The Sales Engagement Podcast
The Sales Engagement Podcast

Episode · 1 month ago

Building an International Network

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

It’s all about relationships.  

It’s true in life, and it’s true in business. People would rather buy from someone they feel they have a solid relationship with, even if it means possibly paying a bit more. You cannot discount the importance of relationships.  

Which is why it’s more important than ever before to not only establish your own personal brand, but to really focus your time and attention on making sure that your network is solid. That your network is filled with people that you care about and have relationships with.  

On this episode of The Sales Engagement podcast, we talk with Rinse Jacobs . Rinse is the Head of International Sales and VP of Digital Banking at SolarisBankAG. He was kind enough to come on the show and talk all about:  

- Why going the extra mile for relationships will always pay off in the end

- The importance of establishing your own personal brand

- How to build an international network

- Overcoming the cultural differences between your company and your international customers 

For more engaging sales conversations, subscribe to The Sales Engagement Podcast on Apple Podcasts , on Spotify , or on our website

Listening on a desktop & can’t see the links? Just search for Sales Engagement

in your favorite podcast player.

Welcome to the sales engagement, apodcast, this podcast is brought you by outreach, the leading sales engagementplatform and they just launched out reach on our reach. The place to learnhow out reach well does not reach learn how the team follows up with every leadin record time after virtual events and turns them into revenue. You can alsosee how out rewins account based plays, manages reps and so much more usingtheir own sales engagement platform. Everything is backed by data pulledfrom out reach processes and customer base when you're done you'll be able todo it as good as they do had to outreach on io on out reach to see whatthey have going on now, let's get into the day's episode all right. Thank youall for joining the sales engagement podcast today for those of you arejoining for the first time I am Katelyn Kelly senior manager of salesdevelopment at out reach for the MIA region, also e Co, founder of SDRsanonymous, and today we were, we will be talking about building aninternational network and we will be joined by Rieja obs, who is head ofinternational sales at Silarus Bank rents? Do you want to tell us a littlebit about yourself and your career up until today? The S of course thanks forhaving me happy to to give a bit of a background story of what I've beengoing through with regards to the sales experiences. So when I was the firsttime I really got involved in sales, I would say it was probably during university times when,obviously every student needs a bit of money. So one of the things that Irealized was three D televisions. You know the oneswith the glasses that were back in the day, quite quite popular. I applied forthat and started to sell so many Bravi, three Ds Three d televisions, so thatwas the very first thing. I did brew...

...that her quickly that this was notreally really my thing, so I looked at something else within the sales salesworld- and this was the company called pepper minds where you do in otherstreet sales, so you're, basically the whole day on the streets, sellingnewspaper subscription, selling donations and so on, and this is whereyou learn a lot about how to interact with people getting out of that comfortzone to approach complete strangers right, especially still being somewhatjunk fresh out of out of high school. This is where you in that uncomfortable,where you learned the most. Basically, so that's where I started finish. Mydegree then said: okay, it's time for me to look into the Asian market was atat DC for a long time. The the smart one now mostly virtual reality,business why I did a lot around. That's called it marketing partnership. So howcan we set up more relationships with non technology players to embed ourphones in there? Basically or so you learn a lot more about how do you dealwith those B Tob Sales? How did I build deal with with the relationships whichthen led me to move back to the European market at some point where Ibasically ended up at so lowers bang, which was by then a very, very youngstart up roughly twenty people, there was one commercial person in there andthen from there on out. It basically said: Let's just do what we need to doand then we'll see how the company basically grow. So you do everythingfrom sales to business, development, to integration, to K, account managementand red with the more funds coming in the more than more revenues coming inthe more people you can hire and through that building up your owncommercial organization, be very blessed to have been part of that, andstill are part of that, so that that's basically how I how I got that at ourspin, all right, so no brainer that you are heading up international sales,then, with all that experience, especially coming from a pack and thenback to the MEA market. A couple of the...

