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Meet 2022’s leading women leaders and influencers in customer success as we celebrate their inspiring achievements this International Women’s Day.
In celebration of International Women’s Day, we are honored to present our Top 50 Women Leaders in Customer Success to Follow list for 2022, celebrating 50 influential women leaders and their inspiring stories of strength and success.
While their reputations speak for themselves, this list is our modest tribute to these remarkable ladies who have stood out as role models breaking new ground, blazing a trail, and inspiring many others along the way.
Please note that this is by no means an exhaustive list, nor is it in any particular order. Who else would you nominate? Please tell us in the comments!
Now get ready to be inspired as we shine a spotlight on these powerful women and how their achievements are shaping the industry.
An exceptional thought leader and a brilliant coach to thousands of executives, Allison Pickens, is a leading expert on recurring revenue growth. Her portfolio is gilded with leadership roles like board director, investor, COO, and P&L owner. An alumna of Yale and Stanford, Allison has contributed to the Customer Success industry as the COO of Gainsight, a prominent customer success company, and a 1B USD unicorn.
She has also hosted the very successful Customer Success Podcast and written the informative book called ‘The Customer Success Economy.’ Her blog posts continue to serve as a valuable resource for people who seek to understand and master customer success processes.
A star in the world of Customer Success, Amarachi Ogueji is known for her exceptional skills in retaining B2B and B2C SaaS clients. Her diverse yet unique skills include customer life cycle optimization from pre-sales. In the revenue-centric SaaS world, Amarachi strives to provide customers with the highest value at every step of their customer journey.
Anika Zubair is a Customer Success leader working with inSided, a customer success community platform, as Vice President of Customer Success. Focused on customer happiness, Anika is passionate about developing and maintaining good relationships with customers. She has helped several companies grow and scale their business by developing streamlined customer success processes and successful customer retention strategies.
A highly celebrated, award-winning, successful Customer Success Strategist, Anita Toth describes herself as a churn-crusher whose primary focus is to decrease the attrition rate of businesses. Anita leads a team that dives into the customer insights of B2B SaaS clients and extracts actionable information from it. They then help the clients develop a customer-centric business strategy that increases customer loyalty and retention.
Annette Franz is the Founder and CEO of CX Journey Inc. With over 30 years in the industry, Annette is a professional coach, consultant, customer journey mapping facilitator, thought leader, and influencer. Also, Annette is a distinguished customer success author who has written two books, ‘Customer Understanding: Three Ways Put the “Customer” in Customer Experience’ and ‘Built to Win: Designing a Customer-Centric Culture That Drives Value for Your Business.’
An Award-Winning Customer Success Professional, Asha Patel is known for leading teams and delivering strategic plans for improving the customer experience in a company. She is a coach who focuses on personal development, relationship building, success planning, customer engagement and retention, and customer journey. Currently, she’s the Customer Success and Customer Support Manager at Ascent Cloud, Ashna has experience of over 7+ years in Customer Success and Account Management.
Bhavika Kochhar is an Enterprise Customer Success Manager, Americas, at Algonomy. She has over six years of experience in the Customer Success Industry. With a focus on community building, Bhavika is an advisor and mentor who drives customer success wherever she goes. An all-rounder, Bhavika also hosts her chat show and is a founder at CS Ladies.
Caroline Andreola is a Client Success Strategy professional with product development, product marketing, commercial planning, customer success, and project management skills to name a few. After beginning her career as a Marketing intern at the Rafain Palace Hotel & Convention Center, she is now a Customer Success Strategy Specialist at Ambev. Caroline was also named one of the Top 100 Customer Success Strategists for 2020-2021.
Catherine Blackmore is a thought leader, influencer, and industry expert with an experience of over 20 years in the Customer Success sector. Her various books, blogs, articles, and whitepapers have helped many people understand the program, planning, and operational structure of Customer Success Organizations. One of her much deserving achievements is that she is rated one of the top 50 influencers to follow in the Customer Success industry.
