What does the career path and a day-in-the-life look like for a Manager, Channel Sales Program at Upserve?
Where did you grow up? What did your parents do for work? What was your very first job (before any internships)?
I was born and raised in Rhode Island. I’d give you the town, but RI is so small that it is ultimately irrelevant! Growing up my mother was a grinder; working late nights behind the bar while she was developing a successful career as Real Estate Agent. On the other hand, my father specialized in growing a photography business.
My career started early at age 13, where I began mastering the art of the Gastronomical Hygiene Technician – otherwise known as the finest dishwasher in New England.
Where did you go to college? What did you study and what were some of your initial jobs out of school?
I graduated from the University of Rhode Island with a degree in Entrepreneurial Management; before enrolling in the URI’s business school college. I started as a Math major, but, that dream quickly fizzled out once I dove into Calculus II – ‘what in the world am I doing here?’
Throughout college I worked nights and weekends, making my way through the ranks at Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse in Providence. The restaurant industry is very unique, in the sense that, it helps build a strong foundation for future professionals that they will carry throughout their lives. Highly recommend everyone is exposed to the restaurant industry early on!
After graduating from college, you turned your professional career towards sales. What sparked your interest in sales and how did you land a job in that field?
Following the wonder-years, I kicked off the next phase of my career at a small local RI company called TCMPi, where I was introduced to the term ‘cold-call’ as a Business Development Representative (BDR). That’s when I really started to miss college…
That said, I had a great team, resources, and training at my disposable, but more importantly, I had that grinder’s mentality. Quickly cold calling developed into strategic consulting with the customers I was targeting. I learned to love the concept of ‘no’ in that role!
You’ve worked your way into new positions throughout your career at Upserve. What has attributed to your success thus far and has helped propel you to the position you have now?
There is a lot you can teach folks entering into the professional field – processes, methodologies, product knowledge, rules of engagement, and so on. However, what I unequivocally believe has helped me succeed are the intangibles that cannot be taught; which would include work ethic, eagerness to learn, hunger to develop, and the desire to succeed without fear to fail.
Can you share the high-level responsibilities of your current position as Manager, Channel Sales Program?
- Manage, coach, expand, and retain an inside sales and business development team
- Collaborate with marketing to develop programs to accelerate sales growth
- Develop go-to-market strategizes with senior leadership to propel long-term program growth
- Build, monitor, and exceed KPIs and monthly goals
- Lead cross-functional alignment
Any tips for someone considering a career in sales?
Sales has evolved significantly over the years. It’s no longer just an art, but more of a science. You have to truly believe in the product you sell, and understand the value it can bring to your market. Don’t pursue sales simply to get into a company, or catapult into another role – it needs to be your passion. Work ethic, being process oriented, organization, empathy, and a true passion for what you do will take you a long way in this career path.
Day in the Life
Coffee, tea, or nothing?
Ice coffee, black.
What time do you get into the office?
What is something you look forward to every day in your role?
Interacting with my team! I’m very lucky to be a part of a squad where we are all completely aligned on the big picture, micro-goals to get there, and laser-focused on execution – all while having a great time. I look forward to grinding alongside this crew day in and day out and celebrating the wins.
Every day is different, but can you outline what a typical day looks like for you?
Every day is drastically different indeed with the constants being a fast-paced flow, organized chaos, adapting to change, and working among the best in class. Generally speaking, my mornings are focused on putting out fires that came up overnight or supporting a team member with their highest priority for the day. In the early afternoon, I’m usually in meetings with sales leadership and other key internal or external stakeholders, and I round out my day on the sales floor so I assist my team in real time as they are working through complex deals or problems.
What time do you head out of the office?
Do you log back in at night or do you shut it down completely?
It completely depends on the day, but I do my best to shut it down so I can come back refreshed the next day.
Any productivity hacks?
Get comfortable with delegating projects and trusting your team! Often, managers will jump in and take over a sale, or hesitate to empower their team with tasks outside of their typical bandwidth – and that simply holds back a team’s full potential.
What are the 3 apps that you can’t live without?
SalesForce, Slack, Upserve Live (selfish plug)
What professional accomplishment are you proudest of?
Being a key contributor in the movement to take a small SaaS startup in RI to an industry-wide leader. I’ve been exposed to many stages of growth like acquisitions, re-brands, hyper-growth, various VC/PE fundraising, and so much more that I’ll be able to take with me throughout my career.
Who do you admire or call upon for professional advice?
The mentors who have helped me elevate my skill-set, and career over the years. Building strong, long-term relationships with experienced leaders I can continuously learn from, is a top priority for me.
This article was written by Alyssa Oxner at VentureFizz. You can see the original article here.