Inside Sales Lessons from Josiane Feignon & Burning Man

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Keeping Your Inside Sales Teams on Fire

Diversify Your Workforce Include people of diverse ages, ethnicities, cultures, genders, and physical abilities for a truly unique and alive workplace. SAP has a goal of having 25% of their leadership roles to be filled by females by 2017; by 2020 their goal is to have 1% of their workforce positions filled by autistic people.

In Josiane Feignon’s recent newsletter, she shared about her recent trip to Burning Man. Her experience seeing an empty desert transform into a thriving yet temporary community caused her to think about how Millennials have had a similar impact on some inside sales teams. Josiane says, “Retaining Millennials continues to be an expensive challenge for many sales organizations. Solving that challenge takes something else I learned at Burning: You have to think different, be open to new ideas of what a workplace can be, and welcome all the diversity of the world into your world.”

Check out these eight ideas she came up with for keeping the fire burning in your inside sales organization. Be sure to read the full version (see this link to the web version of the email) for the full scoop on each.

  • Workforce diversity. Your customer base is probably a diverse set of individuals. Wouldn’t it be great if those diverse prospects and buyer personas recognized your company is diverse, too?
  • Hiring older workers. Talk of Millennials has been all the rage, but there are talented and focused workers out there from Generation X and the Baby Boomer crowd who are there and ready to fill the gaps left by Millennials.
  • Setting higher expectations. Many people like to paint Millennials as entitled or needy. They are actually quite productive. Instead of catering to stereotypes, set higher expectations. They can meet them.
  • Prioritizing hard skills over personality. It’s great to have people on the team who mesh well with others and fit your corporate culture. Personality does play a role in the larger scheme of things. But, don’t let charisma blind you to a candidate who may have a stronger set of hard skills that can push your business harder.
  • Rethinking rewards. Going the practical route may pay off bigger with the Millennial generation that you think. See Josiane’s rewards ideas mentioned in her email.
  • Reverse m Great idea – younger workers have ideas and skills to teach your older workers, too.
  • An open seating workspace. The open-office plan can be distracting. Check out Josiane’s advice for setting up the optimal workspace for your sales team.
  • Hiring remote workers. This is an area where we couldn’t agree more! With the right inside sales software, you can have workers anywhere. Learn more about how VanillaSoft can help you improve your remote inside sales management and improve call productivity.

What other tips do you have to share with inside sales managers looking to hang on to great sales talent?

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Genie Parker

Genie brings more than 30 years of experience in sales and marketing with an emphasis on doing business on the phone. Genie comes with a broad experience reaching into hundreds of industries including technology, manufacturing, non-profits, financial services, and business services. Prior to joining VanillaSoft, Genie Parker co-founded Parker, Murray and Associates, a remarkably successful boutique outbound call center. Genie's company consistently delivered sales, qualified leads, appointments, marketing and fund-raising services to businesses from The Fortune 500 to small businesses across the United States for 15 years.

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