In a career spanning 25 years, Jasmine Gray, Customer Success Team Manager APAC at cloud based telephony company Aircall, has applied her formula for customer success and experience to a wide variety of roles across multiple organisations. Mark Atterby talks to Jasmine Gray, about her career and what she has learnt about helping customers succeed.
Mark Atterby (MA): Jasmine can you please provide an overview of your current role at Aircall?
Jasmine Gray (JG): I’m the Customer Success Team Manager for APAC at global cloud phone solution company Aircall. In my current role, I oversee a team of customer success specialists, implementing customer success strategies designed to optimise the experience of Aircall’s 1000+ APAC customers with the company. We are a revenue-driving team, meaning that we are responsible not only for customers’ satisfaction and loyalty, but also for ensuring that we adjust our support and offer as their business changes, grows and scales.
The team’s role is about understanding our customers and how we can help them grow their business. Aircall is a cloud-based phone system that integrates with more than 100 other business applications and solutions from CRM to e-commerce platforms, and although people essentially come to us to optimise their telephony, there’s a range of things that we do that can really add value for the customer. We also regularly ask them their key developments in the next 3 – to 6 months and look if there’s any aspect we can help them with. If they’re looking to recruit a couple more team members, is there anything we can do to help them add those new people?
MA: Can you describe your career path from its beginnings to where it led you today?
JG: I started my career at McDonald in a customer-facing position and party planner, which led me to work in hospitality for 8 years, including in high pressure environments. In 2007, I co-founded Hidden Door Experiences with my husband, a company specialised in team-building event planning for organisations. In parallel, I held customer success roles at shopping platform Wish, and donation marketplace Givar, before joining Aircall in 2021.
My career spans a diversity of B2C and B2B sectors and experiences, but customer service, satisfaction, and essentially building memorable experiences for them have been at the heart of every position I held, and is the root of my customer obsession and expertise.
MA: From your various roles what is the most important thing that you have learnt about customer experience and success?
JG: My most important lesson is that no matter which industry customer success professionals are in, they should never lose sight that they are dealing with people and must have the ability to connect with people at a human level. Empathy, perception and a solid set of other soft skills are necessary to step into another person’s shoes, understand what they are going through, and adjust your responses accordingly.
It’s increasingly important not to lose sight of being human. The faced pace environment we operate in matched with the often repetitive nature of the work and the increasing obsession with technology, data and automation are all threatening to “dehumanise” the customer experience.
It doesn’t mean we can’t leverage technology, it is important to deliver personalised experiences at scale and optimise workflows. But we have to ensure there is a balanced blend, and that the human interaction happens at the right moment in the customer’s journey.
This also applies to customer success leaders in the way they manage their teams. Customer success can be a challenging environment, and we need to be having regular face-to-face conversations to make sure our people feel supported and know that their manager understands their pain points and knows how to bring value to their role and future aspirations.
It is critical that we take time to mentor and grow the leaders of tomorrow.
Jasmine is speaking at the Customer Show Virtual Edition on Thursday 27th October.