★ What Makes A Good Technical Sales Person?

I posted last week about how POCs can make life difficult on the engineer responsible for implementing a solution.  This got me thinking not just about POCs, but also about the person who makes the sale.  I started wondering, “What makes a good technical sales person?”.  I want to look at this through the perspective of services, rather than from the typical revenue perspective.

Obviously you need people who can close deals and bring revenue to the company.  Any technical sales person should have technical aptitude, and be honest and personable.  What other qualities should they have?

Please leave your thoughts in the comments.  I’ll post my opinion later this week.

2 thoughts on “★ What Makes A Good Technical Sales Person?

  1. My personal view for a tech sales person (TSP), is that they main job should be to control user expectation. Yes, you want the user to be excited about your product, and that’s the sales persons job; but you don’t to sell the customer an F-16 when you make Chevy’s.

    I don’t want to say he is there to keep the sales person honest, but I would say that is their first job.

    Second, I would say that their job should be to make POC’s as close to production settings as possible.

    But, now that I think about sales and tech sales, the problems really come down to compensation and who they report to. Obviously, the sales person is on commission and reports to the VP of Sales, but who should the tech sales person report to? If they report to the same person, they will be judged by the same metrics of how many sales, but quality of sale needs to be accounted for as well.

    A TSP should report to engineering and represent them. So, if the quality of customer is bad, they can show the POC’s to the engineers, and the they should know if the TSP is being honest or showing hacks.

    This is where the problems come in, teaming a SP with a TSP, that have the same metric and managers, are more dangerous than SP alone. Now you have a SP with a partner that can tell him how to hack the system to make it do some cool fragile and complicated stuff.

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