From the Q-mmunity
Reflections: Slow down and empathize
Throughout December and January we will be sharing Reflection stories from some of our Qualtricians. These stories reflect on the last year and beyond — recognizing the good and the bad, the struggles and the successes. Today we are featuring a story by Arielle in Customer Success.
My name is Arielle, and I’m a Principal Customer Success Manager on the Covered West team, based out of our Seattle Headquarters. Something I love about Customer Success is that our role is never one thing – sometimes we’re leading strategic discussions with our customers about how to lead their experience management programs; other days, we’re building business cases and negotiating contracts with our Sales counterparts; and sometimes, we’re deep in the product trenches, working closely with our Technical Account Managers, Engineers and Product teams to improve the experience for our customers. All of it works toward the same goal of delivering an outstanding experience for our enterprise customers.
Is there a project or something that had a big impact on your and your team this year?
One of my customers is one of our top 20 CX accounts, and they’ve been with Qualtrics for over 5 years. As a result, they’ve not only seen many iterations of Qualtrics, but they’ve also had a whole range of engagements. In an effort to show up as #one-team, we brought together all of the major teams that have touched the account during our end of year customer business review meeting with their team in Broomfield, Colorado: Sales, CS, TAMs, Engineering, Solution Architects, Delivery, and Product all showed up for the meeting to discuss how we could all improve and mature the relationship. Since then, our teams have been so much better aligned and even when things don’t go quite as planned, the client and our team better understand what the other team expects so we are able to reach a better outcome every time.
What are you most proud of in 2022?
This year was a building year for the Covered West team – we recruited 8 people and brought a couple more over from other CS teams across Qualtrics! Our team then split into two teams, and although I still felt very new, I was suddenly one of the most tenured members of the Covered West 2 team, which put me in an exciting position to mentor others as they joined our team. After mentoring a couple team members as they onboarded, I was then asked to help lead our team’s office hours, where I not only share my own experience, but I also learn so much from my other teammates. It’s been really fun to be part of building a new team of CS Reps at Qualtrics, and despite more than 80% of the team being at Qualtrics for less than a year, we’re putting up great NRR numbers, so I couldn’t be more proud of what we’re achieving.
2022 has been quite the year, if there's one thing you'll remember it for what will it be?
2022 was a rollercoaster! Unfortunately, at the beginning of the year, my family lost a couple of very important people, and when I needed to step away to support my family, Qualtrics showed up to support me. I am far too type-A to ever feel good canceling workstreams and losing the progress we’re making, even when things are going sideways for me personally, and I was overcome with so much gratitude when my sales and TAM counterparts, plus my CS leadership, all stepped up to help me keep all of the plates spinning. I came back to work and found very little that had stopped in its tracks. This moment, not more than 8 months into my time at Qualtrics, really showed me what Qualtrics stands for as a company.
Moving into 2023, what lessons will you be taking with you from this year?
To echo the XM Institute, empathize! Life throws so many curve balls, and experience management isn’t heart surgery, so it’s okay to slow down and empathize with your coworkers and customers in the moments that matter… which ironically, is exactly how to do experience management the right way. Meeting others where they are, and taking a moment to put yourself in their shoes, to feel what they’re feeling, in order to figure out a solution together is often exactly what’s needed to address an experience gap.
Qualtrics is best when we show up as #one-team! Every time I have coordinated our various teams to show up together, unified by a common theme, for the customer, those meetings have been most successful. Zig and Brian shared an analogy about rowing recently in one of our TGITs, when the rowing team achieves its “swing.” This idea is exactly what I’m referring to – when everyone is moving in the same direction, at the same pace, and our clients can feel the positive effect.
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