Hands On Podcast: How genuine curiosity powers networking + The art of scaling team communication

by Bryan Offutt

John Gleeson - Hands On Podcast

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How genuine curiosity powers networking + The art of scaling team communication

John Gleeson is the VP of Customer Success at Motive (formerly KeepTruckin). He also runs the Customer Success meetup in San Francisco, so it’s no surprise that he’s extremely passionate about building meaningful relationships. In this episode of Hands On, John shares some of the lessons that have presented themselves throughout his varied life experience and how he’s applied those learnings to building teams, communities and larger group organizations. Join us and get to know John’s open attitude towards growth and how he paid for his MBA by creating a hockey school for adults.

Listen to Hands On on Spotify. Also available on Apple Podcast & Simplecast.

Jump straight into:

(04:13) - How a Customer Success role is similar to being the goalie in a hockey game. “Usually people don't worry about you too much until you let a goal in. Then there's a big red light over your head, and everybody wants to know what went wrong.”

(12:15) - Strategies from John’s life experience to establish strong and diverse relationships with people of all types. “I think it's like a lifelong pursuit. There might not be an immediate outcome to that relationship, but you know that there's a shared way that you can help each other.”

(15:46) - The Startup Journey: How John got the opportunity to lead the CS team at KeepTruckin. “They had a quarter of a million free users of their app that just loved what they were doing. These were truck drivers on the front lines. So there's clearly some market pull there.”

(20:00) - Scalable mediums and personal connection: John’s philosophy to overcoming challenges in team building. “I'm still learning how to protect my time so I can also do all of my work while still gaining that great anecdotal feedback that comes from making people feel like they're connected to our mission.”

(28:50) - Founding hockey school (for adults): How John’s passion project has impacted his CS career. “I learned that building businesses was actually really fun. I spent more time figuring out how to charge people online for the hockey school, build the website for that and do some marketing.”

(32:40) - Brands as People: If Customer Success was a person, what would it be like? “You kind of gotta be a little bit crazy to sign up for it because you end up actually having a really broad set of skills that you have to be good at.”

(36:37) - Crazy Points: Unconventional practices that make a difference inside KeepTruckin. “We invest in these passionate, smart people overseas and in the process we've been able to actually deliver something pretty special to our customers.”

In this post: Motive

Published — May 31, 2022