The Sales Hacker Podcast
The Sales Hacker Podcast

Episode · 2 years ago

65. How to Render Long-Term Success in The Workforce w/ Kim Rose

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

This week on the Sales Hacker podcast, we speak with Kim Rose, VP of Customer Success at BuildiumKim is a successful executive who spent 8 years out of the workforce. How’d she do it? She’s walking us through how to render long-term success in the workforce and add customer value in your career.

One, two, one, three, three, everybody, it's Sam Jacobs. Welcome to the SALESACER podcast. We've got an incredible show for you today. We've got Kim rows on the show. She's the VP of customer success and support at buildium. buildium's an incredible story. It's a company that I think is fifteen years old but didn't raise venture funding until just three years ago. So they were boots dropped and profitable and the founders ran that business for twelve years before they finally took on outside investment, which is just it's a great story. So a new it's inspiring story and Kim herself is an incredible executive and she walks through both professional lessons about how to scale a customer success organization, but also life lessons about how to re enter the workforce. She was out of the workforce for eight years raising her children and then she dope back in and it was difficult, but she walks us through that story. So it's a fantastic show. We want to thank our sponsors before we get into the show. The first sponsor is Conga. CONGA is the leading end to end digital document transformation suite. With Congo you can simplify documents, automate contracts and execute e signature so you can focus on accelerating sales cycles and closing business faster. Our second sponsors outreach, the leading sales engagement platform. Outreach support sales reps by enabling them to humanize communication at scale, from automating the soul sucking manual work that eats up selling time to providing actionary two tips on what communications are working best. Outreach has your back. A lastly, quick update on revenue collective. A lot of interest recently we have our first members from Berlin, from Tel Aviv, from Paris, from Oslo, Norway, from Barcelona, in addition to a bunch of other cities. Work Officially Launching San Francisco, Los Angeles in the second half of the year and hopefully Atlanta as well, and it's just been incredible. And actually next week we're hosting our first conference. It's we're calling at an executive off site. We're doing that on a boat in Chelsea Piers in New York City. We're going to go for crus but we've got some great sponsors there. So if you're interested in learning more about revenue collect to reach out to me on Linkedin ATS, linkedincom forward, slash in forward Lash Sam f Jacobs. It is that private community for revenue executives at high growth companies, invite only. But I'm happy to tell you more. We're up to over four hundred members, quickly approaching eight hundred. So it's been an incredible and credible story. But that's not the point for today's show. Today's show is about Kim rose, who, by the ways, a revenue collective member out of our Boston chapter, and her story about how to scale a customer success organization. So thanks so much and and listen to the INNIVER. Hey, everybody, it's Sam Jacobs. Welcome back to the sales hacker podcast. We've got a great show for you today. We've got Kim rose who is on the show. She's the VP of customer success at and support, a buildium, which is one of the fastest growing companies, I think, in the Boston area and and they're just doing gangbusters business and Kim is actively working on scaling out the Customer Success Organization. Now, Kim is an establish US customer success executive. She has more than fifteen years experience building and scaling customer focused organizations. At SASS companies. Her humans first approach is transformed a traditional service component of an organization to a clear and distinctive market differentiator. As a pioneer in this quickly growing space, Kim has proven that a relationship driven model, driven by a focus on the success of the customer, leads to rapid and efficient scale. Him has led teams the industry link companies around the Boston area, including carbonite and most recently buildium, where Kim leads the success organization. Today, Kim, welcome to the show. Thank you so much for having me. We are excited to have you. So I just read a very impressive bio, but we do like to start with, as we say, your baseball carts. We know your name is Kim rose. Your title is VP customer success and support. Is the company pronounced buildium? Did I say that right? Yes, you did. Awesome. And so what do is buildium? Do Tell us about the company? Sure, so, buildingum is a build a product for a third party property managers. It's a property management platform on which our customers can...