...things that you touch face: there was akind of really around relationship building, and so what I'd love tounderstand it for us to take a little bit of a deeper dive into his twodifferent areas here, one building that relationships internally so kind ofaround building your brand, as you were kind of advancing within your careerand then from their kind of moving on to how are you lover doing theserelationships to build a network around you in an in a assent? So if you wantto kind of help us understand, how did you build your brand internally withinthese companies? As you were kind of building your career yeah? I think atthe end of the day, Redeye always need to interact with all those otherdepartments within the organization and in some organizations it is more atechnical people that you need to work with an other organizations, it's moremaybe a compliance or legal legal team that you need to work with and that'sthe same, insoles Pang, so salar's bank being a full bank out of Germany. Thereis, of course, a lot of heavy regulation that comes with that, andthat means that we cannot just go out and as a white label bank or or bankingas a service, as we would call it an. I just go out and sell random solutions,but you always need to have this check back with the rest of the organization.So you need to build that report to make sure that they are also willing togo that extra mile or to deliver that last bit of information, even if it'slate or even if it's very early wit, you need to you need to create thatwillingness to support. You basically there's manydifferent ways how you can do this, but I very much believe in in having thatpersonal relationship and really have a genuine interest in what is the pointof view. They are coming from. What is it that that compliance is looking foror illegal or at a technical team and try to understand and anticipate theirresponses already, so that it's much easier for them to one one and give aresponse, but also to see hey? This guy is not just here to get a quick end,but he actually is trying to better understand them and therefore create aempathy to give you those answers. So...

...this is where you, of course, youcannot go to every single person in all of these teams, so what we have done isbasically build those personal relationships and basically championsof those departments that you can go to right. You can rely upon that. Youoften have maybe even more of a friendship with those people justbecause you have worked on so many different deals over the last year isalready all right, fantastic. I love the idea of building champions withineach or that way you guys kind of have a seamless communication throughoutkind of keeps everybody on the same page when we think about building anetwork. How have you really leverage? I mean correctly vermin but you're,overseeing that doc, German and a hat European markets yeah, so I'm in thehod of international sales for now within Salar's pint? That means theEuropean market. So initially we were just in the German market and now we'redoing that across the European market, a disas a lot to do with the licenserequirements again coming back to the regulation topic. So having hadexperience in a back, you can see, of course, that the people there do thingslikely differently than you would see in Europe or you would see in NorthAmerica, but the end of the day. What you will see when it comes to thosecultural differences. If you will that you cannot just stereotype those peopleright, but it's not just like. Oh, he who may back there for this play bookPowart or that play book will work. So I always prefer much more to look atthe personality and then you can start to draw parallels between. I have dealtwith similar type of people before. I feel this is the best play book for forthis situation. So that is a big part and at the end of the day, it all comesdown to to being yourself and understand what flow best for you. Ifyou try to be something else, so if you just try to follow a playbook, peoplewill see through that and at some point you come across as fake, and thereforethe willingness to buy goes down quite...

...significantly. A good example here ontowards the partners or clients. Is We had a situation where we were Piccini to anupcoming company here in Germany they were in the race with many otherproviders. Already we came, we came into the arth process quite late, butnone the less. We were able to catch up with them and in one of the lastmeetings we still the blue guys. Why don't? We just go play some somefootball, some some some table tennis and some and drink a beer on thebalcony, just to get that extra extra piece of relationship in yeah andafterwards we wanted our P and they said, look even though we had a muchlonger do diligence process with the other companies. We felt thatculturally and that the whole five of Solaris Ping was much more fitting toour organization and that made them close to dew. So there you can see thataligning yourself with how they want to be treat it or how they want to work orwhat providers they want to deal with definitely makes an impact, and it'snot always just about the prices or the features that you have. It can be mucho with places as well. So I know like especially I're going into differentregions. The culture nuances can be something super important and a lot ofpeople have the same concern and, like you, it said, is you have to be yourauthentic self and there's not one perfect playbook, as you kind ofoversee your sales team? What is a couple of ways that you've kind ofhelped them navigate that conversation, so they are being cautious of thosecultural nuances and they are able to still show up how they want to yeah. So,on the one hand, we prefer to have local teams, but obviously people fromthe French market often times come from from either French speaking countriesor from from from France, and there you, on the one hand, see that they oftenwill already have a network, because there's a reason why we brought them toSalarian, of course, but on the otherr...

