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      My Commitment to You as Chief Customer Experience Officer

      To Our Customers,

      I am humbled and honored. I was recently asked to step into an incredible role at Instructure -- the company’s first-ever Chief Customer Experience Officer. As I reflect on both the highs and lows of my career that have brought me to this point, I think about every teacher, faculty member, administrator, student, coworker, business leader, partner, and mentor that I have crossed paths with that has both deepened my passion for education and guided my growth. You have inspired me to spend my entire career in education.

      Throughout my career, one thing has been constant -- change. I have seen change in the classroom, in the technologies used to support learning, and in the broader education space. We are also implementing changes at Instructure, my home for the last 6 years. Our CEO, Dan Goldsmith, in a recent note to customers, outlines our strategic focus on education moving forward and how we are organizing as a team to achieve greater goals. Greater goals are best achieved through collaboration and community, rather than by a single person. So in my new role, I am excited to work together with fellow employees, customers, partners, and community members to deliver innovation that will support you and power the future of education.

      Since we are in this together, I thought it may be helpful to share more about my role and how I plan to work with you. My primary responsibility as your Chief Customer Experience Officer is to ensure we retain a company-wide, customer-centric culture. To do this, I will:

      • Partner closely with Mitch Benson, our Chief Product Officer, and Jen Goldsmith, our Chief Strategy Officer, to represent your voice in company decision-making, strategy-crafting, and action-planning.
      • Engage in thoughtful, regular exchanges with you to gather your experiences and expertise. I deeply value and respect you as industry thought leaders, experimenters, and advisors.
      • Leverage insights to better understand, and ultimately improve, how you are supported throughout your entire journey with us.
      • Foster a collaborative customer spirit and excitement to serve within every employee of the company.

      Along with driving a customer-centric culture at Instructure, I also promise to:

      • Respect the unique nature of how you serve and protect your extended communities.
      • Keep an eye to the future, especially as our economies rapidly change and you must respond to significant shifts in the workforce.
      • Drive increased adoption of the technologies purchased by you to ensure that your valuable, scarce resources have the biggest impact on your students as possible.
      • Challenge traditional ideas and thinking, asking the “what if?” that will help move education forward in partnership.

      As my extended education family, in return, I ask that you continue to challenge me and hold me accountable in my commitments -- we are always open to respectful and productive dialogue. I will be honest with you and to myself; I will act with compassion; I will work every day to respect the trust you place in me and in Instructure.

      In the coming weeks and months, I will share more about key issues like data privacy, the role of standards, and our practices for supporting you on a day to day basis. Stay tuned! In the meantime, I thank you for the work you do every day and I am committed to helping you succeed.

      I invite you to reach out to me anytime at or through Twitter @melissajoell.

      Keep learning,