...run their the entirety of their business. And so think of third party property managers to run anywhere from a handful of properties to thousands of properties and the platform allows them to still listings, list vacancies, collect rents electronically, payout owners and vendor there's electronically. So it's a full accounting platform and allows customers to do anything from they lead to least things cycle to running their books to filing taxes, managing their communications with residents, owners and vendors as a sort of a full service platform for third party property managers. Wow, that sounds comprehensive. How old is the company? So we are coming up on fifteen years in August, which is super exciting. Company was founded by Michael Montero and Dmitri Georgicapola basically out of their own need to have something to manage properties that they were managing. They were engineers who invested in properties and sort of overtime started to lose track of WHO's paid rent and who's who's needing it and needs to pay rents and who's late, and so they built. They built what is kind of the foundation of the platform and then over the years it has grown and and scaled to what it is today. So we have over now sixteenzero customers and change and continue to just grow and grow. So really really fun stage of business. And it's fifteen years old. Is that right? Yes, wow, so that's older than most. I guess when we think of startups we think of younger companies, but they've been working on this for quite a while. It sounds like. Yeah, that's right. That's the the interesting story behind buildium is that, you know, Michael and Dmitri started it and kind of ran it by themselves for for several years, kind of adding and engineers and customers and but but really bootstrapped from the beginning and then really made a transition back a couple of years ago, two hund two thousand and sixteen, right when I joined, made the decision that, you know, this is really something they want to sort of invested grow, and so took a round of funding in two thousand and sixteen. That was a strategic investment meant to help the company grow in scale. So that was sort of the turning point, the pivotal point where and I joined about two months after that funding around closed and and it's been a wild ride ever since. Wow, it's an act. It's acting like a sort of a three year old start up now again, for sort of the second time, that's fantastic. And so how many employees is the company and and you run a pretty big teams to tell us a little bit about that. Yes, absolutely. So we have about two hundred and fifty employees worldwide. We have the majority of us are here in Boston, but we do have a couple of remote offices where we have folks in St Louis and Seattle, out in the town called Winter Washington. We have a team in Portugal, we have a team in India. So but the vast majority, about two hundred of us, are here in Boston. My team is the customer success organization and has three parts. We have an on boarding team who assists with initial implementation training, customized training and guidance for new customers. We have a customer success managers team and then we have a customer support team, and that in the entirety is about sixty five people. Wow, that's a that's a large team in or going to. I'm excited to dive in partially because there's just so much conversation right now about customer success, how to design the organization, how to compensate...

...the organization, how that organization works with the sales team. So we're going to talk a lot about that, but first we want to know how did you get here. Tell us a little bit about your story, because it's really really interesting and, I think, increasingly relevant given the diversity of the workforce. Yeah, absolutely, it's very winding. So I graduated college with a degree in math and a minor in physics and I intended to be a teacher. That was sort of my my dream was I was a soccer players, sort of a teacher coach. was very appealing to me. High School Math and sciences, where I was born, to be headed. But I got connected to a text startup through an alumni of the school I went to. I was the University of Richmond before I graduated, and ended up taking a job in that tech company. It was a start up that was building software to build medical claims electronically, which, of course, I'm dating myself, but didn't exist way back then, and so I worked. I did that for a few years. I was primarily working as what would now be considered a product manager with a business analyst. I was writing back that was talking to customer as I was talking to providers and and so it was a really interesting role. I got married had some kids and decided to stay home and and spend some time raising my two boys, and so I took eight years off out of the workforce and sort of panics a little bit when my youngest was, you know, getting to you know, ready to go to kindergarten and I was itching to do something, but I didn't quite know what I was going to do. I spent a lot of time thinking about going back to school and and getting re educated to go into a teaching role, because that was sort of never never, sort of fully removed from my my mind and I toyed with that a little bit. I spent a very heavily involved in the PTO at my kids schools and doing technology projects and I ended up connecting with a couple of friends, one of whom was the wife of the CO founder of carbonight, and she said, you know where? That was a time back in two thousand and six where carbonight was just getting off the ground. Product was flying off the shelf. She said, we need help like which just crazy. It was the handful of people and they needed a QA engineer and I didn't know anything about technology and how it had changed from one thousand nine hundred and ninety eight to two thousand and six, and so I remember talking with the VP of engineering and basically saying, look, I'm sure I'll figure it out. I have almost nothing to show you that suggests that, but if it doesn't work out, then you know you and I can we will part ways. I will probably know it before you do and we can just ea conquire me. And he said fine, and he gave me a shot and I came in as a Qa engineer and I spent a couple of years doing that and then, as the company grew, I just took on different roles really based on finding problems and solving problems, and so I moved through the organization. I was very grateful to have leaders and mentors who had faith in my ability to find a problem and figure it out and give me an opportunity to do that. So I moved from Qa to program management, gabbled a little bit, caught back and product management, then ended up in a business operations role where I was really manage angles and metrics across the organization with the exact team. Then I ended up moving into a customer retention when carbonight went public and we were really starting to focus heavily on on retaining our customer base and moved into a customer attention role, which eventually morphed into a customer success at the time we called the customer marketing. CUSS hadn't hadn't made its way as a title yet, but I ended up there...

