This is the final segment of the conversation I had with Mary.
In Part 4, Mary and I talk about:
- Bringing value
- Openness to change
- Having a mentor
- Getting the “good leads”
- Hiring great salespeople
Download The Power of Authentic Persuasion ebook
Enroll in the Authentic Persuasion Online Course
Connect with Mary on LinkedIn
Mary Lombardo, Founder of Absolute Impact Corporation, a sales development firm that helps start-up and midsize companies increase profits through custom-designed sales solutions. Connect with her on LinkedIn and Twitter.
Mary has served in Executive Level Leadership and Management roles her entire career, generating revenues from $14 -$60 million dollars that led her to win the coveted title “Salesperson of the Year” both in 2008 and 2009 and joining the Million Dollar Club in 2007. Mary spearheaded and landed a colossal level win while in her role as the Senior Strategic Partnership Leader for Evans Newton, Inc. included a $5M sale for districtwide whole school reform programs that produced double-digit corporate profits.
Her clients have included:
• CEOs of F1000 companies
• CEOs of national education institution
• VPs of HR at national retail chain stores
• VPs of HR at national aerospace engineering company
• VPs of HR at a national real estate agency
• VP of HR at a national retirement facility
• Owners of Statewide Food Distribution companies
• District Superintendents nationwide
With 23 years of sales experience, Mary has a broad and deep scope of all aspects of the pipeline—from lead to close. She began her career as a field sales rep carrying a quota, climbed her way up the corporate ladder to VP of Sales for two f1000 companies. At the time Mary left the corporate world to launch Absolute Impact Corporation, she was managing nationwide sales teams, and sales Directors and still carried a quota!
In addition, Mary studied ballet for 10 years, is a wish granter for the Make-A-Wish Illinois Chapter, a volunteer at Lutheran General Hospital, a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) working with the Cook County Juvenile Court, a lover of theater, and a proud mother of two children.
E125 – Transcript
Jason: Welcome back once again, sales experience podcast. My name again is Jason cutter. This is the final part of my conversations with Mary Lombardo and so excited that you’ve made it this far. Hopefully, listen to the other three parts in this conversation just to a continuation from the final part and at the end she’s going to share how you can reach out to her.
Jason: how you can find more information about her and her company and the services she provides. We had a great time talking about all this going back and forth and again, check out all the information about this show and any other shows that I have on the podcast. cutterconsulting.group.com/podcast transcripts, show notes, links bio’s information. And if you want to get in touch with me regarding my services for how I can help companies, please make sure to go to the website there. You can use the contact page, you can send me an email, email@example.com and then also make sure to follow this show, subscribe everywhere you can find it so you can get the latest episodes. Please leave a rating and a review if possible. All of that really helps. And then also you can find me on LinkedIn as well. So now for the final part, enjoy, and this is Mary and I wrapping up this episode.
Mary: Hi Mary Lombardo bring value to their company. And that what I bring with me brings value. So ideally those people are open to change, which you know, I think most people are not open to change. Not that I would put myself in that category.
Jason: Well, and I think on that side note, just, you know, because some people might be mad and say, why am I open to change? I think everyone is open to change in certain areas of life and maybe not all of them. I am open to change in a lot of areas except maybe when it comes to skydiving and bungee jumping, I’m not, so, I mean, I guess I am. Somebody really wanted to do it and I, I might try it. Yeah, I think as far as you’re saying, so most people aren’t the change, but obviously like you were saying.
Mary: I mean, I do not believe that. Look at smokers for why and now I might have smokers be mad at me. Like I’m an ex-smoker. So, so no offense to the smokers out there, but you know, it’s just, um. I don’t think change is that comfortable. So a good sales experience, one of the components is trust. They trust me. They trust, I bring value, they trust what I’m going to do for them is going to help. They trust my knowledge base. They know that I’m an expert at what I’m talking about and I’m going to solve their problems and that they are at least marginally open to change. Because if there’s a problem in whatever company, in order to fix a problem, it typically requires some level of change. Yeah. To fix a problem and then having adoption. So people need to embrace the change, the solution, the service, the ideas, and adopt it in order to solve whatever problem that would be an ideal sales situation.
Jason: Got it. And now when talking about your business here with what you do, when you went about this to kind of work with clients, right? And in your business and selling to others, your services, how did you build out your sales experience and process? What did that look like?
Mary: So I worked and still work with, even though you know, I’ve been in the field for 23 years, I have a business mentor, I have a sales mentor, so coaching, so you know, like I walk the talk and so coaching never stops because I don’t know everything. And even if the similar situations come up, I only have my own brain to think with. And so I need to, when I say it’s ideal, if people can keep an open mind, I need to keep an open mind, other people’s input because I don’t know everything. So I have listened to the advice of mentors and people that have been in the business much longer than I have and built out processes and procedures that we collectively agreed to that I draw from my background, my experience, and just bring it to market.
Jason: That’s awesome. So the next three or the final three questions I think we’ve already covered, but I’m going to run through them and then you let me know if there’s anything you want to add. So the first one is what do your top salespeople do? And now this year, not so much for you, more for your clients. So you’re helping them with their salespeople and their hiring and their training. So it’d be what their top salespeople do that make them successful. Also what their unsuccessful sales reps do or what you’ve seen in your experience that unsuccessful sales reps do. And then when hiring sales reps, like what attributes do you look for? Is there anything to add for those? Like the top reps, the unsuccessful, and then you know, looking for, for hiring? Yeah,
Mary: So successful, I mean, right off the bat, in my opinion, and in my experience, successful sales rep are tenacious. You have to be, in my opinion, tenacious, in order to hunt and kill and find and do all of the steps involved in bringing a sale to close. You have to have tenacity and you have to care and be honest and you have to know what you’re talking about. So you have to be smart, you have to know what it is that you’re selling. If you don’t know what you’re selling, that will absolutely be transmitted. But I think tenacity is the absolute number one attribute of a successful salesperson.
