The Customer Success Professional's Handbook

Hardback by Ashvin Vaidyanathan, Ruben Rabago

The definitive “Customer Success Manager How-To-Guide” for the CSM profession from Gainsight, who brought you the market-leading Customer Success

The Customer Success Manager has become a critical asset to organizations across the business landscape. As the subscription model has spread from the cloud and SaaS to more sectors of the economy, that pivotal role will only grow in importance. That’s because if you want to compete and thrive in this new environment, you need to put the customer at the center of your strategy. You need to recognize you’re no longer selling just a product. You’re selling an outcome. Customer Success Managers (CSM) are committed to capturing and delivering those outcomes by listening to their customers, understanding their needs, and adapting products and services to drive success. Although several existing resources address the customer success imperative, there is no authoritative instruction manual for the CSM profession—until now.

The Customer Success Professional’s Handbook is the definitive reference book for CSMs and similar roles in the field. This practical, first-of-its-kind manual fills a significant gap in professional customer success literature, providing the knowledge every CSM needs to succeed—from the practitioner level all the way to senior leadership. The authors—acknowledged experts in building, training, and managing Customer Success teams—offer real-world guidance and practical advice for aspiring and experienced CSMs alike. The handbook is written by practioners for practioners. An indispensable resource for front-line Customer Success Managers, this much-needed book:

  • Demonstrates how to build, implement, and manage a Customer Success team
  • Helps new CSMs develop their skills and proficiency to be more employable and grow in their careers
  • Provides clear guidance for managers on how to hire a stellar CSM
  • Presents practical tactics needed to drive revenue growth during renewal, expansion, and customer advocacy opportunities
  • Explains proven methods and strategies for mentoring CSMs throughout their careers
  • Offers valuable insights from Gainsight, the Customer Success Company, and the broader customer success community with more than a dozen of the industry’s most respected leaders contributing their perspectives 

Currently, with over 70,000 open positions, Customer Success Manager in one of the fastest-growing jobs in the world. The Customer Success Professional’s Handbook: How to Thrive in One of the World's Fastest Growing CareersWhile Driving Growth For Your Company will prove to be your go-to manual throughout every stage of your CSM career.

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Format: Hardback, 288 pages Language: English
Dimension: 158 x 28 x 231mm ISBN10: 1119624614
Weight: 476g ISBN13: 9781119624615
Publication Date: 02 Jan 2020 Publisher: Wiley


ASHVIN VAIDYANATHAN is the Chief Customer Officer at Gainsight—the Customer Success Company. Ashvin started at Gainsight as a Customer Success Manager and spent many of his early years at Gainsight building new and innovative processes. Prior to Gainsight, Ashvin was at McKinsey & Company consulting with companies on Marketing, Sales and Customer Experience transformations. When not at Gainsight, Ashvin is an advisor to several companies on the subjects of Customer Success and Customer Experience.

RUBEN RABAGO is Gainsight's Chief Strategist. He launched Pulse+, a refreshed continuation of the world's largest education program for Customer Success professionals and provides curriculum guidance to universities. Ruben also leads Gainsight's community outreach intended to elevate diversity in the profession. He was one of Gainsight's first CSMs and has more than 20 years of experience growing customer teams in traditional and SaaS-based companies, and currently serves as advisor to Customer Success professionals around the globe.


Alan Armstrong, CEO, Eigenworks

Carine Roman, Global Head of Customer Success at LinkedIn Talent Solutions

Chad Horenfeldt, VP of Client Success, Updater

Chrisy Woll, VP of Customer Success, CampusLogic

David Kocher, VP of Customer Success, GE Digital

Easton Taylor, Director of Customer Success, Gainsight

Eduarda Camacho, Executive VP, Customer Operations at PTC

Elaine Cleary, Principal CSM, Director of Education Services, Gainsight

Erin Siemens, SVP Client Success, ADP

John Sabino, Chief Customer Officer, Splunk

Jon Herstein, Chief Customer Officer, Box

Mary Poppen, Chief Customer Officer, Glint

Nadav Shem-Tov, Director of Teammate Success-CS, Gainsight

Patrick Eichen, VP Client Success, Cornerstone OnDemand

Stephanie Berner, Global Head of Customer Success at LinkedIn Sales Solutions

Travis Kaufman, VP of Product Growth, Gainsight


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