The success of any Saas business depends on one thing: Renewing and expanding customer contracts.
But the problem is, nearly all of us struggle to predict churn. We don’t know what our renewal and retention rates will be.
And if you’re continually surprised by churn? You’ve got trouble. Your level of predictability isn’t where it needs to be. And you’ve got to fix customer success so you can:
> Land the right customers
> Renew more customers each year
> Keep customer longer
> Drive down your customer acquisition costs
> Create the best success team in your industry
...And add predictability to your renewals and expansions.
Because if you know your customers will stick around…
>You can create more services for them.
>You’ll have the audience.
>You’ll have the feedback.
>And you’ll have the budget.
Can I get an Amen?
Nearly all of us struggle to predict churn.
We don’t know what our renewal and retention rates will be.
And if you’re continually surprised by churn?
You’ve got trouble.
So you deal with turn-style clients. In one year, out the next. You do your best to keep them from walking out.
Except it’s often too little, too late. Because you didn’t develop strategic relationships. And your product didn’t deliver on the value promised.
It's not your fault though. You’re too busy putting out fires while trying to produce what can feel like miracles.
Don’t feel bad, this happens to nearly every SaaS company... until they make a change and make Customer Success a priority and train their teams to...
> Build better bonds with customers
> Provide a world-class customer experience
> Focus on retention
> Eliminate consumer frustrations
> Be PROACTIVE
From the minute customers arrive, to the minute they renew, teams with bulletproof Customer Success programs create a clear path to stability and predictability in their renewals and expansions.
And if you’re not doing that now?
You should watch this video:
One of the most inspiring and amazing networking groups I've ever been a part of...
On a cold and rainy January evening in 2014 in San Francisco, I attended the first ever Supper Club meeting for Customer Success leaders. I was a newly minted VP of Customer Success and couldn’t wait to meet other CS leaders. I remember having some serious butterflies in my stomach as I didn’t quite know what was going to happen.
As it turned out, rain caused havoc with traffic all over the city (no surprise) and a number of the attendees who planned on coming couldn’t make it. So, 5 of us got to know each other very well, enjoyed an amazing meal together, and talked about the biggest challenges we faced as CS leaders. We referred to ourselves as the original Fab 5 :).
Back in 2014, there weren’t that many people with the official title of VP of Customer Success, even in San Francisco. CS had certainly started but it was a very small field at the time.
To be able to connect in a meaningful way with other CS leaders who were way more senior than I was at the time, had a profound impact on me. This Supper Club group got together once a month for the next 15 or so months and I did everything humanly possible to ensure I was at each event. I knew that I would learn a tremendous amount and get to know some incredible people if I made it a priority.
When you have an opportunity to learn from experts, you do everything humanly possible to put yourself in the right place at the right time.
Within a few short months word got out around the CS leadership community and everyone wanted to attend. Accepting the invitation on Monday mornings became a competition and if you didn’t respond within minutes, all the seats were taken. I knew the time the invitation would come and every month I waited and refreshed my email until it appeared and then clicked to book as fast as I could. It was quite a rush.
A large part of my CS leader network came from those dinners and I’m eternally grateful to Don MacLennan and Catherine Blackmore who organized them through Bluenose Analytics.
Network - Other leaders you can trust and depend on as you accelerate your leadership.
Knowledge - Access to best practices that will help you build your system and leadership reputation.
Expertise - Access to experts who can help translate best practices into your environment.
I started my Customer Success career as a CSM and worked my way to team lead, Director and VP. When I was VP, I had the opportunity to put my system in place from scratch and within a year, I was no longer needed on a day to day basis. My system was running without me. This was satisfying and terrifying all at the same time. I vividly remember thinking to myself - "great, now I have to go find another job..."
It was at this time that I decided to leave my job, salary, benefits and team as VP and start Glide Consulting. When I first decided to go out on my own, there was no path - literally. I was the first Customer Success leader to start a consulting firm. I had no idea who I would work with or what types of projects I would do but I knew that if I focused on what I was most talented to do and shared my passion for CS with others, I would be successful.
Since 2015, I’ve had incredible experiences working with everyone from early stage startups to growth stage to Fortune 500 companies. Through these experiences as a consultant and my time in the seat as a CSM, Manager, Director and VP - I’ve developed a signature system for building a world-class Customer Success organization that delivers Predictable Renewals.
Customer Success is the linchpin in a predictable renewals system as your team has more influence over your customer experience than any other part of your organization.