Christina Crawford is the CEO of LogicMonitor. Before joining LogicMonitor, Christina worked for Slack leading the Global Customer Success and Services team, and she helped the company scale from $90 million to $1 billion annual revenue. Christina has had a diverse range of professional experience with CEO, president, board member, and strategic advisor under her portfolio.
Dana Alvarenga is currently the Vice President of Customer Experience at SlapFive: Customer Marketing and the creator and host of the CustomerXTherapy Podcast. Dana is also a founding member of CS Insider. She has acquired numerous skills through her years of experience, including account management, business development, lead generation, contract negotiation, project implementation, partner engagement, and customer retention.
Dana Soza Customer Solutions CEO, is one of the most prominent and revered Customer Success professionals in California, US. She is a growth leader who passionately follows the human-first approach. An advocate for inclusion and diversity, Dana is proficient in scaling businesses with the help of customer acquisition and retention. A leader, speaker, consultant, coach, and trainer, Dana’s most salient qualities include organizational gaps analysis, discovery, and problem-solving.
Daphne Lopes is a Customer Success leader with experience with operations, product management, and professional services (SaaS and Payments). Since beginning her career as a Product Merchandiser at Ted Baker, she has held numerous different professional roles and is now a Senior Success Manager for HubSpot. She is also a member of the invite-only Founders of the Future entrepreneurial community.
A prolific leader in the Customer Success industry, Diana De Jesus knows where her expertise lies, and she isn’t afraid to own it. She is a Customer Success Manager Strategist at Catalyst Software who helps several companies retain and satisfy their customers. In turn, Diana helps her clients’ businesses grow. Diana also co-created the ‘Open Book of Customer Success,’ a free workspace with all the resources to help Customer Success professionals.
An alumnus of The University of Texas at Austin, Disha Gosalia is a technical executive with various specialties such as customer advocacy, team building and mentoring, customer service management, escalations management, customer adoption, metrics analysis, training, staff development, and much more. Disha is currently the Vice President of Customer Success at Freshworks and has over 12 years of experience in Technical Support Leadership and Customer Management.
A renowned influencer, Customer Success thought leader, and strategist, Donna Weber has literally written the book on customer onboarding: Onboarding Matters. Donna is known for helping high-growth companies acquire and retain loyal, happy, and satisfied customers.
Organizations that collaborate with Donna have shown a decrease in their customer first value times, an increase in customer lifetime value, and an overall reduction in implementation time, costs, and product usage. Donna has successfully helped many companies scale their Customer-Success growth and reap the benefits of the if the customer wins, the company wins phenomenon.
A leader who believes in ‘paving a path forward no matter the odds,’ Ellie Wu is a Customer Experience professional, board advisor, engagement expert, speaker, and author. Currently, she is the Vice President, Sales and Customer Success Center of Excellence at Insight Partners.
Ellie is passionate about developing exceptional customer experiences through Customer Success best practices. She has led several high-tech companies to build a customer-centric business culture. Her leadership is revered by companies going through transitionary phases and well-established firms.
The founder of Growth Molecules, a management consulting firm, Emilia D’Anzica, is a renowned management consultant, educator, speaker, author, and board advisor. She helps companies achieve scalable growth and helps them curate customer-centric programs, including onboarding, advocacy, adoption, and renewals. Her areas of expertise span from company growth through tailored customer success programs across renewals, voice-of-customer, operations, customer education, etc., to career growth through individual coaching and mentoring. Emilia has won several accolades for her role in the Customer Success industry, including our ‘Top 50 Customer Success Influencers 2022’ list.
The Vice President of Customer Success at Proton, Emily Garza, is a passionate, customer-focused strategist driven to prove customers with impactful and valuable experiences. She has built numerous teams from scratch and is the creator of ValueCSwithEmily.com, a platform where she shares her CS journey insights and learning for the benefit of CS enthusiasts.
