This week we’re pleased to have Dave Crow from Seismic Software on the podcast. Dave and John met through their good friend Todd Caponi, who we recently had on the podcast too. Dave gave us a great view into how you can continuously evolve in sales and he helps his team find the sweet spot in their sales careers. He uses a candid conversation he had with an Intern of his as reference to how you can do this and do what you love, not just doing things for the title or pay.
In This Podcast You’ll Learn:
- Laying foundations and finding your spot
- Owning your own learning
- Believing in what you sell
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Laying foundations and finding your spot
John Barrows: But what are your thoughts on a kid starting their career? What are some things they should do to create that foundation that helps them get a better lens of where they, what that job should be?
Dave Crow: I’m very proud of a great intern I worked with. One of my sales mentors, his son was my intern last summer and he got out and he said, you know, Dave, I’ve got a finance degree, yada yada, I think I want to pivot and get into sales. And I said, well what are you looking for? So, what do you mean you can sell anything? I mean, you can sell cars, you can sell retail. But what do you want to do? He says that he wants to get into software, I said, all right, tell me the truth.
Besides your dad doing it, why? I’m passionate about solving problems and I want to, and I think it’s exciting. It’s always changing.
You gotta be thinking about what you’re passionate about. Do you really just want to go dial for dollars and do you want to just take orders over the phone? Great. There are plenty of customer service jobs that do that and sales. I don’t know about you, but my dad worked at one company, he did been through a bunch but a bunch of iterations within. It was basically at this large company for most of his career.
And my mom was a teacher for, you know, 25 years, a lot. So we’re not like that. Everybody’s going to a couple of different jobs and it’s not a bad thing, but the key is you have to learn from and set yourself up for success at each place and know when it’s time to move on to the next. Because everywhere you go, you have to learn something.
You’ve got to know when you stop learning, it means you’re at the wrong place or you’re in the wrong job at that place because you’re have always gotta be learning. So the young people coming out looking for a job, finding the right culture that’s going to match what you want to do. So you have to have an environment that is open to your success. That’s, you know, whether there are plenty of large companies that do with their, plenty of small companies, but you also have to find out what market you want to be in and you’re not going to get it right. You’re going to get it wrong. Everyone gets it wrong. At least at least once move, it’s okay, but learn from each of those.
Owning your own learning
Dave Crow: You’ve got to learn from the formal stuff. But I think is nice because it’s the entrepreneur side of me. In many of my jobs we had to go figure it out. And I think if you’re passionate about what you’re trying to do and you can see whether it’s from your mentors, or whether it’s from your friends, whether it’s in the office or out. I learned from Todd Caponi, that guy’s the most intense guy in the world. And I learned every time I talked to him. It’s because you get passionate about things and do something that you want to do. And on the learning side, if you’re not getting the learning, you’re that the environment in your current company, then you’ve got to stop.
You need formal stuff and find, you’ve got to work with your management and say, how do we get that? Maybe it’s not a formal training. It could be a mentorship program. Maybe it’s somebody next to you that you can ride along with. You know, all the good sales guys that I learned from any one of them, if I still call them up now, like, Hey, you know, call my buddy down in Houston. And I’m like, Hey, let’s go.
I called one of my friends five minutes before this podcast. And I said, Hey, I’m about to talk to John Barrows, give me a couple of nuggets on topics and you know, what are we doing? And you’re going to figure out your network of people, whether it’s your peers, whether it’s old, old bosses, whether it’s a buddy of yours.
Believing in what you sell
John Barrows: After a few serious conversations and thinking hard about it, I realized it really doesn’t matter what I sell. It matters that I believe in what I sell. And that literally opened up my lens to all sorts of different opportunities, right?
Dave Crow: Yeah, I think it gives you a huge edge. And I have been working in some markets that are highly technical and it’s maybe less easy to be super passionate about that specific thing. But you can be passionate about the process of solving the problem or hitting the goals.
People see the salesperson stereotype and that’s not really what sales is. Selling is solving problems.
What you’re doing, you’re solving a problem. You’re solving the issue with how they sell and you’re helping them get better with the human capital they have. And you know, you look at, at every company, if I walk in, I just had a great sales call last week. We didn’t talk about Seismic for more than a minute in a 90 minute call and it was in person.
We sat down, I brought a consultant in, we talked, what are you trying to, and we talked all about the industry. Together we talked about the problems we just talked about in general. It’s been a roadmap for success. And I told my guy ahead of time, we’re going in there and the goal is not to pitch a size big deployment.
The goal is to pitch what this person needs and help them solve a problem in marketing and sales technology and just educate this guy. The guy said, I don’t even know I took on this role and I have so much responsibility. I need help. So everyone out there, salespeople, a good salesperson is going to be your best resource. I often take calls and try to qualify the information reps want to give me, but I’ll take the information and try to learn every time.
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