It takes a village and Customer Success can not pull off herculean feats and perform miracles (I’ve been the recipient of those expectations too), however, Customer Success must be a smooth-running machine if the organization stands a chance at long-term sustainability and growth.
When I have implemented this system, its existence has served as a change agent inside of the organization. Every part of your company wants to do things better and more efficiently but without an incredible model to follow, most leaders don’t make much progress and succumb to the daily fires that come up and dream of one day having time to “be more strategic”.
The teams I have built inside of organizations were always among the highest performing, if not the highest performing, in the company. The scores from employee engagement surveys were always at the top of the list and the employees were engaged. At every stop along the way, people from other teams would ask “how do you do that?”
Since 2015, I've been working exclusively as a consultant in the field of Customer Success. My work is high-touch 1:1 with my clients where it costs anywhere from $25k - $100k to work with me. I have never done any hourly work and have built an incredible list of client testimonials which I am very proud of...more on that below.
There are a few things I know for certain:
After spending years in the trenches, leading teams and consulting with dozens of companies from early stage startups to Fortune 500 firms, I have put together the most effective way for you to learn my system and get the coaching you need to put it into action for your organization.
No longer do we have to be within some physical boundary to work together. Through this program, we will be working together across the world! I am exceptionally excited about this because while I love being in person, it just isn't feasible to have the impact I want to have for years to come.
Here's a list of what's in the program...
The Predictable Renewals System is broken down into 4 primary areas - the 4 P's - People, Purpose, Process and Platform.
Each of the topics below is covered in a video. When you work through an area, you are going to have questions about how the best practice applies to your specific situation. That's where the 3 months of group coaching comes into play. On the weekly calls, we will discuss your situation and workshop how to make everything come to life for you.
Module 1 - Introduction
1 - Start Here - How to get the most out of this course
Module 2 - People
1 - Why are predictable renewals so important
2 - What type of company are you in?
3 - What to do if your company doesn't believe in CS as a philosophy
4 - Built to serve vs Built to sell
5 - Early Mid and Late Stage Companies
6 - Which CSM profile is right for me
7 - What are the roles and responsibilities for my CSM hire
8 - 5 Key Skills for any Customer Success Hire
9 - Base Compensation for CSMs
10 - Variable Compensation - Team Based Pros and Cons
11 - Variable Compensation - Book of Business
12 - Variable Compensation Payout
13 - Hiring Process for CS Professionals
14 - CSM Onboarding Program
15 - Team Management - 1 on 1s
16 - CS Strategic Planning - Annual to Weekly
Module 3 - Purpose
1 - Purpose Overview
2 - What is Purpose
3 - Why Purpose is so important
4 - How to define your Purpose
5 - What do you do with your Purpose
6 - Transitioning from Peer to Manager
Module 4 - Process
1 - Process Overview
2 - Annual Lifecycle Overview
3 - Annual Customer Lifecycle
4 - 4 Key Components of a Successful Sales Handoff
5 - The 4 Onboarding Must Haves
6 - Kickoff deck walkthrough part 1
6 - Kickoff deck walkthrough part 2
7 - Business Review Must Haves
8 - Business Review Part 1 - Reinforce the Value
9 - Business Review Part 2 - Goals
10 - Business Review Goals - Why are goals important
11 - Business Review Part 3 - Find out where you stand
12 - Business Review Deck Walkthrough
13 - Renewals
14 - 3 Common Renewal Pitfalls
15 - Core Operational Processes Introduction
16 - Account Planning
17 - Account Planning - Tracking and Challenges
18 - Escalations
19 - Customer Health Score
20 - Team Activity Tracking
21 - Team Metrics and Reporting
Module 5 - Platform
1 - Platform Introduction
2 - How Do I Know if I am Ready for a CS Platform
3 - How to get ready for a CS Platform
4 - How to ensure a successful rollout of a CS Platform
5 - How to gain buy-in and drive accountability
6 - How to use a platform to build relationships internally
“Thanks to Nils' partnership and guidance, I've made remarkable progress towards the goal of making Oracle Marketing Cloud the destination for driven Customer Success Professionals.
The 4 P’s framework has helped me transform the Oracle Marketing Cloud Global Customer Success team in record time.
The investment I’ve made by working with Glide Consulting has already paid for itself many times over."
“Through weekly coaching conversations with me and the CX management team, he helped us unwind the challenges and gain better clarity on where to focus.
Bottom line - Nils is a thought leader, domain expert, and outstanding individual. His guidance has better positioned our CX team to thrive in our next stage of growth.
