By: Jaime Ann Sanborn, MLIS, Instructional Designer  | 2/11/2022 |

The term “customer” has meant very different things to me throughout my career. For a long time, “patron” was the word I used, and for an even longer time it was “student.” Now, at Percepta, I think of my “customer” as anyone whose work experience I strive to make easier. I have been a Librarian, Teacher, and now, Instructional Designer. Each of those roles shares the common theme of taking complex information systems and distilling them down into digestible, comprehendible, learning experiences. So, ultimately, my customer has always been the information-seeker. Now, the question is, how does one determine “success” in serving the information-seeker.

There are both qualitative and quantitative ways of defining success. I have always cared more for the former. Libraries determine customer success by patron usage statistics. Circulations, website visits, on-site visits, account creations- all of these measurable factors speak powerfully to those who determine and fund library budgets. However, to me, that is not what defines customer success. Seeing the absolute joy on a child’s face because they just checked out the latest book in their favorite series- that is customer success. Helping hesitant readers gain confidence by demonstrating how reading along with the audiobook can improve their fluency and comprehension- that is customer success. Joy, confidence- these are not measurable concepts, but they are the true measure of success.

My students have said powerful things to me over the years: “I never liked to read before I met you;” “I didn’t think I could write well until I took your class;” “The library is my favorite place to be at school.” Impact. Positive emotional, and intellectual impact is my definition of customer success. It is certainly what kept me loyal to teaching for over a decade of my life. If I did not think I could have a positive impact on people at Percepta, I would not have signed on.

People over profit is a firm tenet of my beliefs. While profits are wonderful and keep us all fed, the positive impact we can have on our customers is what keeps us successful. So, at Percepta, in my new and exciting career as an Instructional Designer, my goal, my aim, my vision of success is to provide all the trainers with intuitive, effective, and enjoyable curriculum so that they may provide agents with meaningful, and impactful instruction so that they may provide customers with seamless, informed, and enjoyable service. My work will ease and enliven the experiences of many. Success!