This is our interview with Jim Pattermann, VP of Sales at Sphera Solutions. You can follow Sphera Solutions at @SpheraSolutions.
Sales Assembly: Give us your quick background in sales.
Jim: Growth-focused sales & marketing leader with a 15+ years’ track record of strategic top-line growth building and scaling organizations.
Sales Assembly: What's your biggest accomplishment in sales or sales leadership?
Jim: Consistently achieved Year-over-Year growth targets in high-growth technology companies.
Sales Assembly: What's the best piece of sales advice you ever got?
Jim: Never let them see you sweat. My very first boss when I moved from rep to manager.
Sales Assembly: What's the biggest challenge facing a sales rep today, and how would you recommend they overcome it?
Jim: Distractions that pull reps away from funnel building.
Sales Assembly: Do you currently have a mentor when it comes to sales, or have you ever? If so, what did they teach you?
Jim: Yes, my prior CRO Jim White. He taught me to focus on execution and keep focus on a few things and do them well vs. a lot of things OK. He was maniacal about focus and ensuring consistent execution across his entire team.
Sales Assembly: What's the best sales book you've ever read? What are you reading now?
Jim: Sales Management Simplified by Mike Weinberg. The book I am reading now: The Advantage by Patrick Lencioni.
Sales Assembly: Best sales or business related articles, podcasts or newsletters?
Jim: Sales Hacker and The Bridge Group are a regular go to's for me. I also read Newsletters by Anthony Iannarino, Jeb Blount and Mike Weinberg. For specific industry related topics, I review publications to gain insight into my customers' businesses.
Sales Assembly: What's the best advice you'd give to someone just starting a career in sales?
Jim: Be curious and stay curious. Stay hungry, and don't take your eye off the ball (meaning keep your sales funnel full - the pipe is life).
Sales Assembly: Do you see any interesting future trends as it pertains to sales?
Jim: I see more going virtual, inside, video, etc. Customers are more open to taking calls, video conferencing, etc. Liquid expectations bleed from your personal life into the business world. More and more, customers are saying "I can order <anything> and get it in a day, why can't I buy software the same way?"
Sales Assembly: If you could only pick one, what is the number one leading indicator metric for sales you look at (not including closed sales) - only because I just got asked this?
Jim: New opportunities added to the pipeline