The Sales Engagement Podcast
The Sales Engagement Podcast

Episode · 4 months ago

Growth Mindset Tactics to Build Your Team


It’s one thing to embrace change personally, but it’s another thing altogether to bring people along with you in your growth mindset. Want to learn how?

In this episode, I interview Talia Esskandanian , Director, Inside Sales at Voltus, Inc ., about leadership, growth, culture, and change. 

Join us as we discuss:

Talia’s newfound passion for the energy industry

Hiring for core values and strategic interview questions

Overcommunication and other coaching tips

Building a growth mindset into your team

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

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in your favorite podcast player.

Welcome to the sales engagement podcast.This podcast is brought to you by outreach, the leading sales engagement platform, andthey just launched outreach on outreach, the place to learn how outreach welldoes outreach? Learn how the team follows up with every lead in record timeafter virtual events and turns them into revenue. You can also see how outreach runsaccount based plays, manages reps and so much more using their own salesengagement platform. Everything is backed by data pulled from outreach processes and customer base. When you're done, you'll be able to do it as good as theydo. Head to outreach that io on outreach to see what they have goingon. Now let's get into today's episode. Hello everyone, and welcome back toanother episode of the sales engagement podcast. My name is brick Pachesta and I'mone of your hosts here at the Sep. When I'm not hosting thispodcast, I leave Xtr enablement, that outreach that I oh. I'm superthrilled to be here today and joined by Tallya ESCANADIAN director of inside sales fromBoltis. Today will be talking about building teams and growing your culture with agrowth mindset so Talia, thank you for joining us. How are you today? I'm doing great. Thanks for having Ma'am super excited, huge fan ofthe podcast. To so nice house. If so, tell us. Tellus about yourself. I know you kind of new ash job just started,coming up on a year to congratulations. For those who may not be familiar, what is Voltas do and what's your role there now? Yes, Ihelp lead the inside Sales Seema Volta. So voltas has primary mission is tounlock the value of distributed energy resources. We are involved in demand response.So demand response or programs designed to help balance the supply and demand of thegrid. So we have our customers get paid to curtail or energy usage duringgrid emergency's so mitigating. But yeah, it's we variable cause, yeah,very literally save lives. It's I mean so, especially with all the recentweather events. Now it really shines a light on how dire it is thatwe ensure. Yeah, you know, global energy challenges are our met ahundred percent. And the inside sales steam like. Who are they calling on? Usually commercial and industrial customers, so really large energy users. So coldstorage, healthcare facilities, wastewater treatment plants, things of that nature. Interesting anddid you have a background and energy before you got into this role?No, I had literally no knowledge of any energy, you know verbiage.I am in Texas, and so when we had the crazy, we calledit snow apocalypse in February us, that was very, yeah, very scary. And now was the first time I'd heard about her cought and demand response, and that was actually when they reached out to me and I was like, HMM, this is curiously yeah, and I'm, you know, abig advocate of sustainability and and I found that the mission was just aligned withsomething that I wanted to do, something that I'm innately interested in. Soit's been a great fit so far. It's actually only been about three months, so not even Oh God, way off. It's okay, it's okay. It feels like you are. Huh. Yeah, I've lost track of timein the pantic. I don't know what day it is where I amthere. That's really cool. So, like, so, when they reachedout to you, was there a specific initiative that you were brought on toaccomplish? Yeah, yeah, so I came on board after our series befunding with the expectation that myself and the other sales leaders would help scale theteam's and work on building a more repeatable sales process really across the entire organization. So we have super have two goals.

