Are you considering a career in sales- or looking to take your sales career to the next level? When you join Gartner’s Sales team, you unlock endless possibilities for your career. When it comes to your career journey, you’re in the driver’s seat. How far can you go? Well, that’s up to you!
In a recent discussion with Melissa Wells, Managing Vice President Business Development she shared about her experience in various sales roles at Gartner, how she grew her career and tips to help you advance yours. Read on to learn more.
1. How long have you been associated with Gartner?
It’s been 9 years. I’ve had many roles in this time across Global Technology Sales (GTS) and Global Business Sales (GBS), including: Midsize Enterprise Sales (MSE) Account Manager, Sales Manager, Senior Sales Manager, Large Enterprise (LE) Business Development Director, Regional Vice President Business Development, and Managing Vice President Business Development.
2. What’s the best career decision you have ever made?
This is a hard one - but it’s probably when I took the chance and joined Gartner in 2013 as an Account Manager. This was my first sales role - I wasn’t sure if I would be good at it and wasn’t sure if I would like it, but I knew my traits aligned with the traits of those who have been successful in sales. I seized the opportunity to jump outside of my comfort zone to learn new skills and it turned out to be the beginning of an incredible journey. I am so thankful that I chose Gartner (and that Gartner took a risk in hiring me, without any prior sales experience). I have crossed paths with so many great, talented, diverse people at Gartner and without taking that first leap, I would have missed out on so much!
3. Your growth with Gartner has been amazing. You’ve constantly qualified for incentive trips and awards such as Winners Circle Eagle and Global Top Achiever Awards, you have mentored many new sales hires, and have transformed your skills and experience in so many different ways. What would you say had the greatest impact on your ability to achieve this continued success?
Surrounding myself with leaders, peers and mentors who are better than I am in some way has helped my career growth immensely. This has provided me with opportunities to learn and expand my perspective on what drives long term success. It’s also helped me build a network of people I can count on for direct feedback, advice, and a fresh look at challenges. Diversity in perspective has challenged my thinking over time and opened doors for me professionally.
4. What’s one piece of advice for other women looking to grow a career in sales?
First, always keep your values at the forefront when you are evaluating organizations, teams and roles. What is important to you on a personal level should align closely with what you are driving towards as a business. Ask the questions early to make sure the role is one you would truly grow in and enjoy. I am a mother of three young children, and at Gartner I have always been supported by my teams, peers and leaders in maintaining a great work-life balance. This enables me to show up 100% for my family and 100% for my teams at Gartner, and has been a big factor in my growth at the company.
Second, don’t be afraid to be competitive in your own way - put yourself out there! Historically, confident professional women have sometimes been labeled as bossy or unfriendly. Don’t worry about that - if you are genuine and authentic, that will come through and benefit you in a sales career.
5. What’s your success mantra?
I have two: Comfort is a Slow Death (if you’re feeling very comfortable, you probably aren’t stretching and growing like you could be), and Fortune Favors the Bold (taking risks and challenging yourself to be bold is essential to differentiating yourself as a professional and driving success).