HubSpot INBOUND 2020 Highlight: Channeling Customer Empathy


Besides the countless session tips and tricks to work smarter (not harder), this year’s virtual HubSpot INBOUND 2020 conference carried a very specific theme: Empathy.

In our current times, I was grateful to see that empathy is on the minds of so many leaders and innovators. Empathy plays a crucial role in all aspects of the workforce.

As Gate 39 Media’s Director of Client Services, I can attest that to build successful relationships, empathy must be hard-wired into all interactions with prospects, peers, customers, and team members.

Why Having Client Empathy is Essential to Your Business

Channeling Customer Empathy

The INBOUND session I attended called “Channeling Customer Empathy” featured Sasan Goodarzi, CEO of Intuit and Sangram Vajre, Co-founder of Terminus.

These leaders listed 3 critical traits that their organizations are keenly focused on. These traits included Flexibility, Transparency, and Diversity, noting that people want to work on the best team, that customers want to buy the best products; therefore, you must sell not only a product but a culture to customers and teams.

Client success is more than just an addition to their portfolio, the call out that it needs to be baked into their DNA and that starts with empathy.

These leaders discussed being “customer obsessed” – Intuit has been able to keep empathy for customers during COVID and that their customer obsession matters now more than ever.

Beyond creating operational goals for their organization, they create aspirational goals for their clients, such as aiming to double the savings rate for customers using their platform and increasing the success rate our small business clients.

Customer Obsession

Sasan Goodarzi pointed out that Intuit’s customer obsession includes a focus on:

  1. Customer-Driven Innovation — Observing to identify the big pain point and can we solve it?
  2. Design for Delight – Before you fall in love with one solution, come up with a few and pass them by the customer

Additionally, Diversity also applies to the firm’s obsession with improving the customer experience.

Inclusion is a choice; diversity of thought and experience is equally important to create an environment of inclusion. You can only be so customer-obsessed — to successfully make products and services for people with VERY different backgrounds, your team must reflect this diversity to deliver with empathy and authenticity.

We need to be a role model to fight racism internally and externally, to create an environment where people are represented to build the right products for a diverse range of customers – and being public about it and how we can improve. And we can always improve.

One of the values we have is “Stronger Together” – diversity of voices delivers great results. It is critical to do good in the world.

This HubSpot INBOUND session truly resonated with me. I’d like to take these ideas and apply them to the growth of Gate 39 Media as we lean into change with empathy and focus on building value and trust with customers and teammates.

If you’d like to learn more about Gate 39 Media, HubSpot, INBOUND, or to learn how we can help you improve the experiences you’re building for your own clients, let’s talk.


You may also be interested in: