Nick Francis of Help Scout


Today, I’m talking with Nick Francis, the Co-founder and CEO at Help Scout where they empower customer-centric businesses to serve people in the most human, helpful way.

After spending two years at Groove, a competitor of Help Scout, I was obviously aware of them and their brand but we were so focused on our own mission that I never dug too deep into their story. I’m glad that I had the opportunity to change that as I prepared for this interview.

Help Scout is a fully remote company with more than 100 employees and while they’ve raised some money, they’re profitable and operate as a certified B Corp. B Corps are businesses that meet the highest standards of verified social and environmental performance, public transparency, and legal accountability to balance profit and purpose.

As every founder knows, it’s never easy to grow a business and Nick’s story is no different. The part of the journey we focus the most on is hiring—what went wrong in the early days and how they got it right. 

There is a ton of practical advice in here that any team can act on right away, I know it’s changed my thinking about hiring, but the bigger message Nick shares is that when it comes to diversity and inclusion the right thing to do is also the best thing for the business.

Especially now, so many companies talk a big game when it comes to diversity and inclusion but few actually back it up. Help Scout is one of those rare exceptions that put their money where their mouth is.

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Topics covered:

  1. Company background
    1. What exactly is Help Scout and what does the business look like today?
    2. How would you describe your role?
    3. What does building a great business mean to you?
      1. Why is optionality so important in this quest?
  2. Hiring lessons
    1. What early mistakes did you make with hiring?
      1. What problems did you run into when hiring for potential?
    2. What goes into hiring great people for remote work?
      1. How do you attract those people?
      2. What is your hiring process like?
    3. How does your significant investment in PeopleOps play into this?
  3. Behind-the-scenes
    1. What does “building a great business” mean to you?
  4. “Rapid Fire” questions
  5. Where can listeners go to learn more?

Resources mentioned:

Where to learn more:

To hear more from Nick you can follow him on Twitter or see what he and the team are up to at