Looking through my lens as a CSM here’s how my typical day looks like…
Without having some pre-built structure to my day and week I can easily lose track of critical items that need follow-up, care, and planning. I need to have time in my day for: my scheduled meetings with customers, prep and follow-up time for those meetings, daily barrage of emails, escalations, strategic internal meetings, special projects, grooming customer references, and the list goes on..
I feel I am fairly adaptable and can pivot on a dime to flex my day for unexpected needs that come up. With that said, our customers deserve time and focused attention – it is crucial to keep their needs and requests front and center. In addition, it is critical to prepare so I can manage my time and though I may have some reactive activities on my list, I try to keep my approach very much proactive!
As a CSM at Medallia Strikedeck, I am responsible for all post contract signing responsibilities for implementation, adoption and identifying upsell or cross-sell opportunities (renewals and closing upsell/cross-sell isn’t my focus). Along with the above, I am also responsible for CSAT, referencability, acting as the Voice of the Customer, essentially we wear many hats, as most CSMs do!
1. Start Your Week Right
My Monday mornings typically start with reviewing my upcoming week. I have a couple hours blocked on my calendar for meeting prep – I usually plan for the week on Monday mornings and reassess deliverables and progress on Thursday mornings. Since I support customers from the Pacific time zone through Eastern EMEA, I have weekly or bi-weekly meetings on my calendar from early to late in the day. Depending on what stage a customer is in their journey, I may have multiple meetings a week. However, these meetings are not just coffee hours, so I need time to prepare for the meeting and time to follow up afterwards to ensure my notes and tasks are all documented and I make it a point to block that time in my calendar. It is also super important for me to plan email response times so I don’t feel pressured to respond during my customer meetings (and avoid those embarrassing moments when caught!). Having said that, I also don’t want to spend all my evenings catching up!
2. Day-by-Day Drill Down
With my week’s plan all chalked out, I can now take a closer look at my day. What meetings do I have today? Did I finish all my open tasks or at least have updates for today’s customer meetings? While prepping for my meetings, I review each of my customers’ health scores. Has anything changed that I haven’t already been notified of? Probably a little neurotic on my end since we have alerts for changes in health, but I can drill down into the health scores to see which KPIs are impacting the score change and by how much. With our latest release, I can now see my health scores over time, which will help me as I continue working with each customer! I review the timeline, my previous notes, open tasks, and support tickets to make sure I understand what is happening in my customers’ world. I also check my customers’ usage, look in their instance to see if everything looks good, jobs are processing, etc. Though there are a lot of tactical and often reactive items in weekly meetings, I like to also keep the long term goals in sight and help the customers utilize more features within the platform. Last prep item for these meetings is to begin to fill in one of the meeting templates with my agenda discussion items and ticket review, so I don’t forget to address anything! Just like that, half of my notes are already done! All is left is to fill in new items the customer brings up or we uncover during our discussions.
3. Gear up for EBRs
Prep for Executive Business Reviews is similar to daily meeting prep, though it requires you to start much earlier! I use one of our pre-built EBR templates within Strikedeck to pull in all the basics, but then I modify it to review the full period. This takes more time since we typically have a broader audience, likely including executives. Understanding exactly who will be participating drives the type of information to include, as executives prefer the high level views, trends, ROI, etc, rather than the tactical details. These discussions are typically more strategic in nature as you can look to tie platform adoption to customer goals, focus on customer use cases for product enhancement and help your customers solve problems.
Frankly, I do really love the Strikedeck UI! Our Customer 360 and individual customer dashboards provide a comprehensive, single-pane view of my customers. Since we are bringing in data from multiple sources, I only have to log in to Strikedeck for my single source of truth. Even though I get daily notifications from the system for outstanding tasks and what is on tap for the day, I really like to focus on seeing everything within the platform itself.
Looking at my dashboard, I have visibility into:
- Summary view of key information represented visually in charts and graphs
- Customer information such as contracts, opportunities and contacts
- Information related to customer segments, renewals, product usage or support tickets
- System recommendations & notifications, NPS and CSAT scores
- Progress reports on all tasks, workflow recipes, and playbooks in operation
- Fast access to Strikedeck tools such as Tasks, Notes, Calendar, Feedback, etc.
- Trend and cohort data
4. Automate My Day-to-Day
I haven’t really talked about playbooks and workflow recipes, as they work behind the scenes for me, but they do play a critical part in my day. Without those automations, there would be a lot more for me to track and take action on. Strikedeck’s automation capabilities help keep my day efficient. Thanks to playbooks and workflow recipes that send me alerts of new tasks and notify me to take action based on the trigger criteria, I’m always in the know and this leaves me sufficient time for proactive activities and strategic planning.
Strikedeck’s playbooks are a group of related actions (automated activities by the platform, such as sending an email or alert) or tasks (assignments to an internal team member to take action). Workflow recipes are the triggers – they can take a single action such as sending an email or launching a playbook. Both playbooks and workflow recipes are set up for a broad set of customers, either a specific segment or all customers across the board. A CSM can also create a Gameplan, which is similar to a playbook, but focused on particular activities as related to a specific customer. For instance, I may have a customer with a unique set of challenges that I need to develop specific tasks or activities to address. This can be done behind the scenes for just me, or it may be something I co-develop with a customer to address their specific needs. But once defined, the platform again helps me stay on top of the plan with assigned tasks and automated system actions!
At the end of my day, I like to spend time reviewing my meetings and activities, make sure I complete my notes and add my tasks for follow-up. It is always nice to close out the reactive items, as those are daily irritants for my customers. It is so much more fulfilling to help them solve bigger problems and get more value out of the platform they’ve invested in! Striving towards happy, satisfied customers keeps me motivated to get up each day!