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How to ace your first 90 days as a CSM

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So you’ve just accepted a new position as a Customer Success Manager, congratulations!

Whether you have worked in the field before or are experiencing it for the first time, every company and CS team work differently. As a result, it is important to set expectations and create a plan for your first 90 days to set you and your team up for success.

From my experience as a CSM, I’ve found that the most efficient path to success is focusing on one specific goal for each set of 30 days:

1-30 should be dedicated to Observing

31-60 should be dedicated to Analysing

61-90 should be dedicated to Presenting

Let’s dive in on what this means.


The first 30 days should be spent in a ‘sponge-like’ state. Take in all available information and document everything you can on these 3 key areas:

This can be overwhelming at first, so here are some tips to get you started.


In-depth industry knowledge gives you a distinct advantage when interacting with clients. You don’t have to be an expert - but the more you know, the better!

As you explore the industry, always remember to relate what you learn to your customer. What challenges are they facing? How can your product or service add value to them? Understanding your customers' needs will help you build a relationship with them.

  • Get to know industry terms and acronyms - build a list that you can refer to;
  • Subscribe to newsletters and Google Alerts to stay up-to-date;
  • Speak with experts within your industry and company.


Customers should be able to rely on you as an expert on the product. A good CSM will be able to tackle any questions, problems or concerns that a customer may have.

Here’s how you get started:

  • Identify the jobs-to-be-done that your customers set to achieve;
  • Think about the challenges that they face along the way. What issues or roadblocks might they have with your product?
  • Explore the support materials available to your customer;
  • Interact with the platform to get a feel for how it works for users.


Building solid relationships with your cross-functional teams across your business will save you both time and headaches in the future.

  • Stay connected - set up regular meetings with your key stakeholders. I set up weekly pipeline calls with the Sales team, fortnightly calls with, Slack channels to openly share ideas;
  • Reach out to teams with the phrase “What can I do to make you successful?” You might discover your product team wants to streamline customer feedback collection, or sales would like a cleaner handover process;
  • Position yourself as someone that can make your cross-functional teams successful;
  • Let your team know how best to communicate with you.



Now that you have built a solid foundation of understanding about your product and how it fits within the industry, it’s time to dive into your customers and their experience with your brand.

Your manager has likely given you a book of business that you will be working with. Take time to:

  • Identify important accounts - your biggest risks and opportunities;
  • Explore the unique challenges of different customer segments. How do their needs differ from the rest of the customer base?
  • Research how your customers’ experience has been so far.

Quickly build an understanding of each of your customers.

  • Sit in on customer calls - there’s no need to add input but use these opportunities to understand how customers interact with your team;
  • Understand the frustration of your customers - browse through high frequency and high priority tickets;
  • Keep up to date - use Google Alerts and like their LinkedIn page so you never miss out on the latest news.


  • What are your touchpoints with customers? Map out the processes (my favourite is the Customer Journey). Coming from an IT background, I am accustomed to drawing process flows, a skill which I have brought to Customer Success. Build diagrams of the touchpoints you have with customers (customer journey) and internal processes (ticket management);
  • Create a document and continually note down potential improvements or alternative methods.

Use this time to understand how your team is interacting with customers and how they respond.


Now that you’ve mastered the product and definitively understand the plight of your customers, it’s time to put that knowledge to work.

You have been brought in, not just to fill a role, but to give new insights and fresh ideas. Use all the knowledge and documentation you’ve been collecting to become a strategic partner to your company.

By Day 61, you should have a large base of documents containing all the current blockers and streamlining opportunities you’ve identified along with general feedback you have on the company.

  • Format these ideas into a presentable format and share them with your manager. These may not be immediately feasible or actionable but will make a great foundation for future plans;
  • Align with your manager on their plans for their CS Strategy. It could be that the current focus for your team is adoption strategies to prove value to clients to then reduce churn. How do your ideas mesh with this line of thinking? What are some other strategies that can be implemented?
  • Figure out some quick wins that you can implement to better reach your team’s CS goals. Maybe there are touchpoints during the onboarding process that could be better streamlined or methods where you can improve customer knowledge.

When presenting your plans and ideas to your manager, it can also be useful to discuss new tools you can use to streamline your CS processes and boost productivity.

At, we’ve created a Customer Success platform that:

So that you never miss a big opportunity or threat.

Book a demo with us to see what Velaris can do for your team.

Ready to discover your new Customer Success superpower?

Velaris will obliterate your team’s troubles and produce better experiences for your customers…and set up only takes minutes. What’s not to love? It’s, well, super!

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