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Most valuable skill going from SDR -> AE? (SaaS)

Hey Everyone,


I've been in sales for ~3 years. Always in a cold outbound SDR role (what's a marketing team?).


I've done moderately well and should be getting the elusive AE promotion in the coming months. Before I get there, what are some of the key skills I should try to pick up ahead of time to hit the ground running?


I've already ordered a few sales books to try to understand the difference between old school Sandler stuff to more modern Challenger Sales to see what feels best for my personality.


S.A.D.N.E.S.S


TIA


☁️ Software Tech
😎 Sales Skills
🀘 Personal Growth
5
spoderman
Arsonist
+10
Friendly Neighborhood Spoderman
I recently made the jump as well, and one of the best pieces of advice was don't give up your outbound work.Β 

Don't expect to hit the ground running, you are going to stumble at first but learn from your failures and challenge yourself everyday to improve on something.Β 

Good luck!
AlecBaldwinsHairline
Valued Contributor
+5
SDR Manager
Emotional intelligence
Ilhabela
Good Citizen
BDR
Spoken like a true manny haha, thanks
AlecBaldwinsHairline
Valued Contributor
+5
SDR Manager
A manny who was a successful AE.

I see it everyday.Β  You can't even get your Discos to show at a 80% hold rate - how TF you expect to not get ghosted post pricing hahaha
fuzzy
Notable Contributor
+21
CMO (Chief Meme Officer)
Knowing when to not talk and let the customer do the talking. Being able to close things that have $ attached rather than meetings.Β 
Beans
Politicker
+9
Account Executive
I'd recommend Sales EQ by Jeb Blount as well.

But for the skillset, rapport building, demo/presentation skills, and asking the right questions.
Ilhabela
Good Citizen
BDR
All great suggestions! Any idea how I can practice rapport building? I'd like to think that of all the calls I've made that's been some form of rapport building experience already?
Ba
Bandido
Politicker
+3
Client Director
Just.....FUCKING...Listen!!!

Biggest thing I see new AEs do is try soooo hard to think of what they are going to ask next that they don't listen to what the client is saying and completely steer the conversation in a different direction.Β 

As an SDR moving forward if you get the chance to listen to your AEs calls pay attention to what the client is saying and see if your AE asked their next question based on listening or based on what they wanted to say next.Β  Pay attention to that, because most AEs are guility and if you can get ahead of this early on you can create a lot less negative behavior change for you down the road.
Ilhabela
Good Citizen
BDR
Great advice! I still struggle with this at times and say the answer without thinking more about the "why" behind the ask to dig deeper. Figure out what they care about and they'll sell themselves
Coffeesforclosers
Notable Contributor
+11
Director Sales and Market Development
Understanding and letting silence run its course. Silence is OK
CaneWolf
Politicker
+12
Call me what you want, just sign the damn contract
Work ethic. You need to learn as much as possible in the beginning.
Ilhabela
Good Citizen
BDR
Good shout, do you mean more about customer personas or our offering? what's the most important thing to learn?Β 
CaneWolf
Politicker
+12
Call me what you want, just sign the damn contract
I'm not a huge believer in customer personas as I think it makes people ignore the individual for the archetype. Know your product, shadow the best sellers, prospect your ass off, listen to the technical folks when they talk about the product (but probably not when they think they know how to sell it), etc.
33
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