...as the head of customer marketing, which manifested itself as a customer successful had you, I guess the question is, this is a you. I mean you sort of set it, I mean and on the one hand you you, you acknowledge like the difficulty. On the other hand, it didn't sound, you know, it sounded like you sort of networked your way fairly quickly. But what advice would you give to people that have been out of the workforce, mothers or fathers that have been at home taking care of the kids? Like you, have a strategy? Do you have advice to have guidelines for people, because I'm sure the people are I'm sure, frankly, a lot of mothers and fathers are terrified to take maternity or paternity leave in the first place because maybe they're worried about losing their spot at work. So how do you think about it? Yeah, it's I did. I suppose telling the story like that does make it sound easy and or smooth. It was neither. It was actually pretty rocky and had lots of highs and lows along the way. I think the there are two things that I would tell people. One is there is a an aspect of humility that you know you have to kind of go it back into the workforce where it will meet you. I actually had kind of a negative reaction to being a QA engineer because I had made my way into a fairly high position before I went out of the workforce and so it was a little bit of like a now I'm just a Qa engineer, but I felt like I would be able to make something of it if I just sort of knows to the grindstone figured it out. Ultimately see that ended up. That role ended up being the key to my success at carbonight, because being a Qa engineer allowed me to fully understand not only how exactly the product works, but what our customers were intending to get out of the product and what worked for them and what didn't work for them, and I got very, very close to the customer journey and the customers expectation, which ultimately ended up being the key to my success as I moved through the organization because I had that foundation and I was able to talk about that in that in a way that a lot of the other leaders and executives who had just kind of been hired into a leadership roll didn't. Didn't have the perspective I had on the product and the product that we delivered to our customers, and that ended up being really important. But I think you know, being able to meet meet a company, if you see a the potential in a company. I think you know, taking any role knowing that you will probably be given an opportunity if you seek get out, to move throughout the organization. I think the other thing is be curious, like I moved in different roles because I was curious about why things weren't working or if I perceived something to be inefficient, I just went and fixed it. It was sort of like find a problem and fix it, and then those things, those actions, ended up becoming new roles for me, and I think that's a really a key for anybody really in a startup as well as sort of what I like about the startup is it's it allows you to, you know, find a problem and go fix it. Don't wait for somebody to give you an opportunity. Go get it, and that's sort of how that happened for me. But it was a little messy for sure. Well, not, it's just really it's impressive because I know that it's a it's a daunting it's a daunting especially when you're making the decision in the first place. I think once you've got the momentum of being inside the organization and demonstrating, you know how talented you are, probably is a little bit easier, but just that first step is often the most difficult. And and is it true that is it just carbonate and buildium? Are Those the two companies that you've worked at Sinto since two thousand and six? No, actually so. After a while at carbonate, a good friend of mine who had been on the sounding team at at carbonight had left and he had taken a role as a CEO at...

