“It’s who you know” is the piece of advice everyone has for a job seeker. No matter the industry, it will always help to have a robust network. My years in account management and customer success have shown me that it’s the quality of those relationships, not the quantity, that matters most. Dale Carnegie’s How To Make Friends and Influence People has been used in many contexts, including one Ted Bundy, but it is still a go-to resource for me when it comes to forming valuable relationships. The advice may seem obvious or intuitive, but it’s surprising how difficult it can be.Fighting sophisticated bot fraud is a complicated business. With new threats emerging constantly, strong relationships with your partners is imperative. This war cannot be won alone.
People Who Need People
Everyone has a job, a boss, and something they want to do when they leave the office. We are all working towards a common goal at the end of the day. Being understanding of what people might be dealing with outside of their four walls humanizes you and creates connections between yourself and others. Not to mention, it’s always courteous to be cognizant of what other people have on their plate. When it comes to your team, this is a key strategy. Understanding what motivates others and how we can make their day easier is at the heart of effective account management. It’s about taking care of the people around you and wanting to help them have the best day, week, month they can.
At White Ops, we have employees and clients around the world. If I get a chance, I love to connect with people over a meal or coffee. Being remote can be isolating, so I make it a point to sit down with them. Also, you can learn a lot about a person by paying attention to their face and how they receive/relay information. That way the next time you work with them or you see them, you’ll have a better idea of how they will react.
This is a combination of a couple of Carnegie’s points: being genuinely interested in other people and being a good listener. The Customer Success team works with folks across many industries, titles, job functions, etc. Each difficulty that arises, we have to approach with care. We use these skills to reduce the escalation of problems. We never want our partners to feel frustrated, and we never want to feel like we’re spending our time spinning our wheels. We can mitigate these feelings by building up trust. Whoever is at the other end of the phone, the email, or even the ticketing system - they should feel like they’re in good hands.
People like stories - they like hearing them, telling them, and even making them up. White Ops’ origin story is an interesting one: our president, Michael Tiffany, and our CEO, Tamer Hassan, were in the back of a sci-fi bookstore in Brooklyn when they came up with the idea to create a cybersecurity company that specialized in bot mitigation by disrupting the economics of cybercrime. While our name has changed (we are no longer named Bot Or Not), the values still stand. This mission goes beyond our co-founders and the White Ops humans, it permeates to our partners. They know that we don’t just talk the talk, because they also believe in our ability to clean up the internet for future generations.
We wanted to continue and improve upon this group feeling of doing something bigger than ourselves, so we created the White Ops User Council. This group shares their thoughts on our offerings, they learn more about the different parts of White Ops, and contribute their suggestions so we can continue to improve for them. This creates group consciousness. They connect with one another and build their own relationships, soon creating an even bigger network than before. Carnegie says that you should make people feel important, but do it sincerely. We sincerely want the people who buy into our mission to know each other, because we are all on the same page. We are all working together to make the internet a safer place.
Sometimes we get wrapped up in business jargon or tech issues and we forget that we are all just humans trying to do our best to make our mark in the world. Sometimes, we forget how good it feels to smile. And sometimes, we forget how good it feels to see someone smiling at you. Carnegie didn’t write these things to make anyone feel bad about how they come off or make it “sound easy,” but to remind people that we all have our own lives. We can choose to live in our own heads or reach across to another human and make a connection. You never know how that person can help you.