AMA with AntiAskhole: From Farmboy to AE Crushing Sales

I grew up in a small farm town in the middle of nowhere Michigan. I decided to study business in college and have a degree in Business Management... That's where Sales came in after 16 years of restaurant experience.


From crushing my quota as a BDR consistently being over 200% of annual quota, transitioning to an AE role, and rising to the top within 2 months of transition.


Being a father of three little kiddos, I had to make some things work and that's what led me to return to my old job with a pay raise, a great commission package, and a sign-on bonus.


Ask me anything, but don't be afraid of the sarcasm, that might ensue with stupid questions.


๐Ÿฐ War Stories
๐Ÿ’ฐ Compensation
๐Ÿ™Œ Events
24
RandyLahey
Politicker
8
Account Manager
Ahh a fellow restaurant degenerate like myself! Front or back of house? I didn't know it at the time, but that experience lends itself rather well to a sales career.
antiASKHOLE
Tycoon
8
Bravado's Resident AssHole
I started in BOH and bounced around to a few different chains. Then climbed to regional manager in the Detroit area. The BOH is where you get a thick skin and a sense of humor haha, and also where you learn to deal with induced depression.
RandyLahey
Politicker
4
Account Manager
yessir. I was a line cook, dishwasher, rocked the grill solo at this little hole-in-the-wall diner (my breakfast sandos still the best ever).
That prepped me for a certain kind of pressure resistance. But when I moved to front of house if where I truly gained an understanding of people. Drunk, hungry people are often at their worst.
antiASKHOLE
Tycoon
5
Bravado's Resident AssHole
Bartending was a blast though. I couldn't care less about serving tables, although I feel everyone should feel that pain at least once in their life.
RandyLahey
Politicker
4
Account Manager
Yeah when I transitioned to Barback then tending, I much appreciated. There's more power; if you keep up your rude fucking attitude you won't get served.
antiASKHOLE
Tycoon
5
Bravado's Resident AssHole
OR the drink will get a little less liquid gold and more ice.
Sunbunny31
Politicker
2
Sr Sales Executive ๐Ÿฐ
I think restaurant workers make excellent reps. I may be biased.
jefe
Arsonist
6
๐Ÿ
.
BTQ
Politicker
7
ex SDR
What was your activity level like as a BDR? What do you thing was the reason you were 200%?
antiASKHOLE
Tycoon
8
Bravado's Resident AssHole
I was a grinding machine. Strictly outbound process of averaging 150+ dials and scheduling 2-3 appts per day. I made it a goal to schedule a major account each week(which was usually 5-10x our average sale) And I had a really good AE that I was feeding everything to. Roughly 45% of my deals were closing.

My best month of revenue that was generated from my leads was about 600k which was my yearly quota to begin with.
BTQ
Politicker
4
ex SDR
Thanks - if you don't mind me asking, what industry was this in?
antiASKHOLE
Tycoon
3
Bravado's Resident AssHole
I sell copiers and educational technology(smart boards, laptops, etc)
BTQ
Politicker
2
ex SDR
So is it a lot of schools you sell too? If so, who are your target personas? Is it like prinicipals/superintendent kinda deal?

(boom 50 comments)
antiASKHOLE
Tycoon
1
Bravado's Resident AssHole
I sell to private schools mainly. We have a Major accounts person that sells to public schools because itโ€™s all annoying rfps and whatnot. I deal a lot with principals and IT directors.
Gasty
Notable Contributor
7
War Room Community Manager
LET'S GO!!!
antiASKHOLE
Tycoon
6
Bravado's Resident AssHole
What do you have for me today, sir?
Gasty
Notable Contributor
5
War Room Community Manager
I'd love to know the parallels between restaurant and Saas sales. How is it different How is it the same? Is there even any overlap, or is it a story you tell yourself everyday to keep it at it?
antiASKHOLE
Tycoon
6
Bravado's Resident AssHole
I think that there really isn't much of a comparison outside of upselling.

Something that I learned in the restaurant industry was that people don't like a ton of choices. Always present 2 maybe 3 choices max and pretty much make the decision for them.