A changemaker, a leader, and an engineer at the core, Erika Villarreal is a trailblazer in the Customer Success field. She is the co-founder of ePesos, which required her to build the Customer Success team from scratch.
Erika is a person who heavily uses and encourages the use of processes and systems. She likes to crunch numbers as much as she likes to lead.
Gemma Cipriance-Espineira is the Chief Customer Officer at Chili Piper. She started building and leading teams at 25, and at just 27, she became the Vice President of Customer Success at an organization. Gemma has always been an achiever, and her success can be attributed to her passion for learning and connecting with others.
Irene Lefton is the Vice President of Customer Success at Mentor Cloud, a Customer Success-driven growth platform that helps businesses scale up. Irene is best known for building and executing successful customer strategies, cross-functional collaboration with customer-facing departments, creating a customer-centric company culture, and more customer-focused results. Irene is also diversifying her work portfolio by working on a book called “Who Speaks for the Customer.”
A pioneer in Customer Success methodologies, Irit Eizips, has constantly worked towards shaping the Customer Success landscape into its best version. She is the CEO of CSM Practise, an international customer success management consulting company. Irit has significantly contributed to the implementation of customer success best practices, value creation for customers, and customer success technology solutions. Hence, it’s no wonder that she has been continually voted the top Customer Success strategist since 2013.
Jan Young is a Customer Success leader who believes that businesses cannot be successful without the customers being successful first. Currently, she is working as a Senior Consultant with The Success League, a consulting company that helps businesses develop, plan and scale their customer success teams. A customer success strategist, mentor, coach, and trainer, Jan Young is also a community builder who worked as a solopreneur for five years and helped various start-ups scale their Customer Success journeys.
A thought leader with a vision, Jeanne Bless leads organizations to growth and success through unique business practices, courage, and experience. Jeanne is known worldwide for transforming businesses into thriving enterprises, resulting in customer-centric growth.
A mentor and coach to over 20,000 leaders, Jeanne’s Customer Success practices are practically tested and accepted worldwide. Bliss is the author of 4 best-selling books on experience and leadership that serve as a guidebook for CX professionals. Her 5-Competencies for customer-centric growth have been celebrated and adopted by professionals across the globe. A pioneer in the field of Customer Success, Bliss is known by many as the “godmother of customer experience.”
Jennifer Chiang, an alumnus of Georgetown University, is currently the Head of Customer Success at Seso Inc. Since beginning her career as an intern at The White House, she has acquired various skills such as customer service, community outreach, and research. Jennifer is also the author of ‘The Startup’s Guide to Customer Success,’ rated one of the Top 10 Customer Success books by CSM Practice and EGlobalis.
Julie Hogan is the Vice President of Customer Success and Strategy at Toast, an enterprise dedicated to empowering the restaurant community to build teams and achieve success. A leader who loves her customers and employees, Julie Hogan believes that relationships are the root of all growth.
A professional known for building teams and scaling restaurant businesses, Julie is also someone who believes in giving back to society. She is involved with Cycle for Survival and often mentors aspiring Customer Success professionals.
Kate Forgione is a passionate Customer Success leader and is currently the Director of Customer Success for Morressier. She is also the founder and former CEO of the Customer Success Network, the first community for customer success managers in the EMEA region. Through Kate’s years of industry experience, she has acquired skills pertaining to change management, stakeholder management, organizational design, management consulting, and more.
Powered by over 15 years of industry experience, Kellie Capote is currently the Chief Customer Officer of Gainsight. Since beginning her career as a Sales Consultant at Ferguson Enterprises, Kellie has acquired cross-functional collaboration, customer success, account management, channel development, customer experience, presentation, and negotiation skills among others. Kellie has a proven track record of increasing organizational customer retention, account growth, and building advisor relationships.
A customer success thought leader and subject matter expert, Keri Keeling is a naturally gifted individual who has built and delivered customer success organizations and processes for various global technology leaders such as VMware, Juniper Networks, and Oracle. Her skills are versatile as she has worked with both domestic and international firms. She has experience working with high-growth MNCs as well as start-ups.
