What’s the Role of a Coach in Support? Aren’t We All the Same?

This is one piece I’ve wrestled with. A lot.

Initially, I was against the idea of creating two distinct teams — part of me still is — but I’ve come to see a different perspective. Think about life this way: we’re really only amazing and successful at our top one or maybe two priorities. For example, if you gave me five major priorities, I’d be mediocre at all of them. I’m not talking about small things that can be completed quickly or with little effort. But one I think many of us can relate to is doing something like support our customers and code — at the same time. Or answer phones, write that KB article, QA test that same feature, and support and code to fix the resulting bugs. It might be possible in the theoretical…but it’s not only difficult, but we’re failing the whole way through. At best, we’re mediocre.

That’s why we found the top 3–4 priorities and formed them into two roles so each team can focus on the top 1–2 to really hone our craft and become thought leaders. Where Support focuses more on inbound conversations, Coaches identify outbound needs: those customers that need a bit of help, some encouragement, or those that need a bit more training. This is a symbiotic relationship where we tackle the problem from two different fronts. We’re all way more effective, we learn from each other, and we engage with many, many more customers no matter their style (prefer to reach out, would rather us start the conversation, etc.).

By doing it this way, we’ve hit great strides. We’ve found our rhythm. Coming from multiple vectors to attack churn, hit new engagement highs, and cultivate fans and disciples for future growth is key. Everyone has their gifts, talents, and strengths: let’s use these for the success of our customers.

One last thing: I don’t see one team as more valuable than another. That’d be like asking which of my kids I love more. All our teams are incredible, are absolutely necessary, and run a terrifyingly amazing job at building success for our customers.

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