Monday Guest Dannah Vaughan

Spread the love

Get to know Dannah Vaughan

By: Mohammed Alqaq   |  October 16, 2023

Thank you for inviting me to be a Monday Guest! I am Dannah Vaughan, Founder and CEO of the Rebels of SaaS (™) podcast. It is a platform to connect positive, and strategic disruption to SaaS leaders around the world. I am also a mother to two beautiful girls, Beatrice and Margaret Vaughan. I have been a VP, Senior Director, and Executive Customer Success leader for 8 years.

I love problem-solving and helping people. I love to build and transform CS organizations that retain revenue and grow it as well.

Dannah Vaughan_Headshot

We asked Dannah to take us through a journey telling us about her career path, how she spends her workday, what advice she can share with someone starting as a customer success manager, and many other questions.

Enjoy reading this interview  

Tell us about your career path?

I started my career in retail. I worked in retail in college and led my first team of 65 people there. Then I went to work in telecom and started learning the importance of relationships to business. From there I began my love affair with Customer success as a practice.

How did you join Customer Success?

It was by accident! I had a brand new child and at the time did not want to be attached to a beeper after hours. A small local company was recruiting for what they coined a customer success manager. I took the bait and applied. I have been hooked ever since!

How would you describe the ideal CSM candidate?

The ideal candidate knows how to read the room, how to talk to people, and how to say no. It is a person who knows how to work hard. It is 50% talent and 50% ability/technical skills.

What one piece of advice would you give to someone just starting out as a Customer Success Manager?

Listen to your customers! That matters just as much as talking.

 “There is room to shape and mold the practice!”.

Can you take us on a journey describing what your workday looks like?

Get up and drink an iced latte! Review daily workload and write down three priorities to strategically focus on! Then I dive in!

What makes you feel inspired or motivated?

My two girls, and helping customers solve complex problems that help them do better business. CS is about solving for the Customer. That is the core value of our practice.

What’s one thing that people are generally surprised to find out about you?

I was Dorothy (from Wizard of Oz)in a high school production, and I am left handed!

Who do you look up to the most? 

My mom, she always helps me to trust the journey.

What are your top 3 priorities now?

Be a good mom, continue to connect with great people in the CS community, remember life matters (not just the work). 😉

What advice would you give to Customer Success Managers to grow and develop their careers?

Follow Gainsight as a teaching tool, their knowledge certifications and books are sublime. Also, connect with others in the CS community! We are still working together to build customer success as a practice, it isn’t like DevOps or support in that CS is still new comparatively. That is what makes it so exciting! There is room to shape and mold the practice!

What’s your favorite book, and why?

I love Bossypants, by Tina Fey. It celebrates the ugly things within ourselves and teaches that we don’t have to be ashamed of them. She has a scar that she wears proudly on her face, and is still a superstar!

» Check out the 10 Books a CSM should read to advance and improve their skills.

Have you had your “I’ve made it” moment yet?

No, I win some days and I fail others. I am always chasing myself, I hope that never ends. Who wants to “make it”? How boring would that be? 🙂 

What should I have asked you but didn’t? 

Who am I outside of work? I love my family and feel that work life balance for the western world is a real problem. Finding time to live is what really matters.

Where can people go to find out more about you?

Follow me on LinkedIn! and check my Spotify channel

Thank you, Dannah, for sharing your knowledge and for the opportunity to know you more.

Do you have a Customer Success Leader, Expert, or Influencer you would like to know more about?