Leading Customer Success in a B2B Business, With Jose Vergara – CB019

Leading Customer Success

Episode Overview

There’s confusion oftentimes in CX work about “customer success” vs. “customer experience.” Are they synonyms? Do they mean very different things? What does it all mean for a CCO?

Jose Vergara is the Chief Customer Officer of McKesson Medical Imaging. McKesson (the parent company) is a Fortune 15 company and has been a leader in the health care space for years. They have a number of different business lines and models, and Medical Imaging is one of those.

In this fascinating talk, Jose debunks not only his role — but the actions that define a successful customer success driven transformation and movement.

About Jose

Jose Vergara Jeanne Bliss PodcastIn his current role at McKesson, Jose is responsible for leading customer success across North America and the EU. He’s also in charge of leading the creation of the division’s Customer Success Strategy while leading functional areas including Logistics, Production and Support, Operations and Consistency of Experience.

Prior to this, Jose was Enterprise VP of Imaging Support and Customer Experience, where he was responsible for 51% of the company’s total revenue generated through maintenance contracts and support service offerings.

 

Jose’s path through this work

Jose came up through the ranks of many large organizations first leading customer service departments, then customer experience.  

He defines customer success like this:

  • What do customers see as the value that the company provides?
  • What metrics are tied to that?
  • How do we turn that into operations?

Those three questions, to him, are the essence of customer success work.

The problem with those three questions, however, is … 

Many organizations aren’t able to quickly articulate this or get through that three-step process.

To ensure that value creation and delivery could become a reality for his division, Jose concocted an unique approach. 

Jose’s approach at McKesson

First, he led the organization through the maze of determining exactly which customers they had to prove value to.  

Then he built the skills for a special unit reporting to him to execute something he calls “white-boarding” where the client and a customer success strategist create the end state of what their success would look like and the scorecard to measure and track its achievement.  

In our conversation we speak in depth about this path and how, one year out (he only assumed his current role in April 2015), he is making progress in making this work a reality.  

Skill Sets, Compensation, and Implementation

Of course, to do this really forward-thinking work, you need to change a lot of other factors about your business. McKesson, as noted above, is a major company on the Fortune 500. It certainly has resources, and that helps. But to shift how your CCO division works, you need to think differently about three core areas:

  • The skill sets you’re looking for
  • How you salary-band people and how they can move through those bands
  • How ideas are implemented and developed

Without a focus on changing those three bullet points, even some of the most strategic CCO work will collapse — because then you’re not getting the right people or offering the right incentives.

Jose is taking a very thought provoking approach in leading customer success for McKesson, and those seeking to advance in this type of role will learn quite a bit not only in actions to take but in the attitudinal shift required in the organization to get there.

We’ll be back throughout this week with a few more posts, and then be back next Tuesday with a new podcast.

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