Jason: And then unsuccessful. Anything to add to that?
Mary: I would say unsuccessful are those people that do not take 100% responsibility for themselves. So the blamers, the excuse binders. So you know, at the end of the day in sales you’re only as good as your last sale.
Jason: But Mary, what about the leads? Because the leads aren’t good enough, right? If I have, I only had the good leads, then I could make more sales.
Mary: That’s the person Jason who’ll be very unsuccessful.
Jason: Oh, oops. Okay. Alright. And then what about hiring people to attributes beyond what you said? I mean cause sometimes it’s tough, right? Because in interviews, you know, especially if you’re hiring for salespeople, they’re salespeople, they know how to sell, they’re going to sell you on what they think you want to hear. You got to get to the truth. And again, this goes to the salespeople out there who are listening, who are looking for a job, you know, with selling themselves. Also keep in mind what a company might be looking for.
Mary: You know, if it’s your first sales job, you’re not going to have a history to speak to at some point when hiring a salesperson, bringing a demonstrable history to the forefront of an interview is important because it will show the hiring manager that you have had X amount of success in opening a new business. And expanding a current business, a tenure at a certain company and you’ve contributed X amount of dollars to, you know, the bottom line. And clearly, with any sales resume it’s all going to be about expanding, you know, increasing revenue by a certain percentage. So that’s the tangible piece, you know. Then there’s the soft skills like are they relatable, can they speak and coach in sentences, you know, why I would question why they want a career in sales or what I want to continue a career in sales. So those are some of the things I mean, but typically in hiring manager or a sourcing person is really going to look at those numbers that are on a resume for a salesperson.
Jason: And to your point as well. So if you’re new, new in sales and you’re getting into a sales role, obviously that’s not one that requires a lot of experience, but you have the skills. It’s just making sure to focus on what you do have that are strengths. And because if you’ve listened to this show at all in the past and anybody else I’ve talked to and Mary hitting on it as well is that you know, the tenacity, the curiosity, all of those attributes. If you have them then that will fill in the gap and the rest of it is just teaching you the product and some sales skills to add to it. Right. Real quick cause I just thought this question cause I was thinking about how much hiring and training you’ve done. Is there anything interesting or kind of crazy that you’ve tried in a recruiting process? Like interviewing to kind of throw off salespeople or try to find out different things about them? Any kind of sales style or training or recruiting style.
Mary: I wish I had a fantastic hilarious story to tell you Jason but I don’t.
Jason: I don’t know. Like, cause I just think sometimes when I’ve done recruiting, like try in group interviews, trying individual ones, trying different tests, having them memorize scripting to see who will put in the effort and the hard work and trying different things to just kind of cut through the BS of salespeople selling themselves in an interview and get to the real person and see how they act under pressure. You know, that’s always interesting.
Mary: No but you’ve given me some really good ideas.
Jason: I think that works. You know, one of the things that I, I had heard somebody else did this and I do this from time to time as well is when recruiting to literally just not get back to the person or ignore them and see who is tenacious and comes after me.
Jason: Right? Instead of me like, Hey, I’m following up and I’m going to offer you this job. We have a good interview. And then see if that person will approach me for a follow-up and find out the status. Uh, that’s when I always know it’s going to be a home run. That’s the person who will reach out to me and say, Hey, I haven’t heard from you in like three or four days. You know, what’s the next step? Are you still interested in hiring or can I talk to somebody else? That’s the person who when you put their butt in the seat, we’ll do the same thing with their pipeline instead of expecting everything to come to them. That’s just the tip. In case you’re looking for a sales job, do the same thing you would do with your pipeline to succeed.
Jason: Do that with your role in getting a job and applying and being a candidate. Do the same thing. Treat that hiring manager like you would a prospect that you’re going after to close, but you’ll be successful every time. Probably the same way you’re successful in sales. So now as we wrap this up, Mary, and I appreciate you being here. This was so fun. Where can people go? Again, I don’t do interview shows, so all your links are going to be in the show notes, all the information, as much stuff as you want, but for people listening right now, where’s a good place for them to go to find out more about you, about your company if they need help with any of this, where’s the best place?
Mary: Well, you can email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org or they can find me on our website at www.absoluteimpactcorp.com
Jason: Perfect. And Mary, thank you for being on the show. This is so fun to talk to somebody who focuses on training and recruiting and just kind of, again, like my whole goal, improving the sales process and helping professionals just be successful. So thank you for being here.
Mary: It’s been my pleasure and Jason, thank you so much,and all the best to you.
Jason: Alright. I appreciate it now for everyone else, I appreciate you tuning into the sales experience podcast. Again, for complete show information, go to cutterconsultinggroup.com/podcast you’ll find the episode there with the transcript, with all of Mary’s links, and thank you so much for listening and working on your sales experience, whether you’re a sales rep, a manager, owner of a company, as always, the way I like to leave you every single time, keep in mind that everything in life is sales and people remember the experience you gave them.