More than thick skin…

Devon-McDonald by

Happy New Year and welcome to my blog, BizDev. As you can probably guess from the title, my role at OpenView pertains to sales. More specifically, I am committed to developing and executing value-add solutions for our portfolio companies’ Inside Sales/Lead Qualification teams. In my blog posts, I plan to discuss a variety of topics: technology, marketing, the market, etc. The common thread, however, will be that topic’s impact on… you guessed it, sales.

For those individuals who were/are in a sales role, inside or outside, “hunter” or “farmer,” 2009 was sure to have brought many challenges and frustrations. Of course, there are some industries who weren’t as negatively affected by the dismal economic climate (liquor and bankruptcy law for example), but for the most part sales teams globally experienced layoffs, pay-cuts and of course very, very cautious/money-conscious prospects and customers.

As the saying goes, “Tough times never last, but tough people do.” – Dr. Robert Schuller. In a sales role, particularly one which involves making countless cold calls in a down economy, you have to have thick skin to survive. Hang-ups are inevitable. However, at the end of the day, “thick skin” is only half the battle.Beyond that personal protective barrier, a salesperson needs a sharp wit and a support system to provide him/her with the necessary training and resources to be truly successful and sell products/services most effectively. That’s where the OpenView Labs come in – in addition to a number of operational support services, the team works hard to provide our portfolio companies’ Lead Qualification Specialists, or inside sales folks, with thorough sales and marketing support to make the process of turning leads into opportunities, and opportunities into closed deals.

It’s incredible to think about what this new decade will bring, and the technological advances within the industry that will soon be unveiled. That being said, it’s truly an exciting time to work for the venture capital firm, OpenView. There are so many expansion stage new media, technology and software companies emerging, and the investors at OpenView are eager to build new relationships with high-growth companies that show true promise of becoming industry leaders. Each company that becomes a part of OpenView’s portfolio in 2010 will have a unique sales team with certain pain points and gaps in their process. I look forward to working with these teams as a support system and consistent operational resource to help them achieve their goals and become that much more successful.