...a seed stage start up and company's same as data books. They are here, based in Camber Bridge, and he asked me to come and join him and build the company. And so it was a group of developers from Slobania, which is a beautiful country if you've never been there, and they came through Tech Stars and they, you know, had a product that had a little bit of traction needed a business team behind it. So myself and a couple of marketers that I had worked with at carbon night and my friend, let me come rays and who was the CEO, set off to kind of build that business and you know, we spent a year there. There was a combination of factors, I think, that made that not the right move for me at the time, and a lot of it was the team was was based in Conia, so we had some sort of cultural challenges and time and having trying to build a business with a non colocated team at that stage is really challenging. And yet I had I had children who were my oldest at the time was going into his senior year in college, or junior and call in high school, and I needed to be doing college visits and getting him off and running, and so I just couldn't commit to the the challenges that we had and so about a year in, made a decision to leave that role and found my way to build them in August of two thousand and sixteen. Well, the experience of managing and working with remote teams is just par for the course at this point in two thousand and nineteen and, as you mentioned, where you've got offices for building them, and I guess Portugal and in Seattle and all of the world. So so now you're your your you know, tell us about let's dive into the the meat of the conversation, which is really about customer success as first of all, you know, you've got a lot of really interesting and useful insights about what it means to deliver exceptional customer success. Tell us a little bit about cutting your framework and how you think about building this organization such that it can deliver the right experiences for the customer. Yeah, absolutely. So. I think the one thing that attracted me to buildium was the fact that the founders were so customer centric and customer focus and and it wasn't just words on a on a value wall or a mouthpad or you know, customers first. Everybody says it, but when I was first meeting them, I it was just abundantly clear that it was a it was, you know, not only a buildium, a mission driven company to be, you know, do right by not only the customers, the employees and Sert of the community around us, but really lives into the customer is the most important thing, and so for me it was, you know, taking that and making sure that as an organization, as a company, we didn't lose sight of we don't lose sight of that as we grow, because the stage of business that we're at, where we sort of actually had taken the funding and we said, okay, like we're going to grow really fast. That's all great, but it's very, very easy to lose sight of what's important to the customer or maybe lose a little bit of that edge. And so building the success or when I got here, we started with basically just a handful of customer support reps and I started looking at the data that suggested that our customers were having a problem that we called failure to launch, which basically meant they couldn't get up and running, they weren't getting to value fast enough. So that that was when we started the first investment in the team, in on boarding, and what that, what they were really oriented to do, is make sure that our newest customers could not only get up and running, but that we understood what they were trying it. But they intended to get out of the software and we could build customized...

...training plans to make sure they got that value. So the arm boarding team started with just a couple of folks borrowed from the Customer Support Organization and and now grew to with fifteen. Fifteen people on that team now and and really that was the first key to making sure that we stayed aligne organizationally on what was what's most important for our customers and the success of making sure that they will continue to be successful and be top of mind, because now we had customed, we had people post sales talking directly to them proactively immediately. That was kind of how that was born. That drive in that is to charge for onboarding. Do you do you charge for on boarding? I'm always curious about that. You know, have spot is adamant, adamant that. You know they charge. Nobody gets away from from paying an onboarding fee and I think part of the reason they do that for, besides the money, is to confirm commitment in skin in the game, to actually adopting the software in the right way. Did you feel pressure to explicitly charge for on boarding? Yeah, so actually it was interesting. We everything that we have done at build them and it sort of my nature is to test, learn, iterate, repeat, and so we tested our way into that. When we first rolled out on board a, it was a it was sort of their mission was just makes the customer a successful. We didn't really know what that meant. We just said, whatever you do, talk to them and make sure that they are going to be successful. And then over time we developed playbooks and we developed sort of process and we've developed a strategy for how we were going to execute on that across the different types of customers who want different types of things out of the platform. But it really started with just talk to them and make them make sure they're successful. There was no charge. The sales team offered it to anybody who expressed worried or concern about getting set up. That was kind of how we did it back then. As we went and learned, we then learned, okay, look at how exponentially more successful our customer mirth are if they work with our onboarding team versus if they don't. So then we said, okay, now on boarding is required, but we're going to ascribe a fee to it. But the but the sales team can wait it. And that was primarily because there was a lot of reluctance. I mean it's a hard thing. There was a there was some pushbacks from sales and from the organization on like, will wait a minute, if we charge for it, we're going to lose customers, because there could. We are customers, are small businesses, they're super price sensitive, and so there was definitely some relocked in to start charging. But what we found was for the customers who paid for it, we actually ended up with data that suggested they were exponentially more successful. So there was this like building case for making it a required fee because the customers, if you worked with on boarding, you were more successful than if you didn't. If you paid for onboarding you were more successful than if you worked with on boarding, which is more successful than if you didn't. So then it was an evolution that by the fall of two thousand and seventeen we rolled out the program which is now required and we charge for it. But it was definitely a process. And so on boarding is a different team. So I think did you mentioned there's three teams? On boardings one of them. What are the other teams under your pro view, customers success managers, and so those are the customer success managers. Are Aimed at driving loyalty, retention and also expansion revenue from their book of business. We we have that team organized in a couple of different ways. We have our largest customer segment has dedicated the SMS who, you know, do the typical CSM thing. They do qbrs, they are to customer visits. They are very focused on developing the relationship and bringing that Voice of...

