Was working with my CRO, Nate Gilmore, a few weeks back and we ended up doing a pretty interesting exercise.
He asked me "what are the pillars that make up a successful sales rep at PandaDoc, what made you successful? Think back to it."
So we began to dive deep into the technical skills, the motivations, the moments, and even the small notes from Sales Leaders at PandaDoc that motivated me.
We ended up building a Foundational Triangle.
Bottom to Top
The obvious foundation for all sales reps is their compensation. It's the first thing I think about and the first thing I ask my manager about, just the nature of the game being in sales.
The tools/tech stack was an essential aspect that I had to learn when I first got onboarded into my sales role. The faster I could learn those tools and leverage them, the quicker I could be selling and using them to my advantage.
Understanding The Messaging
When I was spending my time studying the product in my first 2-3 weeks, I wanted to get a strong grasp on the type of messaging some of the other top reps were using. Whether that was understanding the types of value props they used in certain scenarios or just how to properly articulate the product and its different use cases. Understanding the right language to use was important to me.
Something that I won't take for granted was the amount of training I received. While not all companies provide this sort of sales training, it's still something that can be pursued on your own. Take training of all kinds seriously, it's the only way you'll improve your craft.
Honestly one of the biggest factors that contributed to my success. I had people around me that were top-notch salespeople and were willing to take me under their wing and show me the ropes. They won't seek you out though, so you'll have to be brave enough to find them on your own.
This slightly ties into the training aspect but goes a bit deeper.
A huge part of sales is the mental game, so open yourself up with curiosity. Make sure you are at least agreeable to all forms of development and utilize your natural curiosity as a salesperson to really understand how make yourself better.
Understanding Your Why
This already sounds cliché, I know. But in all honesty sales can be super stressful sometimes so if you really don't know why you want to be in this industry, then what makes you think you'll stick around when things get tough? Be self aware.
This is not something that you can control. Appreciation and recognition for the hard work you do is, at least in my case, the greatest motivator for me apart from money. When people, namely sales leaders, appreciate your worth and the value you bring then it solidifies in your mind that you are good enough. Which mentally, can mean a lot.