An innovative leader in the Customer Success and Customer Experience fields, Kia Puhm is a professional with over 26 years of experience in scaling businesses and managing strategic corporate initiatives. She guides organizations through their transition periods and transforms them into their most customer-centric, disciplined, and profitable versions. An engineer by profession, Kia has an extensive record of developing and applying exceptional business practices that yield verifiably great results within start-up, transformational, and turn-around business environments.
A leader best known for her experience in developing, building, scaling, and revolutionizing Customer Success enterprises, Kristi Faltorusso is an award-winning Customer Success professional. In the last ten years, Kristi has helped several organizations reshape their Customer Success methodology resulting in increased customer loyalty, retention, and advocacy.
Kristi has worked with several big names like BrightEdge, Sisense, Intellishift, and BetterCloud. Presently, she is serving as the Vice President of Customer Success at ClientSuccess. Her most innovative achievement, thus far, can be said to be her content experience portal, Keeping CS Simple.
Kristen Hayer is the Founder and CEO of The Success League, a consulting firm that helps companies plan, develop and scale their Customer Success teams. In the last two decades, she has created and led several recognized Customer Success, Sales, and Marketing teams.
Through her work, Kristen has defined and showcased how one can design optimal customer journeys, train teams, build playbooks, and develop customer success goals efficiently. Her creative pursuits include hosting Transforming Experiences in Customer Success and Reading For Success where she interviews Customer Success leaders and reviews resources for the CS community, respectfully.
A pioneer in Customer Success, Lauren Costella is a woman who brings about change wherever it’s needed. She believes that a business can only flourish if the customers are happy. Hence her passion is to transform every business into a customer-centric place where customer satisfaction reigns. Lauren is the Vice President of Customer Success at Goodtime, an automated interview scheduling software. As a communicator, strategist, and leader, Lauren has been an agent of growth and success to many businesses.
The Chief Customer Officer of Swiftly Incorporation, Maranda Dziekonski, is a Customer Success Leader who is proficient in setting up the right teams, processes, and infrastructure that lead to the accelerated growth of companies. With over twenty years of experience in the Customer Success field, Maranda has worked with both multinational organizations and middle-stage startups. She is a thought leader and the host of the ‘There to Here” podcast.
Marija Skobe-Pilley is a woman of music that found her passion in the tech industry. Currently, the Head of Customer Success, EMEA at ClickUp, Marija, understands the value of the human touch in business. Her mission is to help customers get their desired value and results through SaaS solutions and succeed. An experienced CS professional, Marija is efficient in her onboarding knowledge, implementing SaaS solutions, mapping the customer journey, product training, and designing the Customer Success Operations systems.
An exemplar leader in the Customer Success and Customer Experience Sector, Mary Poppen is a CCO, strategist, advisor, author, speaker, CX & EX Futurist, and female executive mentor. Currently holding the office of Chief Strategy and Customer Officer at Involve.ai, Mary is a thought leader who loves sharing best practices, experiences, and tricks to help others learn about the Customer Success landscape.
Megan Bowen is a leader who creates success and brings about such conditions for her team, colleagues, and customers so that in the end, everyone wins. Currently working as the Chief Operating Officer of Refine Labs, this problem-solver believes in the human-first leadership approach.
Megan is a customer advocate who believes in an empathetic approach to leadership. She handles everything in the B2B SaaS sector and has experience with early-stage enterprises and established companies.
Melinda Gonzalez is a Customer Success strategist with over twenty years of experience in the Customer Success and Customer Experience field. Melinda worked with Salesforce before launching her venture MGCX Advisors, a customer success consulting company that helped firms by offering services like Customer Journey Mapping, Voice of Customer, and Customer Success Management Strategy. Currently, Melinda is working as the Vice President of Customer Success at Pendo.