Cuper back into the organization and through through products. We have a couple of CSMS for the segment below our largest and they are dedicated at csms for customers in that segment in their first couple of years. So that segment is fairly large and we couldn't cover the whole segment and so we basically said work with the customers as if in the same manner that the key accounts CSOM's work, but after two years of working with the customer your cadence rolls off a bit so that you can continue to work. They have a higher volume of customers they work with. And then we have what we call churn fighters, which have proactive CSMS who look at indicators of success and or leading indicators of churn and proactively reach out to those customers to see if they can re engage them. So we have a health in debt or an engagement core. We look at a variety of metrics that suggests that customers are waning off the usage of the product, and so we have a couple of CSMS who are value driven. We drive value driven conversations with customers who appear to show signs of waiting interest to ever do is a turn fighting team ever proactively offered discounts, or is it purely about kind of usage and engagement with the platform? It's generally usage an engagement with the platform. They're generally looking for things like you know that we have services that we're customers can screen applicants. We use a third party service where we can, where they screen applicants for their their properties, and if we start to see that usage declining, it it generally either means they're moving away from buildium or it means that, you know, there may be using a different product for that. So the conversations are kind of just learning about what what's going on with the customers. Sometimes we learn that Oh, they're like they're leasing cycle is just changing and they don't have any turnover and in some cases we start to hear about them using a different software, we can talk them through why using it all in one platform is is better. But we put that in place last summer and we're seeing a ton of success that now we're actually also using those were slightly changing the the purview of the churn fighters and actually driving proactive expansion with that team, meaning going after not just leading indicators of churn but but really healthy cust summers who may have an opportunity to take advantage of other services. So we're driving proactive expansion conversations through that team as well. You know, there's a lot of discussion and debate for Customer Success Teams, a delineating, you know, customer success versus, I guess, account management. And really the conversation is about to what extent revenue and money should be part of their mandate and to what extent revenue and money should be part of their compensation plans. And there's one school of thought that says, you know, use the customer success team in sent them, you know, and the sent them for expansion, as you just mentioned, extent, and sent them for to drive new product adoption. There's another school of thought that says keep the customer success team away from revenue metrics. Maybe you give them like a gross retension metric, but basically you want sales oriented people doing selling so that the customer success people can sort of be pure advisors to the customer without having a clear revenue incentive to to their behavior. Which School of thought, or is it? Is it a blend or a matrix do you do you fall into? Yeah, it's a bit of a blend and I think it depends on who your customers are to a certain extent, and sort of what what the consultative sale looks like. For us, we are they do carry a quota. They, the CSMS are, have...

...a variable part of their comps. That is seventy five percent were ten mention of their customers and then twenty five percent add on our expansion revenue target. So they they do have a sale goal that they that they want to hit. It is heavily weighed to retention of their customer base. But I think that helps us keep top of mind the fact that what really keeps our customers around is the usage of some of our services that cause them to be sticky. So it's driving the behavior that actually, in sense, the retention. That that is sort of how that picture comes together. If you can, if your customer starts using epay, meaning their residence or paying rents online through the system, they are exponentially more sticky and they're getting more value out of the product than if they're not. Because if they're cut, if their residents are still walking into their their office with the check and then they have to go to the bank, you know they're the software becomes kind of a side side business. But if they are starting to you know, our promise in our value to the customer is that if you use our stuff where you will get time back and you can use that time to do whatever it is that is most important to you. Maybe you want timeback so you can spend more time with your family, maybe you want timeback so you can grow your business. But but our software is designed to make help you be more efficient and help you get your timeback to do what you want. And we know that if you residents are paying rent online, you know that is going to give you the most time back. So how can we help you do that? And that keeps the CSM kind of oriented at making sure that their conversations, they're designed around helping the customer get that time back. Did you feel like what sort of money always part of it such that you didn't feel like you needed a different hiring profile, because sometimes what people say is that as they layer on revenue expectations into the customer success team, they find that they're asking people that chose not to go into sales to do selling activities and that can create a conflict. Or did you always have this profile in mind as you are building the team? Yeah, so it getting the right hiring profile has been really interesting for everything. I would say our churn fighter profile is much more transactional, more like a BDR. So it is, you know, lots of dials and lots of you know, basically sort of going through through a list and prioritizing it and hitting the phone for our CSMS, for the larger account what we've found really work there is a happy mix between somebody who wants to make the sale and somebody who doesn't. We have found that the profile that works better for us is the more relationship based account manager who is going to want to go visit the customer and want to go do those things. But we've on but there are fair number of folks, when we've not had a problem getting that profile with somebody who also wants to have the sales component. I think there's their start, because there's a lot of hybrid roles. We're starting to have some success there, but it's been really interesting. We've also honed in on the hiring profile for our onboarding team, which is teachers for making great on boorders, because it's very training and based and listening to the customers learning style and keeping them on track and, you know, making sure that they're paying attention to what the customer is absorbing and where they need to sort of double down, and so that's been a really interesting learning for us over the last year or so. What are your strategies? You know you mentioned that you work very, very closely with the sales team. How do you do that effectively? What are there some of the lessons, the tools that you use to make sure that you are completely aligned with your...

