Gabi Pirraglia joins Railz as Senior Director of Customer Success
Railz is excited to announce that Gabi Pirraglia has been brought on as Senior Director of Customer Success to launch the function and lead a dedicated team of incredible customer-centric individuals.
Gabi is building a data-driven CS function that puts data and empathy at the center of our strategy. She believes that in order to best serve customers, you first need to know them intimately which is done through a blend of quantitative and qualitative insights.
Railz: Tell us about your early career, Gabi. How did you get to where you are today? Where did your journey to Railz begin?
I started my career in communications and then moved into doing digital strategy for companies like Lexus and Toyota. I have always been interested in understanding human behavior online so moving into tech/customer success was a natural fit for me. I started as an individual contributor at my last startup, PostBeyond, before moving into a leadership role. I was there for 5 years building, refining, and scaling the Customer Success discipline up to the point of acquisition in December 2021. I am so proud of what we accomplished and I knew I wanted to run it back and join another early-stage startup that puts the Customer at the center of their strategy. Railz stood out to me because of their elegant solution that turns accounting data into a high fidelity single source of truth. As a person who relies on data to do my job (I’m not a data scientist, but I do get jazzed by the numbers), I understand the power of clean data that is easily analyzed. Railz hiring Customer Success highlights their dedication to listening to the voice of the customer firstandforemost.
How has the financial technology (fintech) industry impacted your career?
I believe in supporting products that make people’s lives easier. Fintech is an industry that is improving outdated systems and technology everyday. I think it’s very cool that we’re helping people who are running small to medium sized businesses get shit done quicker by simplifying the process to connect their account data. On top of that, we’re making that data easier to analyze so the business owner doesn’t have to wait as long to take the next step in their business.
What is a day in the life of an executive in the customer success function really like?
My role involves a lot of conversations, data analysis, and then marrying these two things together to find thoughtful insights about our customers. Our customers are constantly changing as the market shifts so it’s important to never rest on what works but to always be asking yourself what could be done better. The best way to do this is equal parts human stuff and number stuff.
Speaking of leadership, what is your leadership style like?
I practice servant leadership, like many of my colleagues at Railz. I am here to make my team and my customers successful. This involves understanding barriers so I can remove them and create solutions that work. I try to listen first (still something I work to improve) so I am getting the full picture versus only hearing what I want. I believe people are their best when they feel they can fully be themselves at work. This means being flawed, making mistakes, having bad days, and knowing they’re still valued.
What are you most excited about with regards to managing the customer success function?
I love working with teams to unpack and understand our customers. We get to see the data and insights and the human side of the relationship, which is always a thrill. I want to see people succeed so I am most excited about building the frameworks and journeys to get them there.
What would you want your first big initiative to be here?
My first big initiative will be to focus on organizational excellence so we are all aligned across Railz on what impacts the customer experience. Customer success can only thrive when the entire team is cross-functionally connected and focused on the same goals as CS is a microcosm of the larger organization.
What advice do you have for customer success leaders in other startups?
My advice to other CS leaders is to make your first mandate to listen. Listen to your team, listen to your customers, and then start to unpack the insights. There’s a lot of building to do (and it never ends) so you want to ensure you’re building based on facts vs. assumptions.
A brilliant friend (shout-out Nina) told me that she asks the following questions when she starts a new job, “what's working, what’s not, how can I help?”. I find this to be a simple and effective way to connect with people and serve them best.
Do you have any advice for someone who is interested in joining fintech or Railz?
Reach out! Don’t hesitate to share your profile and tell us about yourself and why you’re interested. We’re building a team here so we’re always on the lookout for talented and kind people. Keep an eye out on your job postings and follow anyone at Railz for updates.
Mohammad Reza Nabizadeh (Nabi) is the Demand Generation Manager at Railz. He has been working for over seven years with tech enterprises like Huawei Technologies. His focus has been on Fintech B2B and B2D demand generation, inbound marketing, and product-led growth. He is a well-rounded Fintech marketing expert, and he primarily gained experience by executing top-notch marketing techniques through all demand generation and digital marketing channels. In addition, Nabi is passionate about Developer Marketing, and the Fintech Marketing Hub has hosted him in a live session recently to share his expertise around marketing to Fintech developers. Finally, he is a life-long learner writing about Fintech and SaaS! Follow more of his thought pieces and ideas on Twitter and LinkedIn.