics and track them regularly, and you also need to measure the outcome of every customer-related decision.
Every department needs to keep the KPIs in mind and be accountable for the goals determined in the first stage. The metrics can differ for every team like NPS, CLV, CSAT, etc.
These metrics fit into the larger customer success picture that all C-Suite executives can access. You need to have all these numbers with targets in mind to ensure better results. The metrics are an essential aspect of any company, and it is necessary to ensure that they are measured, tracked, and worked upon.
Leverage the power of technology
To ensure customer success is a company-wide phenomenon, you and the C-suite need to consider utilizing customer success software. A customer success tool leverages the power of customer interactions to ensure customers get the value they signed up for. A good CS software, like SmartKarrot, will help you scale customer success operations and improve strategies. Then you’ll know the customer health and satisfaction score, implement product playbooks, and engineer actions based on customer interactions.
Ultimately, you want your customers to succeed. And as the CEO, to ensure this, you need to get everyone from your investors and executives to your workforce onboard.15
And with SmartKarrot, you and your executives can access insight into customer forecasting reports, customer health data, product usage trends, and more.
Shivani is a talented CS manager with the skillsets to elicit, scope and manage end-to-end B2B SaaS project delivery. She has a keen interest in depicting her learnings in customer success by writing resourceful blogs and articles.
Published April 06, 2022, Updated March 02, 2023