Saas was kind of the same. It was becoming the expert and confidant for the client while not making them over-encumbered by the choice/decision to make. Simplicity made the outcome a no-brainer.
antiASKHOLE
Tycoon
3
Bravado's Resident AssHole
The skills learned from restaurant experience can transfer almost anywhere though. People skills, urgency, upselling, features(recipes)-advantages(specials)-benefits(health,etc.).
Sunbunny31
Politicker
1
Sr Sales Executive ๐Ÿฐ
This is such a great point! Too many choices can overcomplicate sales and confuse even smart customers. Youโ€™ve given me something to think about!
jefe
Arsonist
5
๐Ÿ
Thanks for stepping up, AskHole!
You seem to be doing well with something that's talked about quite a bit here, and often warned against - going back to an old employer.
Can you give us a little insight into your journey BACK to an old hunting ground? What caused you to leave, and what indicated to you that it would be good to go back? Were there significant changes to the org or environment?
Are you happy you did so? And are there any pitfalls or signs that can warn anyone considering the same against?
antiASKHOLE
Tycoon
6
Bravado's Resident AssHole
Thanks @jefe . So there isn't really a short answer to this one.
The job I went back to was my first job in the sales. I really enjoyed working here and the manager I had and now have again was always doing his best to keep money flowing into my pocket.

That being said, I left for experience as an AE and more pay. I had too many responsibilities piling up and not enough cashflow. So I made the move for the money and the benefits.


Two years later, my old manager reached out to me asking what it would take for them to get me back and I laid it out simple enough with 2 things; more money and I needed a second vehicle. If they could figure that out, then I would be interested. Little did they know that my job was tanking at the time and that phone call could have been just what I needed.


They pulled through with offering $5k more base than what I asked for( which was a 25K raise overall) AND they were going to buy me a car as well. SUPER BONUS was that he added in a $3k sign-on bonus to sweeten it for me.


I can say that I am happy with how it has played out so far and I am paying them back with crushing it right out of the gate.
antiASKHOLE
Tycoon
5
Bravado's Resident AssHole
I missed the pitfalls. I mean we have seen it posted so many times. If you left because it was a cesspool of negativity, lying, and just no good... no amount of money or added benefits should allow or make you want to go back.

Fortunately, I enjoyed it, the money just wasn't there when I left.
jefe
Arsonist
4
๐Ÿ
Thanks dude, sounds like pretty compelling reasons to come back, and perfect timing!
Hard to say no that, and I think it's key to keep in mind why you left. Sounds like you parted ways for the right reasons, and nothing like you laid out in your pitfalls - which are even more important to keep in mind.
Coming to the table with more than you asked for is a great sign, and we've all seen evidence of you crushing it straight out of the date in the Win Wire.
When you left, was it to work in the same industry? Or is this a return to the copier/edtech side of things after a foray elsewhere?
antiASKHOLE
Tycoon
4
Bravado's Resident AssHole
When I left, I went to work for a Saas company dealing with Hotels and their online reputation and whatnot. Far away from copiers hahah.

This is totally a return to the copier side of the world.
jefe
Arsonist
4
๐Ÿ
Sounds like the second gig might have incorporated a bit of your hospitality experience, though!
So many people talk about SaaS as the be-all, end-all. It's cool to see you lean into hardware and absolutely kill it.
Was it just the 'nice to have' aspect of SaaS you mentioned elsewhere compared to the true need for physical tech that makes you lean that way, or are there other parts of selling something tangible you love?
antiASKHOLE
Tycoon
3
Bravado's Resident AssHole
I don't think it's a "love" at all. Hardware sales are just something that is needed in an office and very easy to overcome objections on.
jefe
Arsonist
3
๐Ÿ
Honest
HVACexpert
Politicker
2
sales engineer
Lol yep everyone needs a copier or printer still.
jefe
Arsonist
1
๐Ÿ
100%. Not sure about these newfangled 'smartyboards' the kids are on about, but they seem like they might be the bee's knees
Kosta_Konfucius
Politicker
5
Sales Rep
Got to ask with having 3 kids, how do you manage both the emotional roller coaster of sales and the financial to not affect the family life
antiASKHOLE
Tycoon
2
Bravado's Resident AssHole
This is a lot tougher than it seems.


Imagine you are drowningโ€ฆ and then someone hands you a baby. You just fight that much harder to stay above water because now itโ€™s not just you that you are taking care of.


