How I Became a Salesperson (The Honest Truth)
Let me tell you the honest truth about how I became a salesperson, after studying philosophy in college. The fact is, I didn’t really know what I wanted to do in “the real world.” I saw my friends apply to graduate school out of sheer panic instead of going into the working world. I knew I didn’t want to get another degree, so into the working world it was.
My very first job was at a consulting firm. Unfortunately, it quickly became apparent that I wasn’t very good at what I was doing. However, I was the only person who could actually talk to people at that company, which is how I became the go-to person when they were developing a sales team. As a salesperson, I quickly found my stride, and started to love what I was doing. Apparently, I have always been a salesperson at heart.
My days as a salesperson were filled with talking to a wide variety of exciting people, and providing solutions to them. And, I got paid to do it! I was in heaven, and the commissions were great.
But everything wasn’t always sunshine and rainbows. At this company, we were tracking our leads on a giant whiteboard. Efficient, right? Well, as you can imagine, when sales started to amp up, things got a bit… messy. I knew there had to be a better way. Little did I know, this was going to be the start of my career-long quest for a solution to this problem.
After leaving the company, I realized that I had a passion for sales. I then began consulting for companies to help make their sales teams more effective. Naturally, this led to me helping with CRM implementations, which seemed great at first. Finally there was a way to keep track of everything in one place. But, it wasn’t user friendly, and required a lot of data entry and effort on the part of the salesperson. And above all, these implementations just never worked. After being in the industry for years, I realized that salespeople needed something even better.
Even after my last company was sold, I couldn’t stop thinking about why were never able to make CRM “just work.” Then, after watching a movie on AI (artificial intelligence) called Her, I realized: instead of trying to fix a technology that was never designed to make salespeople effective (it was a tracking tool, after all), AI presented a huge opportunity to focus on solving the actual problem. And so, in 2014, Spiro was born.
At Spiro, our mission is to help companies close more deals, faster. We introduced a new approach, proactive relationship management, designed to work for the salespeople, not the other way around. And even though I’m the CEO, I still run the sales team, because I’ll always be a salesperson first.
So while becoming a salesperson is a bit of a (happy) accident, creating a career focused on sales was a choice. Sales has given me confidence and helped build long-lasting relationships, and with my latest company, the opportunity to create the technology I wish I had when I started out in sales.
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