Part 1. Filipino Talent: CJ’s Journey as a Customer Success Manager.

Part 1. Filipino Talent: CJ’s Journey as a Customer Success Manager.

We are publishing a series of stories written by our talented Filipinos at Ascendia Works. Ascendia Works is the business of building high-performing Filipino teams for our Australian and New Zealand SMB clients.

CJ, our first employee, shares her remarkable journey of resilience and growth. We are truly fortunate to have you on our team, CJ. Your unwavering dedication and professionalism are not only appreciated but also serve as a beacon of inspiration for us all.

After graduating from university with a degree in Business, I worked for three years for a Filipino company. I then transitioned to an international employer as a Customer Success Manager (CSM), working for an Australian organisation.

Transitioning to an international employer was initially a daunting experience as I had not interacted with Australians previously and had limited knowledge of their culture. I recall feeling pressured and anxious during my initial meeting. However, I was taken aback by the friendly communication style of Australians, and here are a few key takeaways I’ve gleaned on what’s essential when working with Australian clients and how to set yourself up for success.

  • Cultural Awareness: Understanding Australian business culture is critical. Australians value directness, honesty, and a casual yet professional approach. This understanding has been invaluable in building trust and rapport with my clients. What stands out to me is how effortlessly Australians engage in conversation. They don’t create an intimidating atmosphere; instead, they make you feel as if you’re chatting with an old friend. They’re open about their day, their meals, and their families. This friendly approach has made it easier for me to engage with them comfortably and assist them with our product whenever needed. Working with Australians, I’ve grown to appreciate their prioritisation of work-life balance. Despite their hardworking nature, they tend to avoid overtime. Additionally, they respect personal time, refraining from contacting you during rest days or leaves until you return to work.
  • Effective Communication: Australians value straightforward communication. It’s crucial to address their concerns promptly and provide regular updates whenever they are needed.
  • Reliability: Australians appreciate reliability and punctuality. As Filipinos, we’re accustomed to the concept of “Filipino Time” as a common excuse for running late. However, Australians have a different approach. They prioritise punctuality for meetings and are very precise about ending them on time. As a Customer Success Manager, it’s crucial to establish an agenda for meetings with them. This ensures clarity about the meeting’s purpose and allows them to prepare in advance. Australians are very appreciative. They’ll appreciate how quickly you can help them resolve their technical issues with your product, building trust that you’re their go-to person whenever they need assistance.
  • Proactive Engagement: It’s essential to anticipate client needs and offer proactive solutions to foster long-term partnerships. Australians value proactiveness. They’ll appreciate the updates and emails you send to help them. They greatly value any assistance you extend to them, whether a small favour or the simplest tasks. Even the smallest gesture does not go unnoticed, as they recognise and appreciate your efforts in supporting them.

With nearly three years of experience working with Australians, I’ve appreciated their personality more, especially the daily “How are you?” greeting. It has become my morning routine. As I engage with my second Australian client under Ascendia Works, my initial impression of Australians remains the same as that of my first client. They are all bubbly, friendly, and remarkably easy to work with. I have been supported well throughout my onboarding and am a valued team member.

Transitioning to an international role has been enriching. It has enabled me to use my diverse background and skills to tackle new challenges and opportunities. I look forward to further developing my skills and experience in customer success and my career.