After any other company, right,like, no matter how flushed out your plan is, if you don'thave the right people in place, it's you know, you might as wellpack up and go home. So I'm here to build, build, build, cool. It's like the dream job for every sales leader, right tobuild something from the ground up and do it exactly the way you want to. That's pretty awesome. Yeah, it was great. It's definitely something thatI was seeking in my job search anyways. So, yeah, super comfortable inthat space. Love it, thrive on it also. Yeah, andin order to build any team, scale the process and people, you haveto are a lot of great people. And with hiring I find that alot of times, like the topic of culture comes up. So not onlyare they qualified, but do they pass the culture test? And we allknow that culture test does not mean the beer test or like we get it, you know, hang out with them a happy oh well, that's anice perk. We got to make sure that they fit in with the companyand your value. So like, could you tell me about, like what'sthe culture revoltis like when you're working for fects? Yeah, yeah, it'sdefinitely one that I've never seen in my lifetime. There's one of the drivingfactors that got me to leave video security and surveillance. I tolist everybody whenthey ask like why Woltest, but I was interviewing actually with a couple differentcompanies and I wanted to stay kind of in the text bace and and thatwas where my where I thought my passion was, was driven towards. Atevery hiring manager I talked to and sales later, you could just feel theburn out right and you can't blame them. Obviously I was in the same boat. Part of the catalysts why I was looking right and as soon asI started meeting with voltest leaders, you could just feel the difference. Theystarted speaking about it and the energy and love within the team, which issomething they really yeah and talk through, was palpable. Everyone was really fosteringthis environment of inclusivity and empowerment. One of their pillars is speaking truth topower, and so we talked a lot about that or coming on board andjust making sure that people feel heard and not necessarily dismissed, which is it'sharder to find, you know, when you're in larger companies, because youmight have great ideas or concerns and maybe it falls on deaf ears, maybenot. Yeah, that volt is. It very much is like a collectivediscussion every every really cool. Yeah, yeah, tell me more about that. Like how do you do? You just seek out folks who are like? Is that part of what you're looking for? Like, are they comfortablehaving difficult conversations, or is it we bring people and we teach them howto do those things, or a little of both? It's probably a littleof both, I would say. If you'd asked US question six months ago, we're very different, like the kind of profile that I look for.Oh, I want to come back to that. Yeah, but yeah,during the interview process we talk about right, gritty and good, which are sortof like the three indicators to us. It's what we look for in everycandidate, no matter what level, and it's basically bright, is,you know, uncommonly smart, intellectually curious, gritty. We all know right,like manily self, initiated, doing any everything to get it done,to blow your numbers out of the water setting these really high standards and thengood. It is very literally like are you loving? Do you are youin Natel like that? Yeah, do you have a positive allic? I'mlive. Are you honest or you supportive? And so we usually tend to kindof dig deeper and the interview process to see, you know, wheredo you rank those in the importance of who you are and and in yourwork? And it's so interesting because there's no real right answer, but youneed to see how people sort of think through that and even internally it's it'ssomething that we discuss regularly and as we're going through the interview. But that'sthose are kind of what we great people on. Is like, are theybright? Are they gritty? Are they neatly good? Usually they're all innatelygood. So, you know, would...

