Next weekend is Thanksgiving in the United States. I have a lot to be grateful for, and I'm guessing you do, too.

Despite facing challenging economic times ahead, I know two things for sure:

  1. This, too, shall pass. What goes up must come down, and vice versa. These cycles are inevitable, and they don't last forever.
  2. What lies on the other end is rejuvenation and new growth. Much like a piece of land comes alive after a burn.

No matter what happens in the coming months, I'm choosing to keep this image in my mind, be grateful for the journey, and prepare myself and my team for future growth.

Now, let's talk about Elton John...

In April, I took my teenage daughter to her first concert. Elton John.

Two songs into his first set, the maestro left the piano bench and shuffled to the back of the stage, where he met a technician dressed in black.

He spoke a few words into his ear, quickly returned to his perch behind the keys, and began to speak.

"I apologize for the house lights. They aren't the ones we normally use, and we are having some trouble with them. We're working to correct that as soon as possible," he said.

Within moments lighting engineers resolved the issue, and the show continued without a hitch.

Elton John live in Columbia, SC on on April 20, 2022

Had Elton not said anything, the audience would have been none the wiser about the issue. After all, we were mesmerized by a living legend on the stage cranking out Benny and the Jets.

But Elton knew there was a problem, and he didn't let it go.

He cared enough about the experience that he stopped what he was doing - entertaining 25,000 people - asked his team to do better and apologized to his fans customers for the sub-par experience.

This story isn't about a rock and roll concert; it's about delivering a high-quality product. It's about excellence.

I'm guessing this wasn't the first time Elton sweated the small stuff in his 50-year career.

It's his modus operandi.

This got me thinking... am I addressing experience issues directly and in the moment with my team and my customers?

Are you?

Little adjustments make for big gains over months, quarters, and years.

Thanks, Elton, for the inspiration and great experience.


p.s. I let my daughter know that her first concert experience likely ruined her and that every concert she attends from now on will pale in comparison to what she witnessed that night in April.

💡 Weekly Favorites

Here are some of my favorite podcasts, blogs, and videos from the week:

  • The Problem with Customer Success. This is one of the best-articulated and honest assessments of customer success that I've ever seen. This article from my friend Rav Dhaliwal (former head of customer success, EMEA, at Slack) received much attention this week.
  • An interesting post on LinkedIn about the expanding remit of CS teams during the recession by Brook Simmons from Spekit. I believe this is a customer success leader's time to shine by driving business outcomes (especially retention) while balancing the needs of customers and team members.

Enjoy, and see you next Sunday.

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