Kayako started in 2001, at the dawn of customer support, when it was frustrating or just not there. Fast forward to today, Kayako helps startups and Fortune 100 companies to charities and governments, teams of all sizes get better at delivering effortless customer service experiences.
We had a chance to talk to the person responsible for ensuring that Kayako users get the best experience with the product. Meet Gerardo Gonzalez, Director of operations at Kayako.
1. Tell us about yourself and your current position at Kayako
With 18 years of experience in technology, I am is responsible for delivering world-class customer support and professional services to bring the highest service value to our customers on our products. I have been part of ESW capital group for seven years and transitioned different functions for several of the products that are now part of our group. Before joining ESW I spent several years on software development and later on was responsible for leading technology functions and innovation initiatives for different business areas on consumer are telecom industries such as Phillip Morris International and Worldcom. I hold a Bachelors degree in Engineering and Telecom from The National Polythecting Institute in Mexico City.
2. What drew you to work in customer support?
I find it very enjoyable and challenging, it’s is a business area where you don’t stop coming up with new ideas on how to improve and the results are most of the times very tangible because we are talking about customer satisfaction.
3. What do you love about working in customer support, and which aspects do you find challenging? How do you deal with those challenges?
On our model, we are constantly importing new products into our support services, and something I always enjoy is making contrast on how former support org did things, taking learnings out of it and always improve our processes and best practices. The support world is often full of challenges, one of the biggest challenges I faced on this role is on how to make customers happy when the product you support is not at it’s best, it takes a lot to achieve that, and the key is with rock-solid support engineers, they need to master their products and have superb customer touch.
4. Do you have a best practice for dealing with angry/unhappy customers? What is it?
Key in those cases is to understand the real reason that is making a customer dissatisfied, a customer might be complaining about a bug on the product, but perhaps the real situation driving dissatisfaction could be a recent price increase. A mature support team must leverage on all existing tools to understand what is driving customer’s NPS, CSATs etc. reading all those indicators correctly most of the times should provide enough insight for support engineers on turning around customers.
Key in those cases is to understand the real reason that is making a customer dissatisfied.
5. If you could describe the Kayako support team in three words, what would they be?
I would say that the words that describe Kayako’s support team are: committed, knowledgeable, and metric’s focused.
6. Who do you admire and follow, why?
It’s hard to pick just one. I admire a lot of people in many different ways. Following many people gives you many different perspectives and new ideas.
7. What inspires you?
I like a good challenge. It’s common for people to fear obstacles but you have to learn to work your way around them. And that is what thrills me: delving into the matter and finding ways to solve the issue or do something the best way possible.
8. What do you like to do in your free time? How do you relieve stress?
Reading, writing and playing the guitar really help me grow as a person and recharge.