We are continuing the “Get to Know oVice” series by introducing one of the key members of the global team – Maya, head of Global Customer Success. She has been part of the company since Day 1 and was hands-on involved in spreading the word about oVice across all channels. Now she is focused on helping oVice users make the most of the platform. Maya introduces new visitors to the features of virtual spaces and helps set up and brand offices and event venues.
Learning more about her impeccable work ethic during the customer success manager interview was extremely inspiring. Once you get to know Maya, you’ll firsthand realize not all heroes wear capes – some of them are fairies.
Tell us about yourself and your role at oVice.
My name is Maya and I work in customer relations (customer support and success). I’m used to wearing many hats at work so my responsibilities are broad. Mainly, I’m focusing on customer relations as a Global Customer Representative.
I joined oVice from the start of the project. We were nine or ten people working on the project back then. It was in 2020, right when lockdown orders were issued around the world.
Initially, I joined as a resources/content writer – I was in charge of PR, customer success, and website management. As is the case for emerging startups, everything was fast-paced. It was crazy but fun.
Now I settled into a single role – I handle customer relationships and focus on introducing prospects and onboarding new users to oVice.
What was your experience before joining oVice? How and why did you choose the company?
Before joining oVice, I dabbled in many positions – customer support, marketing, content writing, and design.
Since I worked at a different company managed by the CEO of oVice, I learned about the new project early on. I joined the team because, as the pandemic spread across the globe, the idea of working remotely became highly relevant and appealing.
What made you decide to start working in customer success? What aspects of your job do you find most challenging? And most rewarding?
At first, we were a small team so I was involved in many things. It was exciting yet stressful. I had to commit to “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” and learn how to multitask.
As the product grew, the team expanded as well – Aroua (Global Marketing Manager) joined the project. Then we expanded the content and sales teams and I could focus on customer success.
I chose customer success because I didn’t have much experience in marketing – setting up ads, monitoring analytics, and so on. On the other hand, I liked dealing with people and, at that time, I had already built relationships with customers and didn’t want to let go of the bonds we shared.
Challenging aspects? Dealing with time zones. When I was in Tunisia, I used to work in CET. At oVice, some teammates are working in the US, others – in Southeast Asia. I had to get to practice finding meeting slots that would match both mine and the client’s working hours.
Another challenging thing is talking to people from different cultures. There are a lot of things I had to consider, like the fact that Google Services are banned in China and so on. Adjusting to different accents took some time as well. Over time, I’ve gotten better at understanding customers and making myself clear – speaking slowly, choosing simple words, and showing instead of telling.
As for the most rewarding aspects, I would say 99% of people are kind and supportive. They appreciate my assistance and show a lot of love. Also, connecting with teammates taught me a lot – my Japanese colleagues helped me streamline Zendesk, HubSpot, and other tools.
2. Introducing oVice to prospects and clients
Every day, you talk to team leaders and introduce them to oVice. Which challenges do you see them face the most in working remotely/using a hybrid model?
A lot of teams coming to oVice were originally forced to work remotely because of the lockdown. They say: “We miss being in the office”, “We feel distant from our colleagues”. Managers miss having spontaneous conversations, grabbing lunch together, or reaching out to someone easily and quickly.
They aren’t happy with the fatigue of online meetings – some have a lot of conference calls and find little time to get deep work done.
For those who moved to hybrid, leveling the playing field for remote and on-site employees is a priority. Team leaders want equality between those working in the office and those working remotely. They need a system that gives both teams visibility and leaves no one excluded.
Global enterprises complain about a disconnect between branches in different locations. There’s miscommunication or no communication at all. So teams want to be integrated into one space. They look for unity.
Do you feel that, once the pandemic is over, there’s a chance people would come back to offices and there would be no need for a platform like oVice?
I’m seeing that people who’ve been using oVice for over 6 months, are used to the tool and they have seen a major change in productivity and collaboration. That’s why leaders who switch to oVice can scale down their spaces and find extra room for cost-cutting.
The best example is oVice itself because, while we do have an office, few people go there because we can work from a virtual office.
What kinds of teams tend to use oVice more and for what purposes?
We have a lot of tech teams or departments. They use oVice for project sprints to list milestones, daily tasks, and goals to accomplish. I see that oVice resonates with teams who rely on a lot of communication and collaboration to get things moving.
