I find this article very atypical of my working experience—with a few false paradigms laid out that they're then attacking. First two bullets for example...
1) Customer champions are often outside the product team (sales, customer support etc) and have little to no influence over product decisions.
No this isn't true. The best products are made when engineers and designers work closely with users and understand them. They're searching for REAL value... not some salesy objection handling. They truly wish to help the user achieve their goals. This is called user research. Even the language chosen in this article: "customer research" is problematic to begin with. Your customer isn't necessarily your user. They are different and this article doesn't differentiate.
Product makers fought throughout the 90s to get rid of MBA-style salesy product design. It's not perfect, but it's better now.
2) Product teams don’t know how to get to customer insights and if they do, they don’t know how to translate those insights into customer outcomes.
Umm nope. Engineers, product managers and experience designers live for user interviews, usability studies, and behavioural analytics and other means to understand why people do what they do. Why you think a customer service rep would be better at this is beyond me.
The article has some good points, but it's clear to me it was written with an anti-designer/engineering slant I can't stomach.