This is our interview with Mark Kosoglow, VP of Sales at Outreach. You can follow Outreach at @outreach_io.
Sales Assembly: Give us your quick background in sales.
Mark: As a teenager, watching 14 videos in the back storeroom on a 7" black and white TV to learn how to sell shoes at the mall was a great foundation. Running a small business with 200+ employees taught me how to be organized. Creating a highly profitable sales territory from one dead for a decade was hard work. Managing 20 salespeople across nine states cemented my sales philosophy. Now, I'm building a world class sales team leveraging the greatest Sales Engagement Platform in the world.
Sales Assembly: What's your biggest accomplishment in sales or sales leadership?
Mark: Taking Outreach from $0 to where it is today.
Sales Assembly: What's the best piece of sales advice you ever got?
Mark: Ask the best people what they do, listen and do. Don't recreate the wheel. Once you've mastered it, then make it yours. Tweaking something you don't understand usually means you'll mess it up.
Sales Assembly: What's the biggest challenge facing a sales rep today, and how would you recommend they overcome it?
Mark: There is more noise than ever. It's harder to break through. A rep needs to stand out to get the meeting, to win the deal and to help create customers that love your product. While you do all that, you also have to amass and process the data to create a playbook that can guide your sales team to success.
Sales Assembly: Do you currently have a mentor when it comes to sales, or have you ever? If so, what did they teach you?
Mark: Not currently. I have had many. Rene Ulloa was my first mentor who catapulted me forward to another level. He gave the advice above...more like taught it to me through a bunch of horrible lessons I forced on myself.
Sales Assembly: What's the best sales book you've ever read? What are you reading now?
Mark: New Sales. Simplified. = Best
Gap Selling = Just Read
Sales Assembly: Best sales or business related articles, podcasts or newsletters?
Mark: Modern Sales Pros.
Sales Assembly: What's the best advice you'd give to someone just starting a career in sales?
Mark: See above. In addition to that, understand how to do world-class discovery.
Sales Assembly: Do you see any interesting future trends as it pertains to sales?
Mark: The sales "gut" is dying a slow and painful death. Reps, managers and leaders need to figure out how to quickly become data-driven. Data is the only path to repeatable, predictable success at the scale and growth rates investors demand.
Sales Assembly: I hear you coach reps to "jump the pain hole." What the heck is that?
Mark: We have broken down the discovery call into four main parts, and the discovery section is the 2nd, and possibly, most important part. Great discovery follows this path Q > LTA > DPH > DC > FS > ID.
Q - Question. Have a great scripted question to start an engaging conversation. You can kickoff discovery the same way every time. Do it in a great way.
LTA - Listen to the Answer. Sounds easy. Few reps do it. Listen so you can formulate the next question. Most reps sell after the first answer. That's a mistake.
DPH - Dig the Pain Hole - A singular answer is the first stroke of the shovel in the dirt. You have to dig to get to the treasure. It's rarely one shovel stroke deep. Dig that pain hole!
DC - Diagnosis and Confirm. You are digging the pain hole to create a hypothesis of what their pain is and why it exists. Share with them your diagnosis and confirm it is correct. Whether you get it right or not, it shows you are listening and thinking critically, and they'll alway share additional information.
FS - Future State - Share the future state they can exist in. Share the vision of not living in the pain hole.
ID - Inner Dialog - Ask a how/what question after you describe the future state to understand how they are processing what you just shared.
It's an amazingly easy to understand acronym QLTADPHDCFSID. So simple and so powerful...ok, not simple but very powerful indeed.