...sales team, because obviously that sales to customer success handoff is absolutely critical in scaling the successful Revenue Organization. Yes, absolutely. I mean we've spent a lot of time. I have it an excellent partner in the head of sales who fully understands and appreciates and absorbs all the things that are happening post sale so that we can have really productive conversations. We've just we provide a lot of I feel like providing a lot of context is in portant. So we this is really across the organization. But the cut part of the customer centricity that we have your at builty of it is that we talk about our customers all the time and so our you know, a sales orp knows if we say the name of a customer, they know things about that customer. The product team, they don't talk about use their personas in the more traditional sort of Jane Doe type of person on a slide, but they're actual customers who have been into the office or for whom we've gone, you know, taken a group out to visit or came to our workshops or various other things. And so when we talk about what's happening to our customers or what our customers are saying to us, we're really personalizing it and sharing that across the organization. So our sales teams stays pretty close to how successful a customer is after after they sales. Now you know there's a there's a high volume. So this is predominantly in our bigger customers, but it's not uncommon for for us to be walking down the hall and have a sales up kind of say, oh my Gosh, how is you know, how is Bob Doing, like, is he getting up and running? I hope, you know, hope you you're join working with them or something like that, because they developed a relationship during the sale. For US listening really wants to make sure they're successful after so I think personalizing it is really important. And then we just we talk a lot. We go to their sale stand ups. We have a week we reading where we talk about are we seeing any challenges? Is there a pattern? Is there something that you know we can provide the sales team for things that are hitting the customers after sale that we want to make sure we cover ahead of it? We you know, it's not uncommon for an on order to join a sales call to, you know, more in depth go through with the onboarding process is going to be. If somebody has a sales member has a customer of prospect WHO's potentially concerned about it, we'll just hop on the call with them or we'll go to a site visit with them. So it's just really collaborative and really making sure that we view our customers as the people that they are not just sort of a number and Mur number, you know, or, you know, a name on a spread shad and a sale course record. Yeah, absolutely. Do you find? I've found, you know, in the last couple roles where I've been in kind of revenue leadership roles, that bringing the customer success team into the presale process can be very, very powerful. Do you find yourself getting where the team's getting pulled into that presales process? For us it was more, you know, enterprise sales, where we didn't want just a clean handoff. We wanted the customer to feel like, you know, there was a group of people that work committed to their success and they would get to know those people over even as early as, you know, early on in the sales process. Do you find that same that same kind of pull that that the team is getting brought in to pre sell conversations, or is it still the clean handoff that you find most dominant? Yeah, now we definitely are getting involved in the presaled conversations, particularly in our larger segments, but we would do it for anybody who would want, who wants to really make something out of that conversation. For our larger customers and and larger prospects, we definitely are involved presale. We actually introduce the customer to the on boarder who is going to be working with them, and that goes two things. One, it's you...

