Key Responsibilities: What Does a Chief Customer Officer Do?
The chief customer officer oversees all customer-facing departments, including but not limited to:
- Customer Success
- Customer Service and Support
- Customer Experience
- Customer Operations
- Professional Services
The CCO is part of the executive board as the one responsible for implementing and overseeing a customer-first approach throughout the organization. They do this by developing and approving ideas to improve people, processes, and systems that directly affect the customer experience.
While the title may vary, the CCO is still the go-to person for all customer-related inquiries, concerns, and initiatives.
- Understanding the customer and promoting a customer-first approach throughout the entire organization, prioritizing customer-facing departments
- Kickstarting voice-of-the-customer programs and ensuring efficient analytics and reporting to promote a data-driven approach to the needs, wishes, and wants of the customer base.
- Assisting all customer-facing departments in their workflows and providing feedback on strategies, reports, tactics, and more.
- Stepping in to resolve escalated customer support requests and collaborating with service, support, and success teams to ensure memorable and positive customer outcomes regardless of their issues.
- Strategizing, delegating, and collaborating on customer success initiatives and programs that drive retention, loyalty, and growth.
- Approaching customer relations with a business-development perspective, keeping an eye out for any opportunities, and collaborating with expansion, upsell, and growth managers to successfully act on opportunities and grow the business.
- Listening to customers and acting on their input in a diplomatic and analytic manner, prioritizing requests by relevancy, urgency, and importance.
- Listening to internal team members and finding ways to best serve the customers while maintaining efficient internal processes.
- Finding the narratives behind the metrics – being able to review reports and correlate data sets to determine the story behind the numbers to create an accurate picture of the customer behind the scenes.
- Having final decision power on customer-facing initiatives and ideating to better serve the customers’ needs.
Skills and Competencies
Here are the necessary skills to be a good Chief Customer Officer:
- 5-10 years of experience leading a customer-facing department with proven strategic planning skills, revenue goal achievements, and experience implementing or overseeing a customer-first approach. Many businesses ask for 10+ years of management experience for this role.
- An MBA or related graduate or post-graduate degree is often required, with a customer service one being ideal, on top of an undergrad degree in a related field. Customer success courses and certifications are nice-to-have, but experience in the field is much more important and often substitutes traditional education.
- Expert empathy skills with high emotional intelligence, and experience in applying those skills in a business context.
- Strong communication skills and the ability to follow customer narratives to understand their point of view and transform and present those insights into workable strategies for customer success and business growth.
- Customer focus as a core principle throughout their professional activities.
- Deep understanding of customer service, customer experience, customer success, and customer operations.
- Advanced business experience and ability to create strategies, guidelines, and objectives and implement them while driving business growth and creating data-driven reports.
- Business development knowledge and, ideally, experience growing a business.
- Strong analytical and goal-oriented mindset backed by expert-level people and project management knowledge and skillset.
- Advanced IT&C knowledge and capabilities and ability to learn new software tools on the job and gain a deep understanding of business products and services.