As we embark on a new year full of new opportunities, I’m excited to spotlight one of our team members who has recently taken a new role—and is one of our past culture awards winners—Ken Sylvain! If you’ve seen our past team spotlights, you know that the CTM culture awards recognize outstanding employees who embody our core values as a company: Impact, Innovation, Customer Driven, and Community.
With that in mind, read on to get to know Ken! In this interview, we talk about Ken’s recent promotion to Enterprise Customer Success Manager, his experience co-leading our internal Mentorship program, and how he keeps a positive mindset. Plus, find out which CTM feature his fastest-growing clients are all using.
Name: Kenneth Sylvain
Title: Enterprise Customer Success Manager
Favorite food: Pecan Pie
Currently Watching: Mandalorian (love Star Wars and Lord of the Rings)
Drink of choice: Kahlua and cream
Work-from-home soundtrack: Gospel music
Early bird or night owl? At my best, an early bird
To start, you often share inspiring messages with the team. Do you have a favorite quote to kick us off today?
Ken: My favorite quote is “Be the change you want to see in the world.” This led to my mantra, “Share the Love.” For me, the good news is that these sentiments neatly dovetail into what I do as a profession.
Speaking of, have you always been so positive?
Ken: Yes, but the longer answer is that it’s always a struggle to be positive, so I have to be very intentional. I credit my dad for challenging me to bring a solution focus. When I would come to him complaining and listing my grievances, he would ask, “Is that part of the problem or part of the solution?” He challenged me to think of the opportunity, and that’s something I’ve stuck with through the years. Any time a customer voices an issue, it’s an opportunity for us to dig deeper and bring the solution. In fact, the roles that I’ve enjoyed the most and felt I’ve had the biggest impact, always started off as hairy situations.
You’re also the co-leader of our Mentorship program, which has been a huge success, pairing CTM team members to encourage professional development. How did this program come to fruition?
Ken: I have participated in mentorship programs on both ends, and had made comments about our development opportunity, but our COO was the one who said, “We need a mentorship program.” She reached out to my colleague and I and asked us to organize the program, knowing it was something near to our hearts.
We put our heads together, drawing on our past experiences as both mentors and mentees. A good mentorship program needs three P’s: make it personal, be prescriptive, and add programming. The programming helps to give structure, and we provide recommendations for frequency of meeting and topics to cover, but you also need to let each pair personalize the framework so that it works for them.
What’s been your favorite part of the Mentorship program?
Ken: Getting to know people. When you dive into a mentorship program, you get to connect with your mentor/mentee on a deeper level. The growth is always bidirectional, too. Whether you’re the mentor or the mentee in the pair, you always see new things in yourself to work on. It’s always helped me to grow, and I’ve seen others grow and become more confident.
You’ve been with the company since 2018 (coming up on three years!). What’s one of the biggest changes you’ve seen at CTM over the years?
Ken: How we see ourselves has evolved the most. When I joined, we still had the mentality of our days as a start-up of less than ten people. Now, we set our goals higher, and we have greater expectations of ourselves.
What’s one thing that hasn’t changed over the years?
Ken: The number one reason I came to CTM was that I wanted to be a part of a smaller company, where each person has an impact. Even though we’ve grown, we are still a family-owned company, and by being part of it, you’re a part of the family. I still have that impact. It never ceases to amaze me that when I have something to say that’s different, people listen.
Even though we’ve grown, we are still a family-owned company, and by being part of it, you’re a part of the family.
So, hopefully we’re getting the best of both worlds. I used to manage a team in Atlanta, where we had bought a small start-up. The folks at the start-up were upset because they were used to doing everything themselves. It took some time, but they were able to realize that they could have the best of both worlds by taking advantage of the resources of the corporate office while maintaining their agility and impact as a small team. One thing I love about CTM is that as we grow and increase our resources, we still understand the importance of owning what you do and having that impact.
Speaking of change, congratulations on your recent promotion! What will your new role entail?
Ken: Shifting to the new Enterprise Customer Success role enables me to do what I enjoy most—and do it more. Engaging with a smaller group of our larger clients, I’ll be able to better understand their operation, their opportunities, and the solutions they’re seeking. I’ll also be able to learn about where they’re going in the future and work with the development team on what future solutions we should be focusing on to be prepared to meet our clients’ needs down the road.
The hard part is the transition. I have clients who I’ve worked with through the years and watched them grow, so it’s not always easy to transition away. But, I know they will be in good hands with my fellow teammates.
What are some of the biggest benefits of CallTrackingMetrics for enterprise level businesses?
Ken: One huge benefit is our ability to be high-touch and innovative. We truly listen and make changes based on what our customers need. We’ve seen this especially over the past 6 months, as our clients have been able to stay in business—and even grow—through the pandemic, because they were using our solution. Because I will be working with a smaller group, I can take this further and be even more proactive in helping them increase conversions and reduce their costs.
What’s one misconception or myth you hear about CTM?
Ken: All call tracking solutions are the same.
Sometimes people don’t realize just how robust our product is, and they don’t necessarily see the benefit of the call management side of our business at first. It’s why we need to listen before we speak, to make sure we are focusing on the feature they need right now, and not overwhelming them with the entire product at once.
What’s one of your favorite CTM features?
Ken: Text triggers. I’m a huge fan of texting. The bulk of our clients reach out because they need to track calls. They don’t realize that integrating texting into your communications along with calls can increase conversion rates by over 100%.
When I look at my clients who have had the most explosive growth, all of them are using texting. It’s not a matter of if you should use text—it’s how. So text triggers are how to automate that process, so that there’s not too much added work involved.
So, enough about work. Let’s get to know you better! What do you do on the weekends?
Ken: I’m trying to get out either biking or hiking every weekend. We’ll go along the C&O Canal, out to the Eastern shore, or biking around the city.
Anything we haven’t covered, that you’d like to add?
Ken: One thing that I’m thinking about is the culture of our company. It caught me off guard that clients are able to sense our culture. Our support team has gotten accolades, because customers sense that our support team cares. I’ve been surprised at how many of my clients told me they had been through at least four of our competitors before landing with CTM, and they talked about how we were so much better. It’s not only the product that makes the difference, but the people.
It’s not only the product that makes the difference, but the people.