...know, it's really lives into the message that we are here for them, you know, Post Sale. But it also gives the on boarder and the CSM who are in the conversation a glimpse into what the customer is looking to get out of the software before we even get started. So that conversation just rolls right on through and when the customer is transition so it doesn't feel like a handoff, it just feels like kind of the next conversation is with another person who already has the context for what, you know, what has been going on, what the customer is looking to do, and can just say okay, so you know we we heard this and let's get you started, to get you there and a short period of time. So it really works for us and you know, the challenge just becomes bandwist, you know, to be honest. So that's where we want to be involved in all the conversations, but it's just hard to do it all, so we have to be a little conscious of that. Yeah, that makes sense. One last topic before we sort of head to the conclusion of our of today's conversation. But there's been just a tremendous amount of conversation and talk about the level of intensity that's required when building a company. And there's a group of people, a lot of them investors, that, frankly haven't worked at operating companies in a very long time, but they're adamant that, you know, what's required sometimes is is eighty hours a week, a hundred hours a week, just complete immersion in the building of the company. And then those are the folks that believe that you can call it worklife balance or Worklife inmigration, but that there needs to be some kind of relationship between where your mind goes and where your body goes and that it can't be all work all the time if you want to run a marathon, for example. So where do you come out on this idea of like worklife balance, worklife intigration and balancing your personal life with the responsibilities at work? Yeah, so I this one was a hard lesson for me personally. I'm a single mom and so I have the demands of my kids, are are real. They're getting older now. My youngest is a freshman in high school. But there were a lot of times early on, and particularly in the early days of carbonight, that I was working, you know, twelve, fourteen, sixteen hour days. I was, you know, working through dinner. I was, you know, just not at all, even if I was physically home, I was not at all present. And I started hearing about it from my kids, you know, like mom, you're never working, you never not working, you never not doing this, and why don't you just put your computer away? was sort of like the not a very common phrase, and so it took me, I think, probably when I started at buildium and and Michael and Dmitri, you were not like this. And now you know, we've had a three years of a lot of growth and transition and change here at buildium, and inclusive of Michael and media still involved in the business, but we've a new CEO and what has been a theme throughout has been, you know, make sure you take time for yourself so that you can give your best to the business. And when you are just all out like that, the quality of what you can give back and your passion for doing it really is degrades over time. So for me, you know, it was a long time to learn the lesson, but I am so much better for building on for my team, for my you know, achieving what we've achieved in the organization, now that I have found a balance and understand where when to say, you know, I'm actually going home now because I want to have dinner with my kids, or it's really important for me to get to, you know, the track Banquuet, or I'm going to take the day off to go visit...

...my fun and at College, and in those moments for me and for my family are really, really important and make me better when I'm here, because I am fully here when I'm here and I am fully home when I am home. So from that's where mean that was a really hard lesson for me. But I definitely think it's important to take time to recharge and we at buildium definitely encourage that of our teams. You know, I will always say take you know, even if there is a pressing issue on a Friday afternoon and you know, it's unless it is a dire situation where a customer is in trouble, then we just say, you know what, we'll pick it up on Monday and and then on Monday morning we expect to pick it up and make sure we resolve it as quickly as possible. But I want the team to have their time to make sure that they can recharge and then give their all when they're here. And so that's that's in the lesson I've learned and we've been really lucky to have that culture here at building where everybody understands we have we had an open house a couple weeks ago where we everybody invited their families. We have a beach day where everybody invite their families. It's really important to kind of make sure that that we continue to recognize that they're you know, we have we all have other priorities outside of our day job and whether that be a family or a pet or a bobby or some thing else like you know, doing those things helps complete the picture and make sure that everybody is fulfilled in a more well rounded way. Yeah, completely agree. Can we're coming to the end of our time together. The last thing we like to do before we wrap up is sort of pay some homage to either books that have been really influential, people are mentors that have been really influential. You know, just pay it forward. Help US continue to walk along the bread crumb trail and figure out what influenced you and and what you think we should be thinking about. So any books, any people, any mentors, any people that you want us to know about? When you think about, you know, paying it forward and bringing some inside and enlightenment to the audience, what do you think about? Yeah, yeah, you know, we are big believers here in the Lencioni book five dysfunctions, the advantage. We spent a lot of time, as an exact tame, talking about talking about that. We are. We are fully immersed in radical candor, which is, you know, a book him thought wrote about being sort of radically candid or truthful and open and direct with your colleagues, in your peers, and and so those are, you know, sort of the books that, from a business perspective, I lean into. I re read many, many times the power of habit, because I find myself struggling to get myself back into habits of working out or eating well or whatever the case may be, and I find that understanding the science and sort of the neurology of habits helps me get back into a good frame of mind from people. You know, again, I mentioned that I had I had a lot of people at carbonight who believed in me and and we're really able to to give me opportunities or encourage me to take opportunities. One of them I mentioned is swaw me to Morason, who I eventually left carbonight and went to work for at the startup. I hold it him in very high regard and and I also had very, very lucky right now to be working for one of my awesome mentors. It's Chris litster. Is that now CEO of Buildium, and Chris and I've known each other for about thirty years and he built his career at a number of different places, most recently and notably constant contact and he and I. He helped me so much through my journey at Carbonite as a mentor and a friend, and then I had the opportunity, he had the opportunity to come into build them and I had the opportunity to work for him and I love that when you know you have somebody who's so important to you and then all of a sudden you you're working, you know, day in and day out with him and learning from him and his ability to be so compassionate and...

