Diversity and Inclusion in Customer Success

Marco Carrubba
Marco Carrubba Member Posts: 8 Contributor
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edited January 2021 in CS Org Conversations
Hello community!

I am preparing a presentation on tactics and practical techniques in the D&I space that help Customer Success teams to be more rich and effective.
Do you have any good motion that you applied successfully and what advantage did it bring?

For example: hiring for diversity is bringing value to what we do, not only for an improved and richer team spirit, but also for our ability to understand and serve our customers better: not only ethnicity, education or industry awareness, but also going to personal traits (e.g. introverts vs extroverts, optimist vs realist), social status, new vs seasoned etc.

Do you have any good ideas, motions, implementations that worked?


  • Jan Young
    Jan Young Member Posts: 21 Thought Leader
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    edited January 2021
    Hi Marco,
    I applaud your effort and question to the community-- DEI is important to me too. Can you clarify-- Are you looking to make the case for DEI or looking for examples of tactics and potential metrics to expect? Also, I'm not sure what you mean by motions. There are lots of ways to approach this effort depending on your goals.
  • Marco Carrubba
    Marco Carrubba Member Posts: 8 Contributor
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    edited January 2021
    Hi Jan, thanks! The case is made, clear and strong. I am looking at tactics and metrics indeed. With "motion" I meant tactics, but want to focus on the need for a practical change.
    The challenge I have is that many people say "we need more diversity in the team" , but then how do you implement that as a leader?
    The first thought goes to hiring diverse people, as this brings diversity in the team. For example, I have been experimenting with Disc: our whole team went through the assessment, and we found that there are a couple of areas which are not covered. As a consequence now my interviews feature a DiSC test as an additional element of valuation for candidates: they get a plus if they fall into that missing category.
    Another thing that people say is to have training opportunities for the team. But training is not really effective, and we are experimenting in creating interactive sessions from the team to the team. Topics range from unconscious bias to multiculturality: these become moments of experience and to me are more effective than following a training passively.
    So with this post I was looking for motions :) --> tactics that really work and that may be tailored to Customer Success specifically.
    Hope this clarifies the ask a bit?
  • LeahRutz
    LeahRutz Member Posts: 4 Seeker
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    edited January 2021

    I organized a webinar panel with some of my customers on hiring and retaining a racially diverse team. This conversation was specific to race but may be helpful in other areas as well.  The biggest takeaways were:
    1) Make sure you have diverse people in your talent pool and if you don't, ask your recruiting team to work on getting you more diverse candidates (and be willing to wait on filling the role until that happens) 
    2) Partner with organizations that support and empower people of color (or other groups)
    3) Keep privilege in mind. Women and people of color in the talent pool may have less experience because of systemic racism and sexism. Experience doesn't always indicate solid performance. And, if you've embraced the idea that diversity on your team will lead to better team performance, the new perspective may be as or more valuable than professional experience. 

    4) Encourage your team to attend DEI events and make sure your team is inclusive so that people of color (and other groups) want to work on your team. 

    Happy to brainstorm further if you'd like! 

  • Keishla Ceaser-Jones
    Keishla Ceaser-Jones Member Posts: 10 Contributor
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    edited January 2021
    @Marco Carrubba, you said: The challenge I have is that many people say "we need more diversity in the team"  

    When they say that, what do they mean? You mentioned many aspects of diversity? Are you and your team on the same page?

    Keishla Ceaser-Jones

    Senior Director, Partner Success

    Digital Immersion Technologies, EAB

  • Brian Hartley
    Brian Hartley Member Posts: 184 Expert
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    edited February 2021
    Hey Marco - this is great to hear you are doing this.

    Couple of things we did at my org (small company with 45 people)
    • Formed a company-wide DEI committee to ensure we were doing our part to educate the entire org, not just our CS team
    • Expanded our recruiting efforts beyond the traditional LinkedIn or other prominent job boards. 
    • Considering an internship program with a local charter school to provide a summer time position, rotating amongst all of the departments
    • We worked to form relationships with big and small universities (4 year schools, down to community colleges and everything in between) in town to get our name out as a place to consider for work.
    • I, personally, am embarking on a mentorship program in the public school district where I reside.  I plan to incorporate CS as a career path and educating my mentee on how to get into that sector
    • We have DEI specific slack channels to share upcoming events, books, podcasts, etc
    • We are looking to partner with another company in town to feature a consultant who can facilitate a Zoom with the two orgs and speak about DEI
    I could go on and on as it is something I am very passionate about (transracial family :) ).  Happy to chat further if you would like.