...hand, you need to trust them enough tolet them run their own show a little bit as well. You cannot try to let thembe themselves and micro manage or tell them. This is the best way to deal witha big bank, or this is the best way to deal with the Big Tech Company you haveto let them feel as well, and you have to give them those points you have todo those post more terms to understand hey from my experience. This is whathas worked best. Maybe try that next time, so you need to give them thatauthority and the ability to to play around a little bit and to find theirown weight in which button should they push at which point in time and on theother hand, we do have weekly catch up where we just have, if it wouldn't befor for the remote working, we would share a beer and just go over thestories of the week and just understand how have you address this problem or he,however, I addressed this problem and through that Ragid, you just share thethe experiences. So this is, I think, the most important part giving themenough exposure to various personalities or types of companies sothat they can do just for themselves, because there's no way that I could say,as a Dutch person working in Germany, I could not tell a Spanish person how todo sales as pain that that doesn't make sense. I can tell you how, generallyyou should do the sales, but I cannot give you those culture nuances that youneed to deal with with a Spanish by or for example, yeah. No. For sure there,so we talked a lot about kind of how to navigate that the sale with theprospect, and so one of the things we had chatted about previously was beingthe voice of the customers throughout that entire journey. And how does yourteam really ensure that they are the voice of the cust hard, the entire way,through from prospect to customer yeah? So I think yea being the voice of thecustomer is, is one of the key jobs that sales has todo especially dealing in bit to be Sal's situations where you need to linkback to the rest of the organization, because you know there will bechallenges coming up from other...

...departments because of whatever issuedor whatever, whatever point they may raise, and the partner obviously cannotis not there to defend himself. So you need to be that spokesperson for thatorganization and the only way that you can, of course do. That is, if youthoroughly understand what the partner is trying to achieve. What he's lookingfor, what the long term and short term views and goals are for them, so thatyou basically transform yourself into being that part on yourself and throughthat on the one, and you can challenge the partner better to help himunderstand what his own evolution should look like, but also the way you can counterargument therest of the the organization might not see the same opportunity as you do soon the one an this is. This is a big part, but on the other hand, it's alsogiving the part in the feeling that you are there for him when he's not aroundwhether you are not just trying to make a quick win, but rather really look tobuild this business effectively together with them. And this is howalso long term trust is created, and what still happens is they would rathercall us from the sale side then, on some cases, their respective person,just because they know there is distrust or if they need to escalate.They know. Theirs is trust with us and that we will give them a truthfulanswer and not to say that others wouldn't, but it's just that thisrelationship is a bit more developed. Of course, that goes a long way alsowhen it comes to cross a in yeah, so kind of toe cater. We talked a littlebit about kind of building that brand internally and then also as you're kindof navigating your international sales team, and so a couple of things likeyou know, really show up as your authentic self. You have to build yourtrust and get to know the cul turninges that are there. You can't just have aone fits all approach if we were to kind of like I know, and when I kind offlip the switch a little bit on us here and I know breaking into markets- ishuge right now and kind of going into these different regions is top of mindfor a lot of people. So, as a head of...

...international sales, I can imagineyou're having to not only manage the different regions,but that man or also manage people in these regions. What are some ways thatyou've been able, especially post pandemic? What are some ways thatyou've been able to manage the workflow and the difference like time zones,especially to navigate this yeah? So when it comes to going into new markets,which has been a kicked up across this year, as we have been setting upvarious branches on the one hand- and this is what I always tell the new guysin the first two three months, especially because our cup, our productis rather complex, I tell them focus on getting to know the organization focuson getting to know the products. How is the pitch happening? I don't care inthe first month about your successor or your ability to close, because I knowfrom your previous successes that you should be able to close and therefore Icare more about having a proper training so that you can thenn enterall the various questions of the of the parts that are coming in and againbuilding that building that trust, but when it comes to managing the differenttime zones and managing the different disco strategies to enter differentmarkets. This is where we have, of course, a general framework that thatoverall fate, but let the other guys let the local commercial country headsor to general managers- let them take the lead on this and there you justguide them, you steer them and from a from a head off position, what is theKevils to find the synergies to really make sure? Okay is everybody trying tosell the same product? Is everybody trying to do something completelydifferent? How can you find the easiest way to come to a quick wing, whetherthat is product, development or specific features or getting a firstpartner and then breaking into a new market? And maybe in selecting how doyou select a market to go into? So I think that's twofold. On the one hand,you go and look into your existing customer base right who is willing toexpend with us, so you already have a...