Great CX is critical component of successful SaaS, and Nils knows the formula to building great CX."
“When I was not being completely honest with myself or if I wasn’t pushing myself in a specific area, Nils held me accountable and I made the shift. After each session, I took away action items that I had defined and knew exactly what to do to move forward in the area we discussed.
My effectiveness as a CS leader has grown as a result of the coaching experience with Nils and I would highly recommend him"
"...his ability to rapidly understand the complexity of our business and our specific needs stood out.
He's also able to focus his efforts to rapidly help us set direction and execute our projects (rather than run his default consulting playbook).
I'd recommend anyone thinking about improving their customer success and renewal business talk to Nils.."
“...he helped bring clarity and a number of my open questions, and challenged me to double-down on my leadership skillset.
Creating meaningful change when inheriting a new team with set processes is never easy. I left our engagement feeling confident, focused, and empowered.
I would highly recommend Nils as a coach, trainer, friend, partner - it's one of the best growth investments I have made."
Creator of the Predictable Renewals Program
I've done everything from software engineering to selling copiers door-to-door for Xerox. It turns out I was terrible at those jobs but I never gave up searching for where I fit. Thankfully, I found my home with Customer Success. I've been a CSM, Manager, Director, VP and Consultant. Customer Success is the only thing I do.
My #1 Strength is called Maximizer - what this means is that I see strengths in others often times before they see it in themselves. Bringing awareness of these strengths to others is my fuel for life. I have taken this strength to the limit and built my entire business around just what I am naturally talented to do. I want to share this gift with you. This is where I get my passion, energy and drive.
Nils is a customer success industry expert. He’s been a CSM, Manager, Director, VP inside of B2B SaaS businesses. Since founding Glide Consulting in January of 2015, Nils has worked with some of the best in SaaS to help them build world-class customer success teams. Customer Success is Nils’ passion and his entire life is built around helping others become great customer success leaders. The content of this course and the coaching comes straight from Nils’ work with his high-end clients in a dedicated 1:1 relationship.
Nils is also trained as an executive coach and has an MBA in Management and Organizational Behavior. When it comes to helping his clients to build incredible CS teams, Nils is an expert in all areas of CS and leadership.
It’s great that you don’t have a churn problem right now, but how confident are you that your system for Customer Success is the reason for your low churn problem?
OKRs are great and a very important piece of your leadership puzzle. However, if you haven’t gone up to the 50k foot view of everything CS, how do you know if your OKRs are focused on the right things?
Who is responsible for your customers from the point of sale on today? There has to be someone responsible for overseeing what happens with customers after they are sold.
A member of your team can go through the course/coaching and begin implementing the most critical elements of an effective CS program.
One of the key areas of the course is hiring - Nils goes in depth on everything you need to know to hire great Customer Success professionals.
Nils’ program represents best in class for Customer Success from a foundation perspective. Any CS leader that comes in should be focused on these areas and if you have some of them in place already by the time they are hired, their onboarding and effectiveness will be even more accelerated.
The reality is that a new CS leader will have a million things on their list and if we can help you remove some of those things in advance, they’re going to be more effective sooner.
What level of CS leader are you looking to bring in?
The question you have to ask yourself is how much time do I have to spend gathering/processing and translating the things other people say to your situation?
This program is a fast-track to take you through the most important foundational elements of Customer Success. The material has been proven by Nils as a practitioner and consultant. Accelerate your learning and growth with the predictable renewals program.
One thing I know to be true is that as a CS leader, you don't have the luxury of time. You must implement a system that delivers predictability in renewals and expansions in order to have any security in your position.
For any leader considering an investment in their personal and professional growth, there are always only two options - invest or don't. The best of the best leaders in the world are always concerned with one primary thing - investing in themselves as the return on that investment is the greatest you will ever realize.
With the Predictable Renewals program, you have two choices, invest and accelerate your growth with me or kick the can down the road.
Yes! Time zones may be challenging for the group coaching calls depending on where you are but you'll always have access to the recordings.
That's completely fine, just know that Nils' schedule and commitments are increasing every month and it may take several months of being on his waitlist before you can work 1:1. It would still be a good idea to book a call and let us know your intent to work 1:1.
Book a call with us and ask away.
The program is priced at a point where any company and leader serious about Customer Success can make an investment that will be returned many times over.
P.S.: The greatest rewards are presented to those that take the greatest risks and rise out of their comfort zone to conquer new skills and add more value to themselves and ultimately their company.
Are you going to accelerate your growth or kick the can down the road? I know which one I'd choose, how about you?