A unique and distinctive leader in the Customer Success field, Morika Georgieva is a professional who has derived knowledge from areas like data science and psychology to design, build and lead a Customer Success organization from the ground up. Currently, Morika works at Permutive as a Customer Success, EMEA Manager. A multi-talented individual, Morika’s experience spans from operationalizing and evangelizing customer success to building CS processes to training, developing, and coaching CS teams.
Rachel Provan is a global customer success and engagement leader with proven expertise in account development and growth, client relationship management, operations management, financial reporting, strategic planning, and more. Rachel has held numerous positions, including Director of Customer Success at Doodle. Rachel is also a contributing freelance writer at CS Insider.
Rebecca Nerad is a Customer Success professional who is currently the Vice President of Customer Success at E2open. Rebecca is also a member of Chief, a private network designed to help drive women into leadership roles. Through her years of experience, Rebecca has acquired valuable skills such as cross-functional team leadership, supply chain management, software implementation, business analysis, brand development, customer acquisition and retention, change management, and much more.
Ronni Gaun, the Customer Success, Enterprise, and Finserv Team Lead at Zoom, has served various customer types and industry verticals throughout her career. She has helped scale both start-ups and global enterprises.
Ronni is a highly skilled leader who has reduced churn, increased customer retention and increased upsell opportunities. Ronni continues to help businesses scale up with the help of optimized customer success processes.
Sana Farooq is currently the Director of Customer Success for FloQast. She is also an Advisory Board Member of Customer Experience at UC Irvine and a member of Gain Grow Retain, a community for customer success leaders. Through her nine years of industry experience, Sana has acquired strategic planning, product development, marketing communication, workflow management, and strategy skills.
A highly acclaimed Customer Success evangelist and change agent, Shari Srebnick is an extremely motivated, entrepreneurial Customer Success leader. After beginning her career as an Account Executive at the ‘Nine West Footwear Corporation,’ she has acquired valuable experience in various business functions such as account management, client development, consultancy, customer success coaching, and much more. Shari is currently the Head of Client Success in the United States for Searchmetrics and a member of the CSPI Advisory Council.
Star Hofer is the Vice President of Customer Success at PartnerStack. She has over eighteen years of experience in handling SaaS implementations. Having worked in various roles in the SaaS solutions industry, including project management, customer success, consulting, etc., Star Hofer understands the business’ intricacies and complexities. She uses her diverse experience to help organizations scale their operations systematically.
Sue Kirn Morris is the Vice President of Global Customer Success and Support at Github. She is an Advisory Group Member for Execs in The Know. A winner of several awards and accolades, Sue has worked with a few of the biggest tech companies like Microsoft, Vodaphone, and Caudwell Group.
A leader, community builder, and successful entrepreneur, Sue Nabeth Moore believes in evolving Customer Success into a system that can help customers progress. She is the co-founder of Success Chain, which enables customers and vendors to collaborate to achieve mutually desirable outcomes. This industry expert is also a thought leader who aids the growth of Customer Success enterprises by coaching, consulting, and training them.
Sydney Strader is a highly experienced Customer Success leader with extreme attention to detail and a penchant for challenges. She is skilled in project management, process improvement, agile methodologies, customer retention, business development, and much more. After occupying various roles in domains including customer support, account management, customer delivery, and advocacy, she is currently the Vice President of Customer Success at Catalyst Software.
Teresa Anania is the senior vice president of Global Customer Success, Renewals, and Customer Experience at Zendesk. She is passionate about helping her customers derive the highest ROI from their services.
Teresa is an exceptional leader who guides her team to collaborate across various departments to build, design, and optimize customized buyer journeys and enable multi-channel human engagement across the customer lifecycle to maximize customer onboarding and retention.
This is just a small sample of the incredible women spearheading the customer success movement. These (and many other amazing women beyond this list) are at the center of making customer success a more inclusive, sustainable, and resilient industry. Here’s to their strength and continued success!121
Published 8 Mar 2022, Updated 14 Mar 2022
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