...somewhat secured revenue for going intothis market. Yeah is a a complete risk and, on the other hand, there is, ofcourse, the research from from bister to understand, okay, how much? How? Howmany phytic are there? How many again amity banks are there in San, so yousee that there is a broader market that can be explored if you have the rightmarketing techniques as well, and then it comes down to the trends andspeaking with the markets. Speaking with association, speaking with all thedifferent players out there, who might not be direct prospects, but they willgive you those valuable insides and over time they might pop into your headagain. So you can easily reach out for a channel sales approach, for example,got it a way that makes total sense there? Would you say you know, do a lotof like networking within? Would you do you? Have your teams in the differentregions, kind of cross paning, what their strategies and communicate witheach other? Is it or do? Is it pretty silent within their regions? No, it is.It is indeed there's a lot of overlap in in what is happening so oftentimes apartner might want to start in the Spanish market, but we know- and we already want tomake sure they understand- that this is just the beginning right. The nextmarket is France or Italy or X Y S D, But this is where that crosspollination comes in and it doesn't really matter at the end of the day.Who is driving it because you know on the long term, the other market will beserved as well, and this is where it's also important to to understand thatthe relationship with the partner is more important for me than the personsitting in the market, meaning if you have a a French sales manager who has avery strong personal relationship to somebody in the Spanish market. Itdoesn't make sense to let them hand it over to the Spanish guy, just becauseit's in his market, I would rather say the French guy, leads that conversation,but he brings in the Spanish guy that's a specialist to really make sure thatthe market trends that all the again culture nuances are being tackled aswell, and then, at the end of the day,...

...how do you reconcile that on the the PL?This is where right now we have said. Let not worry too much about this andlet's focus much more on getting the customers in and make sure that therevenue in general is coming in, let's, let's sort out how we figured it out onthe promark t basis later, but let's make o Tu that to conserve thatcustomer, I am fantastic, a sin, so we talked a little bit about you knowPhilly, that building your brain interent leveraging the network aroundyou, especially as you are breaking into new markets. Faced of of yourexperience coming from selling to threds to now and thinking what would you say if you had torecommend one book that had the biggest impact on your professional development?What would that book be? I would say I think, I'm going to gowith how to win friends and influence people. Of course I the classic rightfrom from from the ocany. I don't know how, after you get this answer, I hopenot too often, but it's always it's Nique, to see either people will give you ones thatare like off of like got intuition and like kind of like sales or they'll, belike leadership. Psychology type one so yeah yeah exactly so, there's a lot ofthings that you can learn, especially about being genuinely interested, orhow do you really create that want in a customer or in a partner and buildingthat that conversation up to something more than just to sell, but actuallyunderstanding the broader picture of them? This is at the end of the day.What for me really made a click to understand at this is how you trulyunlock that that relationship. You have hundreds of other books thatalso make a lot of sense, but at the end of the day, following a framework,so rigidly as some books would suggest it might work for some form of salesright in intendence or on street sales. It makes sense to follow a certainprotocol when it comes to these highly...

...complex deals, you need to trust yourknowledge and your ability to work with people, and this is for me one of thebooks that helps you to do this without being overbearing with. You should donot this, but you should do that, but it's much more about principles andthen see how you apply them yourself, yeah. No, I love that one of my firstsales books that I got I was like an eighth grade and it is to sell as humanfrom by Dana Pink but yeah so kind of like pay back on that you have it's ahuman interaction, we're all people at the end of the day so o I love that.Well. Thank you. So much for sharing all of this ransom people wanted toreach out to you an connect as are breaking into new markets or in theFINTECH space. Where is the best place for them to reach you at the best placewould always be. is every sills person probably would say linking so rinsJacops? It's the easiest way to reach me just drop me at PM and happy to bein touch all right. Well, thank you so much and thank you. Everyone for WHO'slistening today and reach out to rinse on linked in. If you have any otherquestions or we like to connect and follow up for thanks for Avermi, thiswas another episode of the Sales Engagement podcast to help this get infront of more eyes and ears. Please leave us a shining five star reviewjoin us at sales, engagement for new episodes, resources and the book onsales engagement to get the most out of your sales engagement strategy, makesure to check out out reached Io. The leading sales engagement platform seeyou on the next episode a.

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