Senior Director of Getting Sh*t Done

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Alex Farmer
Alex Farmer Member Posts: 62 Expert
First Anniversary Photogenic First Comment GGR Blogger 2021
edited August 2023 in CS Org Conversations
Excuse the click bait subject line but that is my dream job title - someone responsible for getting things DONE on behalf of customers across the entire company.  Basically, someone to find friction or unnecessary effort and get rid of it.

Here's my challenge:  I interviewed someone for a VP Support role who spent 2 years running support, but 5 years building a CS function from scratch at a start up.  We want to hire talented people and he is one of them, but I need to come up with a job description that's more than a laundry list of things we need to get done.

At Cognite, we're pretty much starting CS from scratch.  My thinking is we hire him to work alongside our community manager/customer marketing leader - she does the one-to-many and he does the one-to-one, delivering customer journeys, EBR deck, etc.  Individual CSMs will use the collateral he builds and drives.

So: Have you come across a job title or job description in CS that encapsulates this?  CS Ops?  Success Planner?  Customer Success Initiatives?  Customer Success Strategy?  Director of Getting Sh*t Done?

All comments welcome - help me innovate!


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Comments

  • Jeffrey Kushmerek
    Jeffrey Kushmerek Member Posts: 98 Expert
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    edited August 2020
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    I had to jump in here, as GSD is my podcast name lol!

    I love where you are going here. Is this an actual Director position? If so, I like "Director of Strategic Customer Initiatives "

    I would also invite the candidate to help with the naming and job responsibilities. It will feel like a collaborative process, and they will feel ownership over their OKR's.

    Love the direction here!

    Jeff
  • Scott Morgan
    Scott Morgan Member Posts: 24 Expert
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    edited August 2020
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    Do you need the title to be descriptive of the activities in the job? A director of GSD works in that case. I am bias to Customer Success Strategist, that is what I call myself because my hands are into everything that deals with customer success.
  • Natalie Williams
    Natalie Williams Member Posts: 14 Thought Leader
    edited August 2020
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    LOVE the subject line... the bait definitely worked. If only HR would let me change my title to GSD! We had a role like the one you are describing at my previous company and the job title was Director/VP/Head of Customer Success Operations & Experience.
  • Markus Siebeneick
    Markus Siebeneick Member Posts: 33 Expert
    edited August 2020
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    Based on your description, I have seen this fall under Customer Success Enablement
  • WillowMoellering
    WillowMoellering Member, CS Leader Posts: 21 Thought Leader
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    edited August 2020
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    What is the top priority for this year?  As someone that was just on the job market, the best way I got to positions was based on the title being general (ie Head of Customer Success) or specifically aligning with what I was interested (ie Director of Strategic Customer Success).

    Also, I don't think it hurts to show your personality in the description, but don't go too crazy in the title.  We are all working through a lot of job titles, so you want to appear in the more bland search.
  • Ido Barnoam
    Ido Barnoam Member Posts: 22 Thought Leader
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    edited August 2020
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    I agree with @Markus S above.  I think what you describe falls under Enablement.

    As a CS Enablement manager at my company, I don't necessarily go and look for friction points and remove them, but rather build and maintain processes and collateral for our entire CS team (which includes the CSM team and the Support team). This includes EBR and AR decks, building onboarding processes, building data hygiene best practices and etc. 

    If it helps I could go and try to find the specific job description and share it.
  • Chris Mitchell
    Chris Mitchell Member Posts: 2 Navigator
    edited August 2020
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    Love the thinking behind your post @Alex Farmer and what you're trying to achieve but does the title really matter?

    What's more important is making sure he is enabled to get sh*t done internally!

    Make sure there is no friction in his way and remove unnecessary effort in his role and he wont care what his title his...
  • Effie Mansdorf
    Effie Mansdorf Member Posts: 76 Expert
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    edited August 2020
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    I would say CS ops. I've also been building from the ground up since the beginning of the year. I love GSD, I think we all should have that in our title! However given that we are customer facing it may not fly. 

    For those who may think titles are not important -  they are! Customers need to know who they are interacting with. At times I have had veteran customers (pre formalized CS team) who point to their PS manager when asked who their CSM is. Having a clear descriptive title helps define the role, not just internally, but for the customer as well.
  • Chad Horenfeldt
    Chad Horenfeldt Member Posts: 58 Expert
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    edited September 2020
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    CS Strategist sounds right. 

