“I knew early on that if I wanted to be the best, I would find out who the best sales leaders are, shadow them, and figure out what they're doing.”
Jim breaks down the importance of having a beginner’s mindset and offers insights on how you can apply it to your current role.
Jim is a customer success manager at Softbank Robotics America. He enjoys building relationships, strategizing and executing goals, and mentoring and empowering team members.
Trinity: Hi, everyone. Welcome to another Keepin’ it 100 episode. Our guest for today is Jim Gonzales, Customer Success Manager at SoftBank Robotics America, and former Business Development Representative at Cloudflare. His tips about staying curious and maintaining a beginner's mindset are relevant to us all, regardless if we're early in our careers or seasoned executives. Thanks for joining our show, Jim.
Jim Yeah, to cut to the chase. There are two words. It's a beginner's mindset. And to break this down, I started my first sales tech role at Cloudflare, a cybersecurity company, essentially. They're the infrastructure for security and performance for all my properties, such as websites.
And I learned a whole lot. So aside from hard work and coming in with that beginner's mindset, I learned a lot from my mentors and managers, just to name a few, the Bo Chris Cunanan, Nick Simmons, and kale Pasha. And it was interesting because I came up from a non-technical background. So it was very daunting and intimidating to join a very technical company.
But what allowed me to actually join that company and find success breaking records, as far as quota. Quarter after quarter was applying this beginner's mindset. So to break down that beginner's mindset and essentially what it is, is coming into work exactly with that beginner's mindset as if you're new to that company and continuing to do that day after day.
Uh, and so that's, for example, being. Insatiably curious as well as being coming prepared, uh, as far as like before demo calls, sales calls. And so I knew early on that if I wanted to be the best, I would find out who the sales leaders are, the ones who are performing at a high level, and shadow them. Listen, and now I'm going to calls and figure out what they're doing to find success.
And aside from that, it wasn't just the sales folks. It was also expanding to other teams. So I would talk to marketing product people, engineers, as well as the support team to figure out how to present our technical products, how things worked. I was always asking why to all of our other team members, and it's not just limited to the actual team members, but also when I hopped on customer calls.
Um, so before demo calls, I would do a lot of research prepare ahead of time. And I'm not talking just five, 10 minutes before a demo call. I would actually do research on the people that I would be talking to as well as the actual company, uh, who their competitors are, what is their business model, why they're even looking at our product and figure out that.
So that way, when I do go into that conversation, I'm not just talking about weather or sports as most salespeople do. I learned that from a person named Alex who also celebrated his sales growth. So with that. When you're talking to the customers, especially if you're not very technical, you can't really talk in-depth about the product you want to ask.
Why, why, why, why? And so for example, when a customer says, Hey, I want this feature as opposed to going down a rabbit hole and just. Figuring out how this will benefit the customer. You'll ask them, Hey, why is this feature important to you? And then from there, you'll be surprised at how much they'll talk about their product, their company.
And then from there, you'll be able to dial in as far as what type of product or feature you can present to them. So would that beginner's mindset. I also want to talk about being prepared. So I know as you gain more experience, you, you tend to prepare less. Um, and that's a very dangerous spot to be in.
So for example, at the beginning of every quarter, I would write a one-page. I would call it the gems, one-pager, where I would present it to all my managers and say, Hey, these are all my goals. These are all my quarter objectives. And this is how I'm going to stretch strategically exceed all of those.
And then time after time, quarter after quarter, I was able to do that. And so, and you've probably heard Trinity the term, um, you can't hit what you can't see. So it's that same exact mindset. Uh, it's basically that the beginner's mindset and there's probably listeners in here, if you are maybe new to sales, new to tech, and they could appreciate this type of advice as far as having that beginner's mindset.
But then on the flip side, there are also well-seasoned veterans who have been doing sales for countless years that are probably asking like, why should we listen to this kid who has a couple of years of experience in sales? But it's that same exact reason why I actually learned a term yesterday called the dummy curve.
So I learned it from a gentleman named Darren fan, but essentially it's when you first start a company, you're so curious. You're, you're relentless. As far as learning, you just want to learn everything, but then once you gain some experience, you hit this plateau where you're very comfortable and you limit yourself as far as how much knowledge you attain.
And that's a dangerous spot to be in. So for all those well-seasoned veterans, if ever, they want to like change their methodologies, like revert back to like recall the time when you first joined the company. And you were just like, so curious about learning new things and you'll be very surprised as far as how that helps with your customer calls, your sales calls, and just your overall career experience as a sales member.
Trinity: Do you have a note of encouragement or insights to share? Email me and we'll get you onto the show at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks for listening.