A change at work

I recently changed positions at work.  Instead of managing developers and QA I will be “managing” thousands of customers.  My new title is, “Director of Customer Development”.

While I will miss directly mentoring people, this does seem to be a role I have spent years preparing for.  From my years running a public dial-up BBS years ago, to managing global customer care during the development of WiFi, and finally the last 4+ years I have spent involved in what is now known as “social media” or “social networking”.

The most challenging aspect, and the one I look forward to the most, is the fact that this is something new for us as a company – so I’m getting to pioneer, at some level.  So how do you do that?

To me, it is easy – I asked my customers what they need/want from us.  I’ll focus on delivering that.  Hard to imagine failing if you give customers what they ask for!

The other aspect of the job that I know I will enjoy is the ever changing nature of the position.  I don’t do well with repetition.  This should be anything but repetitive!

So how did I start this new position?  Well, by doing a forum post where I gave the domain owners for nearly 100,000 websites both of my cell phone numbers – AND my home phone number.  Does that sound crazy?  Perhaps so.  🙂

But I love talking to customers – always have.  And I never cringe when my phone rings and I recognize a customer is calling.  Even if they aren’t 100% happy – because my job is to make them happy!

So I am looking forward to this next stage of my journey through my professional career.  It is rare that you get the chance to get paid for what you absolutely love doing.  So I plan on making the most of this 🙂


  1. @Kaylyn, @jon – Thanks! I hope to live up to your expectations! 🙂

    @Paul – depends on how you look at it, I guess. I look at it more from the marketing side where I AM “developing customers” (finding them!). And then from the technical side, where often I am certainly helping them “develop” their application so it functions well in the cloud.

    But in any case, I think I’ll enjoy this, if today was any indication!


  2. Paul Claessen says:

    Congrats, Rob.

    I liked the name ‘Customer Satisfaction’ better! Or even ‘Customer Relations’, which is what it really is.

    “Customer Development” sounds like your customers need ‘development’ … which is a bit denigrating 😉

  3. Congrats on the new position Rob!

  4. Congrats Rob, you will do great in this position!

  5. Thanks, Major and Yuvi 🙂 It should be fun!

  6. +1 Major Hayden.

    Best of luck 🙂

  7. Best of luck to you in the new position. I think you’ll be quite effective.