itnig

Create engagement with the consumer through qualified communication

Ana is Account Executive in the Success department of Quipu. It means that her principal function is to be in contact with consumers, namely the bookkeepers, in order to reach their demands and expectations regarding the service Quipu offers. Ana gives them the necessary tools to cover all their needs and solve their problems. For example, if a client has the opportunity to improve his use of the software, but isn’t aware of it, Ana is responsible to help him make the most out of Quipu. Her final goal is to generate engagement with clients to establish a long term relationship.

A different communication for a different function

If today Ana is in the Success department, she has experienced another function in the Sales department. Ana used to be Inside Sales Manager which requires a different type of communication. Indeed she was the first contact with the client, who doesn’t know Quipu and has never heard about its service. In this function, it is important to introduce Quipu to the clients and to show him what the software can bring to his business in order to close the deal. The aim of the Sales department is to acquire new clients by showing them how Quipu can facilitate their daily life and improve their decision-making thanks to real-time data. Once the account is closed, Sales passes the torch to Success. In the Success department, the communication with the clients is all about creating engagement and long term relationships. These two departments require different approaches. In Sales, you need to be “straight to the point” and audacious. You have to detect problems and opportunities quickly to be able to anticipate. However, in Success, you have more time to care about the client, to get to know him better, and to create and maintain the relationship. Ana experienced both departments and succeeded in adapting her communication to understand his clients better.

An ambitious start in Quipu, which ended up in great memories

When Ana arrived in Quipu 10 months ago, at that moment there were only few people in the Sales department. They had to create a new sales department, which is very ambitious. Indeed, it requires establishing new relationships with your colleagues and figuring out how to create, work and collaborate with them effectively. Thanks to synergies and shared skills, this was a success. And this sales project, even though how complicated it was, was the best part for Ana.

An environment allowing relationships, experience, learning and changes

What Ana likes the most in her job are the people and the environment she’s working in every day. Firstly, “the people in Quipu are amazing, you can have nice relationships with them”. Secondly, the environment allows employees to acquire a lot of experience. “In Quipu, you need to be able to adapt yourself, you need a lot of capacity of transformation and capacity to learn because the every day life and the working environment is quite fast”. This allowed Ana and her colleagues to learn more by moving on function rapidly. What Ana likes about this, is the capacity and the possibility they have to see the company as a whole. Indeed, thanks to these changes and flexibility, they have a full understanding of Quipu, its whole strategy and how the business works.

An impactful work, with the help of the colleagues

Ana’s best memories in Quipu are the important sales closed by her and her team. It is always a nice moment because she sees how happy people are. For every new client, Ana or one of her colleagues rings the bell to announce the good news to the colleagues. This is a tradition here in Quipu.

Every month, her department has a different objective. They work individually in order to achieve this common goal. If one of them has any problem or any doubt, they help each other out to solve it. Among the several life experiences Ana had in Quipu, the best one she had was the biggest account she closed, two months ago. She had been dealing with it for six months, and this was very important for her. Once it was done, she felt so happy and proud of herself and her team, which supported and helped her a lot during these 6 months to achieve this goal. What Ana likes the most in her job, is when she makes efforts real and possible. After trying different strategies to sell the product, it is always a pleasure to see they find the right solution which actually brings concrete results, such as closing an account.

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O.

On sales leadership

These are some values that I learned that define a leader:

– A leader is somebody who reaches their goals and achieves beyond their individual abilities aligned with their own values and the organization’s values. A leader without a team is not a leader. A leader works for the team, not the other way around.

– Humbleness. Leaders must get to know themselves first, acknowledge their limitations. Acknowledge they have no recipe for success (no one does). They will succeed only by being curious and trying things faster, testing, changing things again, failing again, learning as fast as possible. In sales, everybody notices when things work well, success is measured in € vs budget. A leader must embrace results with no buts and take action to reach the goals.

– A leader works harder, a leader cares about the goals more than anybody else, they took full ownership of the goals. A leader does about anything to remove bottlenecks away on his team, they assist, train, support everybody, anything it takes. They are always the best resource for their team.

– A leader will always be available for everybody in their team, for personal and professional issues. They go the extra mile. They make sure everybody knows that. They earn the team’s trust.

– A leader makes everyone aware that teamwork is not negotiable. Without a cooperative team, there’s no leader. Lone wolves kill the growing/changing organization. Growth happens only WITH the team, not at their expense.

– Leaders communicate all the time, they don’t keep things to themselves, they are honest with their team. They share good and bad. They share the why’s. They trust their team. Trust precedes process and it is the only path to grow at a scale.

– Leaders learn fast and learn mostly from their team. The team has the most valuable knowledge a leader can get, it doesn’t come from books, blog posts, degrees or mentors. The team gets the real shit from the front line. A leader listens to their teams’ impressions and ideas, they explore them all and give feedback. Leaders generate a culture of idea generation and idea sharing. Leaders stay away from guru preaching.

– It’s important to understand people’s personal and professional ultimate goals and motivations. Leaders spend time asking them on their one on ones and they think about them. They write them down. Everybody is playing the movie of their lives, a leader must find out which one is it, they make sure each team member keeps being the hero of their movie.

– Leaders always lead by example, not by title. They show real bravery. Leaders go first to battle. They call leads and close customers. They apologize to customers when the company screws up. They take the shit first. They don’t leave anyone behind. They don’t show their rank, their status, their difference, their pedigree. Startups are flat meritocratic organizations. Leaders must understand well the company goals and they put them first, they are prepared to step down, or step aside, or leave the company at any moment if needed. Company goals are what matters most. Leaders show this to everyone. Company/collective oriented leaders always thrive.

– Leaders celebrate every victory. They visibly show the pain of every defeat. They take every opportunity to show they care. They analyze why/what/how and find out always changes to be made. Then they go and make the changes. They change anything or everything, but never keep on doing what doesn’t work. They shake the whole company inside out before/when goals are not met.

– Leaders set goals that are both ambitious and achievable. They work along the team to make sure they meet the goals. They are flexible when the goals are set wrong. They are implacable when goals are not met.

Most people will never be a leader. It takes time and patience, it takes survival skills, it takes real personal strength. But after committing to all these things, things start to work. Leaders are such when and only when they brought teams to make things work, nobody becomes a leader just by trying it. True leaders make sure they don’t leave the boat until things work (as they will work, ultimately!). They don’t leave the job undone.

– Bernat Farrero CEO at Itnig