I have a pretty decent mental shutoff and shift once I get out of the door of my office. I make it a daily effort to separate work time from family time. Itโ€™s hard at times, especially when things go south on a couple of deals, but then I just remember, itโ€™s temporary and my kids arenโ€™t.
HVACexpert
Politicker
4
sales engineer
Has fatherhood changed your sales tactics? Or has it changed you somehow personally that made you a better sales person?
antiASKHOLE
Tycoon
7
Bravado's Resident AssHole
It has changed my sense of urgency and ability to be empathetic. I was a major dick before having kids, especially to those I didn't like. Having kids softened me a little bit to better understand those on the other side of the table.
Reading more also helped. As I started to read with my kids, I wanted to start reading for myself as well. People skills books for the win.
0
Retired Sales Professional
๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ‘
HVACexpert
Politicker
4
sales engineer
What is it about the tech industry that you enjoy? If you had to chose a different industry what would it be?
antiASKHOLE
Tycoon
6
Bravado's Resident AssHole
Tech industry is needed tbh. I work in copier sales in the heart of Orlando. So many corporate offices here that itโ€™s a cake walk. I tried SaaS for 2 years and it was always a โ€œlike to haveโ€ not necessarily a โ€œneed to haveโ€ in my opinion.

Iโ€™ll probably just stay in the tech space unless something godly comes around that I canโ€™t refuse.
antiASKHOLE
Tycoon
3
Bravado's Resident AssHole
I'd like to throw that question back at you as well. What do you like about the HVAC arena and would you do something else?
HVACexpert
Politicker
3
sales engineer
Oh I like it. Itโ€™s challenging and different than a lot of other arenas, I enjoy the technical nature of it. You have to understand everything from the refrigeration cycle to building energy codes.

My dad worked in pharma his whole career so maybe something like that, or I feel like selling advertising would be cool like Madmen. If for no other reason to be transported to the 60s and wear sick suits everyday.
antiASKHOLE
Tycoon
4
Bravado's Resident AssHole
the track suits would be the selling point hahahah
Revenue_Rambo
Politicker
4
Director, Revenue Enablement
I'm a restaurant transplant too. FOH and management mostly, but never shied away from getting my hands dirty on the line.
What did you find was the biggest skill you picked up and transferred to sales?
antiASKHOLE
Tycoon
4
Bravado's Resident AssHole
I think I answered this one, but it was mainly people skills and sense of urgency.
antiASKHOLE
Tycoon
4
Bravado's Resident AssHole
@bravadojanitor Do you know why this was removed from the "new" tab once it was pinned? Just curious.
oldcloser
Arsonist
3
๐Ÿ’€
I'm a huge fan of your most recent career move. There are so many lessons in that story. I'd like to know how it was that you left without the bridge getting set on fire from either end. Parting is usually less than amicable in most cases. Yet, you left with the door still open. How did you pull that off?
antiASKHOLE
Tycoon
4
Bravado's Resident AssHole
One thing I learned from my mom actually was to never burn bridges and always try my best to leave amicably. before leaving the company, I did everything I could to create spreadsheets and make things a smooth handoff for the next wave of employees. A lot of the processes and training schedules I created were what allowed them to stay positive without me and keep track of certain things.

Even while I was away from the job, I would send leads back to my old boss on things that either I remembered working on or had passed by driving down the road.

Like I said in another response, I enjoyed working here so I had no hard feelings against anyone, just needed to get paid more. At the time they couldn't pay me what I was looking for and it burned them a little bit that I left as I was generating leads that brought in almost $2m a year. Once I left, that number went down drastically and they knew they were missing a key component to continued success.

I'd like to say I'm hot stuff, but I do my best to keep my head down and do what matters, and that's making things happen and making money while doing it.
oldcloser
Arsonist
3
๐Ÿ’€
This is how an adult acts. Just solid professional... and rare. Killer example of pro behavior. I totally subscribe to the philosophy.
In my current role, I just bought from my previous employer and sold to the one before that. You just never know where the opps will come from... but you do if you create them.
Thanks for keeping this real.

antiASKHOLE
Tycoon
4
Bravado's Resident AssHole
Absolutely! You never know who will lead you to your next big break or sale. Keep things open, unless that person is an absolute piece of shit, then I'll shut the door on that quickly.
jefe
Arsonist
3
๐Ÿ
This is a great lesson! Way too many people lose sight of this and just let it burn.
I must say it's different from what your mom taught me, though.
antiASKHOLE
Tycoon
3
Bravado's Resident AssHole
My mother is a saint and whatever you have learned from her you best treasure. LMAO
Justatitle
Big Shot
1
Account Executive
Why is it always hospitality leading to sales? 8 years of bartending.
antiASKHOLE
Tycoon
2
Bravado's Resident AssHole
That is a good question tbh and this could be a great thing to conduct a study on.
I am taking a wild guess and think that due to tips and being able to control your wage(in a sense) and that makes sales that much more logical.