An excellent example of such a department is marketing because it requires a lot of collaboration. Also, marketers can use oVice as a marketing tool that connects them to customers.
The platform allows organizing webinars and events, adding your social media icons and banners, and having people come in and learn more about the product.
We also see a lot of oVice users in coaching because these professionals host a lot of webinars and training sessions. For them, exisitng tools are limiting and artificial, while oVice is the closest thing to real interactions. It feels organic, spontaneous, and fun – coaches love that.
Which strategies do you use to explain a complex product like oVice to people?
I explain what oVice is and how it works by showing examples of our clients using it. If people have questions, I share resources that give them answers. Also, I usually share my screen and show a prospect an example of a company that matches their profile using oVice.
I like showing potential clients how oVice helps handle daily tasks and what their space would look like.
If you had to describe oVice using three emojis, what would they be?
The office building emoji is straightforward – our key use case is virtual offices.
The chat bubble emoji symbolizes communication and collaboration – which are key priorities for oVice. We want to create an environment where talking to each other is as effortless as it would be in real life.
The crystal ball symbolizes creativity for me. In oVice, people can create whatever world they like – I get surprised all the time by how creative people are when using the platform. You’ll find someone working underwater, having an event in space, teaching in the desert, on an island, and so on.
Do you have tips for making the most out of the product? What practices have you seen managers implement successfully?
I want people to do as much as they can in their workspace. Even if they think they don’t need a whitelist, it’s good to add it, and see how it works – maybe you’ll use it eventually. I focus on experimenting with the static object page – it is useful if you want to save important files, make announcements, or brand your space.
Also, spending some time to customize your space helps set rules in the virtual office.
I see managers using emoji badges a lot. If you work at a global company and there are a lot of people working in different countries, teammates would add a flag representing where they come from and a little description about themselves.
Another popular tip is dividing your space into areas. I see people use a bulletin board, write down the name of the department, and attach it to different space areas so that people working in that department know where to sit.
Why do oVice customers appreciate the platform? Can you share some feedback?
I think that people love oVice because of the way the platform balances a professional and playful side. We want to shake up the monotony of office work – at the same time, we want to help team leaders build spaces where people can focus on work and collaboration.
Another thing is the pricing model. oVice users appreciate that paying for oVice is similar to paying rent for a physical space.
They are happy with regular feedback sessions and frequent releases – that makes them feel heard.
oVice team offers team leaders constant support – managing this is heavily your responsibility. How do you ensure availability and responsiveness?
Our support members are always available in the demo space in case someone comes in for help. We work in different time zones so we can cover a 24-hour support.
Some of our members also spend their working time in the demo space. I can easily reach out to them if someone has a technical question or has something to report!
What are the responsibilities of a Global CS lead at oVice? What are you working on right now?
I have to be in the tour space during working hours to support new visitors or clients who have issues or come in to ask questions. I am responsible for new client onboarding, helping them set up a space, consulting them, and managing tickets.
Internally, I onboard new employees to oVice, and explain the customer journey map, as well as other resources on customer success. I run onboarding simulations with teammates as well to see how they would work with a prospective customer.
I’m also creating resources we send to clients: examples of oVice use, how-to guides, and others.
oVice is an international company working with clients all over the world. That means you have a hectic meeting schedule. How do you structure your day to stay on top of everything?
My client meetings have the highest priority. Between an urgent task and a meeting, I would do the meetings first and then work on the tasks. If I need help with other tasks, I will ask for it.
I have my Calendly open twenty-four hours a day, except for Saturdays and Sundays.If a client requests a meeting on a weekend, I don’t mind, as that gives people more slots to book the meeting. I don’t have a structured working day but things come up all the time. This is how startups work – you never know what the day will bring At oVice, it’s impossible to get bored – there’s always something to do.
Lead generation is a crucial part of customer success management. What are your tips on converting first-time visitors into customers? Share some processes your team implemented to drive more sales.
Automations are important. People don’t like to wait: if your email is going to be sent an hour after a client submits a free trial, a prospect might never get back to you. That’s why I’m doing things as quickly as possible.
For example, if a client submits a free trial and creates a space, I am not going to wait until they schedule an onboarding meeting. I will just go into their space and introduce myself and do the onboarding for them if they are available.