    I think Get Shit Done is the wrong approach - not because of the language. There shouldn't be anyone on your team that isn't getting shit done. It may be insulting to others on the team that you hire in the future. Something to consider.
  • Alex Farmer
    Alex Farmer Member Posts: 62 Expert
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    edited September 2020
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    Great feedback - and yes actual director-level.  Strategic Customer Initiatives is nice
  • Alex Farmer
    Alex Farmer Member Posts: 62 Expert
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    edited September 2020
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    @Ido Barnoam that would be hugely helpful actually - mind pinging that over?
  • Matt Myszkowski
    Matt Myszkowski Member Posts: 143 Expert
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    edited September 2020
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    I am with @Chad Horenfeldt & others.

    CS Strategist, or if needing a more senior title then add a prefix of "Head Of" to it so you have a Head of CS Strategy.

    I also think @Jeffrey Kushmerek's idea around title, responsibilities and KPI creation being pushed on the candidate for greater accountability is a very good idea.
  • Ido Barnoam
    Ido Barnoam Member Posts: 22 Thought Leader
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    edited September 2020
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    Sure @Alex Farmer. Sent it over.
  • Thomas Hussenet
    Thomas Hussenet Member Posts: 9 Contributor
    edited September 2020
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    Hello Alex, all

    Coming a bit late in the loop, but agree on the CSOps or CSEnablement title

    We created that role end of 2019 at AB Tasty, and it brought lot of value.

    If it can be useful please find below the full role description:

    Your mission

    This is a senior role with a focus on Customer Success enablement and strategy. Reporting to the VP Client, you will contribute to AB Tasty's hyper-growth by helping optimize our efficiency, at a global level.

    The primary missions of the Customer Success Efficiency Senior Manager are:

    • To make sure Customer Success Managers are able to over-perform in their job, that is: 
    • delivering the best expertise to Clients, by mastering each part of the tool, including new features to be released;
    • focusing on adding value to Clients by helping them implementing and optimizing their CRO* strategy, by providing CSM's with accurate KPI's and tools to efficiently manage their Clients and their adoption to the tool; *CRO = Conversion Rate Optimization that's our field of expertise
    • using a smooth platform which answer their needs as well as the Clients ones, by making sure Product releases fit their requirements and expectations.
    • To implement and document internal processes 
    • To provide Customer Success Managers with the right tools to manage their activities and clients, and train them on how to get the best of those.
    • To ensure a smooth communication between the CSM and the Product team to make sure both teams are on the same page and that CSM are the best product ambassadors for our clients.

    Tasks & Responsibilities

    Your role is to help increase Customer Success efficiency through 3 main domains: 

    • Processes & Tools
    • Onboarding & Ongoing training
    • Product & Tech Client Ambassador

    1- PROCESSES & TOOLS

    As part of the department industrialization objective, improve our processes and tools to ensure CSM focus on delivering a world-class level of service. 

    Processes

    • Ensure all our activities are handled through processes
    • Thanks to a deep knowledge of current CSM activities and data analysis, identify inefficient and/or missing processes
    • Based on the previous, design new and/or update and maintain current processes 
    • Ensure existing and new processes are Enterprise level and aligned across the different regions 

    Tools

    • Ensure the CS team use the best internal and/or external tools to monitor Clients and CSM activities
    • Manage the integration of those tools and processes to existing ones (used by the CS team or by any other departments) 

    2- ONBOARDING & ONGOING TRAINING

    Product and market/industry expertise is key for CS efficiency. Thus, an important part of the role will be dedicated to training and coaching.

    • Onboard new CSM by training them on our product and features, and set them up with our internal tools and processes
    • Deliver regular trainings to the CS team so they are up-to-date with our products (current platform, existing features and new features), tools and processes 
    • Consult with Managers/Team Leaders to identify training needs amongst their teams and ensure course content, training methodologies and training materials meet those needs
    • Develop and deliver content and training that equips the CS team to be trusted advisors to our Clients through the demonstration of Product and market/industry expertise

    3- PRODUCT & TECH CLIENT AMBASSADOR

    Rolling out new products and features requires making sure they match Clients and CSM's needs and expectations and then, ongoing training and education before and after they are released. 

    Working closely with Product and Product Marketing to bridge the communication with the CS team will be an important part of the role as well. 

    The CS efficiency senior manager needs to ensure CSM's have all the information and knowledge to be the best product ambassadors for our Clients.

    The CS Efficiency senior manager will be the central point of contact of the Product team for:  

    • Future product design:
      • Gather information from Clients and CSM's 
      • Participate in Product Roadmap definition
      • Participate along with other CSM's in Product Design sprints
    • New feature adoption for CS teams:
      • Prepare internal release documentation along with the Product and Product Marketing teams
      • Train and coach CSM's on usage of new features
    Hope this helps
    Cheers
    Thomas