...empathetic to small business owners but also being really disciplined about, you know, how we operate here at billium. It has been has been great. That's fantastic, Kim. It's been amazing having on the show. There are people out there that are listening. You know, there may be parents that are on leave don't want to get back into the workforce. There may be customer success exacts that want to reach out and engage, and so what's the best way to engage with you? Maybe they want to work for you. So what's your preferred method of communication if people want to reach out that are listening? Yeah, I mean I tend to be an open book. I give my customers my cell phone numbers, my cell phone number. Let's not do that this time. That's thank your hum yeah, yeah, I think linkedin is a really good way to get in touch with me. Yeah, or my email is Kim Dot rose at bill be oncom. Awesome. So Kim Dot rose a Buildingcom or you can find her on on Linkedin. Kim, thanks so much for being on the show. It's been fantastic. Great thanks them everybody. It's Sam Jacobs and this is Sam's corner. What a fantastic interview with Kim rose, who is built an incredible career as a customer success leader and is currently at building where she's running a team of over sixty five. Some great tactical lessons and then some great kind of life lessons. You know, it's just it's not easy being out of the workforce for eight years and Kim did it and then came back in. The advice that she gave when she rejoined carbonight and she was a QA engineer and she thought, frankly, that the role was beneath her. But she said you have to meet the Labor mark at the workforce, at the job market where it meets you, and that you might not always be able to jump right back in as an executive if you were an executive when you left and when you took some time away, but if you put the effort in, if you are curious and if you commit yourself, you can quickly rise up the ranks, at least at a high growth company. I know that's easier said than done, and I know that not everybody has those options, but I think it was just it's an inspiring story and it's cool. And Kim's a single mother raising two kids and one of them in college one of them's in high school, and yet she's still building an incredible customer success organization. Obviously also bears mentioning she's a revenue collective member. She's part of our Boston chapter, so that may have something to do with it, of course, but maybe not in terms of tactical customer success lessons. They have an onboarding team, they have a customer success team and they have a retention team, at turn fighting team. All of those teams have some component of revenue responsibility. That's it. That's a debate that's out there. Some folks want the the CSM team and anybody that's not part of the sales team to be excluded from revenue responsibilities, but Kim specifically has seventy five percent of the complan for CSM's in retention and twenty five percent and actual revenue expansion. So they have sales like responsibilities. Really interesting insight that she mentioned teachers make really good on boarders because they are used to training and they're used to developing learning programs to help people learn new skills and concepts and I thought that was really an interesting idea. And then, you know, it's all about alignment and it's working very, very closely with the sales team. If you want to have a great customer success organization, it needs to be bonded with the sales team. Some of that's going to come down to incentives, but some of that is going to come down to meeting cadences and sort of transparencing communication between those two teams. Can mentioned that they have personas, but the personas at buildium are not abstractions. You know, at hub spot it's owner Ali and Marketing Mary and all of these things. At buildium their actual customers, their actual customers where they describe the problems that those customers had and and the experiences they that they had. So I think there's just a lot to learn in this show, particularly but on customers success, but also just frankly, on on how to be a great...

...executive. So I really, really enjoyed that episode. If you want to hear more from me, if you want to have feedback, you can reach out to me on linkedincom forward, slash in and then forwards lashm f Jacobs, please do give the show five stars on Itunes so that we can be at the top of the POPs and top of the charts and beat out all those other sales podcasts that are lesser and some in my experience, I'm just I don't know, I'm rambling right now, but don't worry about it. Just give us five stars, okay, and we want to thank our sponsors, Conga, the leading end and digital document transformation suite, and outreach, the leading sales engagement platform. Thanks so much for listening and I'll talk to you next time.

In-Stream Audio Search

NEW

Search across all episodes within this podcast

Episodes (388)