Following up with the client is important as well. I follow up with the client at least three times a day. I check if they invited people to the space, let them know how to customize their space, and so on.
It’s also important to create as many resources as possible because you don’t want to get a client request and have no answer because you are missing a how-to guide or a presentation with oVice use case examples. We are creating as many resources as we can to share them with prospects and clients and help them learn more about oVice without having to search the web.
What tools do you use to help you in your work? How do you fit them into using oVice?
Slack is my main organization hub. I like it because I can integrate it with oVice and know when someone visits the tour space. I can track when someone sends me a message when I am away, and many other events.
Another tool I use from time to time is Zoom. We have a Zoom integration in oVice that I use with some clients. This way I can have meetings without having to leave oVice. Zapier is also helpful to build automations. Notion helps a lot with project management.
I’m very used to Figma for design because it is resource-efficient. I use it to create landing pages, resources, manuals – anything basically.
Also, I have a Calendly URL linked to oVice. This way, people can book a meeting without leaving the virtual office.
Dealing with Kevins and Karens is a challenging part of working in customer success. How do you go about managing difficult prospects and customers?
I am really patient so if a Karen or a Kevin comes to oVice, I do my best to listen to their rants. I know it’s nothing personal, people just have bad days. Most people are really nice though.
At the same time, if people have reasonable complaints, I’d listen and try to help by showing them examples of how our clients solved the same problem or giving them other ideas.
Have you ever had anything interesting or funny happen during user onboarding? Tell me more about it
Funny things happen. People think I’m an AI. Sometimes I would be doing the onboarding and halfway through they would still think I’m a robot. They might even type in the chat “This AI sounds so human. What kind of technology do they have here?”. Unless I have my camera on, clients can think I am a very human AI.
Life outside of work
What tips for unplugging from work do you have?
Sometimes I would take breaks if I can’t figure out something. I would do yoga, go for a walk, cook, or watch something on YouTube. For example, every now and then I rewatch the recordings of the events we hosted at oVice which takes me back to some good memories.
What are the things you’ve learned at work that were helpful in other fields of life?
Definitely meeting diverse people, and working with different cultures. Working in oVice taught me to do many things. For example, I can create designs now and it helps because, if I need help but no designers are available because it’s nighttime in their country, I am not stuck.
Also, I learned to manage my emotions. Working for a startup is overwhelming sometimes. I learned how to manage that by taking a break, stepping back, and thinking things through. When I am facing challenges outside of my control, I make a list of things I can do and start with the easy ones to slowly work my way through the difficult ones.
Learning from people was important to me. I’ve always worked on small projects and now I work in a bigger team. I had to understand how other people operate.
What work would you do if you didn’t work in Customer Success?
I like writing and design. I like arts in general. I also like dealing with people – I feel like, through writing and design, you still communicate with people. If I didn’t work for oVice, I’d still be working in those fields.
What drives and motivates you?
I am very passionate about the project because I’ve seen it grow since it was a baby. Being able to see it transform from an idea into something big keeps me motivated and makes me want to achieve more and grow faster. I think I won’t rest until I see oVice expanding to and conquering new markets.
Are there companies or people whose approach to work you admire? What do you want to learn from them?
For me, it’s Discord. I like their working culture. They don’t limit creativity – if you have an idea, you can go for it. I like that they are flexible in their work environment – it’s similar to oVice. You can take breaks whenever and wherever you want. They also have a lot of events that keep the team together.
I like their content as well – sometimes you’d find me watching Discord videos on Youtube rather than other things people typically watch.
I like Notion as well. They do a great job of announcing their releases – there’s no way for you to not know that Notion will be having a new release on a set date with specific new features.
What tips can you give someone who wants to join the customer success department at oVice?
I would say ‘Be your true self’ because people can tell when you are fake. I’d also say ‘Be patient’ because you will be getting all kinds of feedback – see it as an opportunity for continuous improvement.
I think that customer-centric communication is a success factor for startups today. Customer success representatives should take this into account and put the client first which means keeping an open mind, focusing on finding solutions, and building human-level connections.
This interview is part of the weekly series of conversations with the oVice global team members. See more inspiring stories our teammates have to share. Also, if you are curious about our work, learn more about the solutions oVice offers and the way the platform transforms companies all over the world.
To talk to Maya and the rest of the team in person, come by the oVice tour space.