The Firefighters’ Guide to Success

The Firefighters’ Guide to Success

Author: The Carta Team
Read time:  4 minutes
Published date:  May 9, 2017
At Carta we strive for a sense of teamwork, urgency and helpfulness. The work culture is not a step-by-step instruction manual.

If you’ve read Carta 101, you know we move quickly. This is especially true for people in our support and account management roles. I initially wrote these guidelines to help new team members better help themselves, and we have since passed it along to all employees. The bones of this guide apply to any role at Carta.

A few must-haves before we start

A sense of:

  1. Teamwork

  2. Urgency

  3. Helpfulness (but not too helpful)

Some tips to keep top-of-mind

These tips are meant to provide you with the general mentality to be successful in this role. It is not a step-by-step instruction manual for closing tickets. Our product and the problems we solve are always changing. The people that work with this mentality are the successful ones.

  1. Be hungry: a) To respond, to learn, to solve customers’ problems.

  2. If you don’t know something, ask: a) We are busy, but we want to help you learn. b) If no one in success can help you right away and you need an answer, reach out to someone else. Carta is made up of people with equity love running through their veins.

  3. If you don’t know the answer, try to figure it out: a) Use our demo site, sandbox site, and ‘impersonate’ tools all the time.

  4. Be organized and open: a) Since we are working different shifts and people respond at different times, try to leave as much context as possible. b) If you leave and have tickets assigned to you, make sure to reassign to ‘Anyone’ before heading out so nothing gets stuck sitting in an inbox.

  5. Leave notes: a) Make notes of everything. If you respond on a different interface then make a note. If you close a ticket, make a note. b) Once you listen to a voicemail and leave a note on it, we will assume that you are going to call back. If you aren’t going to call back, write a note to let us know.

  6. I know we like concise, but also use an empathetic, compassionate tone: a) No one likes a know-it-all (especially when it’s coming from a millennial at a tech company). b) But, don’t over apologize. c) Acknowledge our shortcomings (if they are really shortcomings). i. The product is not perfect. Get the customer on our side so they can help us to build a better product. We want them to be excited to help us.

  7. Follow through: a) If you tell someone on chats you will follow up on Helpscout, leave the URL to the Helpscout ticket as a note in the chat conversation. b) Respond ASAP: start from the bottom of the Helpscout inbox and answer the questions as completely as possible. When someone pops up on chat, get back to them, even if you don’t know the answer right away. Especially on chat, people like to know someone is there.

  8. Don’t assign anything if you’re not going to get to it within 2 hours: a) We know it gets busy, but if you realize you won’t get to it reassign it to ‘anyone.’ It’s better to work out of ‘unassigned’ and ensure the tickets will get answered as they come in.

  9. Answer questions directly and repeat the language they used in your answer: a) Especially if they ask yes/no questions.

  10. Seriously. Just ask. a) Ask for help if: i. You tried something and can’t figure it out.ii. You don’t know the answer.iii. You asked before and no one has answered yet.iv. You’re drowning and need a life vest.

Ways to help learn more faster (IMHO)

Working well as a unit is important on our account management team. It’s like we’re all trying to run forward with our arms linked – we’re only as fast as our slowest team member. For everyone to be on the same page, each person has to train to keep up.

  1. If you see an email that you don’t know how to solve, write down the ticket number (or add a note to the ticket) so that you can see how the person responds: a) You can “follow” emails on Helpscout. b) If you see a question pop up in chat that you don’t understand, follow it, write down the URL, and take screenshots of the conversation.

  2. Take notes: a) There is a huge notes document that we can share if you think it would help. Generally, I don’t know if other people’s notes are helpful, but they might be a good reference.

  3. Read Consider Your Options (if you’ve already read it, read it again).

  4. There should never be down time. There should not be time for Facebook or Instagram. We all have lives outside of work, but we ask you to be at work when you are at work. a) This means when you come in for your shift you are ready to work: i. Sitting down and jumping on chats and phone calls at 7:30, not walking in the door. b) If you find yourself twiddling your thumbs: i. Check chats – a new chat probably popped in.ii. Check Helpscout – that inbox hasn’t been empty in ages (if you sent out drafts to someone, ping them to respond).iii. Check back on emails you’ve been following.iv. Go through ‘pending’ emails and work on getting them cleared out. Find out why they are still pending or if we can resolve the situation.v. Go through our Knowledge Watch Edi’s ASC 718 training video.

The Carta Team
While we believe in assigning ownership at Carta, this blog post belongs to all of us.