Q1: Please tell us who you are and what you do.
Jayne Hill, brand and sales manager, VECTA Sales Solutions, providing combined BI and CRM.
Q2: What made you go into the industry sector you work in?
I had a successful career in retail and business travel sales and management and following a stint of further education industry tutoring, the impact that software and technology would have on the business world and how the way those students would work in the future really hit home so I decided on a change into the quickly evolving software industry. Initially, I started in an operational role but having come from a very people orientated role quickly evolved back into sales and customer management.
Q3: Why did you choose a sales career?
I was an unlikely sales person at the time and, even though I had targets to meet, didn't really see the job as 'selling'. However, in reflection in my early roles I was selling the dream; I started by helping people to choose and buy the right holiday and taking the complexity of arrangements away to make it easy for our customers, so I really saw it as helping people, advising them on choices and ensuring they thought of everything they would need to do to fulfil their wishes, most of which they then bought from me. I've carried on with that philosophy and came into 'sales' because its a way of helping people to select something that's right for them whether its a holiday or piece of software or the 'widgets' our customers sell its still helping to fulfil a need, a wish, or a dream for something better.
Q4: How often does your company hold sales or target-setting meetings?
Regular conference calls, twice-monthly mini meetings, a monthly review meeting and half year full sales and target review.
Q5: What sets your employer apart from the rest?
They are staff and customer focussed, fair and honest! The door of our CEO is always open and we are developing a collaborative approach across the business. We’ve managed to create a supportive environment with huge enthusiasm for our solutions.
Q6: Do you feel your company/industrial sector offers sufficient high-earning potential?
Rewards can be achieved on great results.
Q7: What do you see as the main key to successful sales?
Empathy, trust, knowledge and relationships
Q8: What was the most useful sales training/experience you have had?
Many years ago, learning about buying behaviour and interactions
Q9: Who has been your biggest influencer and why?
Slightly clichéd but one has to be Tim Berners-Lee co-inventor of the world wide web. My working life has certainly evolved and his influence has revolutionised business and our personal lives today.
Q10: What is the most memorable sale you have ever made?
There have been a few and the most memorable are not always the biggest or best!
Q11: What’s the funniest sales situation you can share with SI?
These are tricky to think of but one relaxed conversation with a customer comes to mind: I stood with one foot on the swivel chair leg finalising details of the sale and within seconds was flat on my back on the floor at the customers feet. The chair moved and so did I!!
Q12: What is the best part and worst part of your job?
Best: dealing with customers and seeing their success. Worst: too many hours on the road.
Q13: And finally, is there anything you'd like to let the sales profession know about you, your career, or your opinion on the sales world?
The sales world is changing and fast. Methods and choices of communication and information sources are greater and more instant than ever before and that affects all dealings with staff, customers and prospects as well as how we evolve our solutions. I hope I am continuing to evolve my thinking fast enough to stay ahead of the game and make the most of the changing world around us.
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