...hope so. Right. Yeah,yeah, that's awesome. Okay, so going back to you said six monthsago your criteria was different, like tell me more about that. Yeah,you know, I was in a larger corporation, different industry. I waslooking for people that would just come in and do the work and excel andand I was very fortunate. I mean I had a amazing team. Myprevious previous company. But I really find purpose in my work, at leastbuilding others and kind of leveling up their career. Someone took a chance onme years ago and I had no experience and had no business acumen. Rightand six months ago I wanted, like lk, I know, two tothree years of sales experience minimum and bring them in and see if they coulddo it and then we'll figure out where to put them. And now it'svery much how do people think? Do you have that innate drive and passionto do well? And how I provide that tool kit for them to besuccessful. So Volta says has really changed my mindset on profiles and half ofthe team it's their first job, never done sales, didn't know each ohwow, yeah, and they are absolute killers. And then a portion ofthem do have sales experience and just how to learn the industry and they're alsodoing phenomenal so there is no one size fits all. I think that's justtrue for all sellers, inside or build. But yeah, that's usually it's funny. I'm always shocked by how many inside sellers will call me whenever Iam hiring, which, by the way, I am hiring. There you go. Cold calling works, but yeah, and I barely receive any and I'mbaffled by it. I was like, Oh man, I just felt aboutso gritty. Right, you just pick up the phone, like hey, Solim right, yeah, like my numbers online or whatever you're using.Definitely has it writing you, prospect MMM. So, yeah, yeah, Ihope that I answers the question. Yeah, so it sounds like youjust kind of shifted your perspective to like not only how are they going tofit in, but like how am I going to be able to they amplifytheir career and their opportunities here, and sounds like a lot of folks werereally early, early stage in their career and very green, which is excitingand I think there's a lot of fun energy that comes with that. ILove Them. I love them all. So you have like eight in yourinterviews that I you're you're qualifying folks for. They bright, are they gritty orthey good? But do you have an interview question you like to askfolks every time or like something that you're trying to you personally just like thesuss out? Yes, so I got this from a former colleague of mine. She was amazing and she calls it the stress level question. HMM,basically is on a scale of one to ten, how do you handle stress? Okay, so people are usually like, oh, you know, it's it'seither super low on the scale or super high. And Yeah, there'sprobably not a lot of people who are like a five. Yeah, exactin the middle, exactly. And, like I said, there is noreal answer. Mean I look for a specific answer, but I'm going tokeep that tucked away for now. Fair, you can tell your older guards closeto your vest. Yeah, but it gives you kind of inside andhow they think about stress, how they manage it and, you know,being able to manage dress just in general, but especially, you know, witha sales job is so yeah, at a higher growth company where it'slike the stakes are very real. Yeah, it's it's dynamic, it's always moving, it's things will change right when you get comfortable. So I feellike, you know, I definitely don't want to hear one or two tellsme probably just aren't stressed enough to get it done. Yeah, but alsoI want people to take, you know, mental health seriously and obviously that's beena big conversation totally in general. So it's like, you know,how do you manage your stress? And... me through that. And Yeah, that's probably my favorite one because it I think maybe their explanation is whatis really telling to me. And then from there, you know, we'llsee if they're bussing me or not right when they're for sure. And likeon the topic of mental health, I mean for a lot of folks,especially for those Whit's their first job in sales, I mean that's a bighill to climb just from like the mental capecit managing your emotional capacity and theups and downs of the sales job just super important to call out. AndI remember on that topic, I was asked this interview question which, whenthey told me why they ask that, I thought was really interesting. Theysaid, tell me about your worst travel experience, because if somebody's like,oh, they lost my bag and that was the end of my trip,you're like, Oh boy, this is not going to be a good fitfor you. But then you know, if folks are able to describe likewas a total disaster, but fl I cancel, I had to figure itout, but I still had a great time, it's like you'll probably doall right. It's very ambiguous. Great, I actually might use that. Youreally should go for it. Colors when they travel, I will saythat right. Stressful, you're hungry, tired, you're stubborn, your familyand a small, small, confined spaces. Oh, that's good, I'm usingit. Yeah, feel free to use it. And it sounds likegold is already has such a an impact, like really strong culture of like peoplecome in and like everybody's bought into it. But have you gone anywherewhere you felt like you wanted to change the culture or you're having to makeincremental impact to it to make it fit? I don't know, may be moreinclusive or whatever. Oh yeah, definitely I am. I was fortunateenough to lead a couple different teams internationally and it was amazing because you gotto see, you know, how business is done, but also how thepeople are right hmm, and I had a lot of great leaders who werein place that were very in tune with what's going on on the floor,figuratively and literally. But covid I think, was my biggest catalyst of like sortof stepping out of this kind of higher level strategic work and force meto sort of get back to the basics, which is people. Yeah, Ilisten to a lot of sales podcast by. Listen to one early onin the pandemic and obviously was talking about, you know, going remote. Atthe time we were in the office. Then we went remote and how tomaintain the culture. But also they use this Marie and twinet analogy andI don't want to mess it up so I'm not going to say the wholething, but essentially know what I'm sure. So okay, I essentially it's likethe people were saying we're hungry or hungry, were starving and they weretelling her and she said I'll just feed them cake, and it was sortof this lens of sometimes, you know, the higher you get, the morefar removed you are with what really is going on and you can't reallyhelp solution anything. So my team went from being very structured and I don'twant to say militant and a negative way, but you know there's sometimes worried aboutyour head of typeship exactly worried about the performance job security, especially youknow, during the pandemic, and we were trying to kind of move themtowards, you know, thinking a little outside the box understanding they needed totap into their strengths, not only as individuals but really as a team,to help kind of get over the line. So we tried to do a lotof like virtual team building. We did an occasional offsite, not duringthe pandemic but a little bit before and bit after, and we were talkedabout everything. Right, like how you feeling power things happening in the outsideworld impacting you? So obviously covid Blm like it was, you know,a plan things internationally. Really no shortage of stressors, it's true. Yes, and we created this sort of a little family and safe space, andwe never let anything linger for too long. I'm a big proponent of just overcommunica huge general yeah, it's my poor husband. He's like, allright, it's important. Right. So you don't let the mind the lingerfor too long and want under and yeah,...

...especially for sales. I feel likewe're very highly emotional people in general. All the caveat, and not everybody, but yes, so I always say, like it's okay to feela little shitty and sad and angry and whatever, but do not sit init, like do not sit in it. It will just mess up your wholeweek, your month, your corner like feel it, get over it, or work through it rather, and then we move on on to thenext. So right, yeah, although we were part of this sort ofhuge machine, the team felt very cohesive, very small, very familiar, likefamilial. I you know, I still see them to this day,like we'll go, you know, have a drink or do a virtual thing. So Nice. Yeah, I mean it's it was truly a family dynamicand definitely Voltus is the same way, which is great. I love everybodyon the team. So yeah, yeah, and to your point about like makingsure that people don't linger in things, it's so hard to like conflict resolutionwhen you're remote and trying to communicate with like a really serious topic ofresume or the phone is just the worst. I've yes, yeah, we don't. Can Get their feedback, you? I can't. You can only readtheir body language from like their Chin Up. Yeah. So was thereany like instances in which he felt like okay, like here is an exampleof like we were able to work for something really difficult, and here's howI was able to coach my team, because I think the communication piece isso huge to just grow a team. For sure. Oh Yeah, II'm definitely obviously regular oneonon's, of course, and just always kind of being available. But I found that, you know, always leading with metrics,which was sort of my m for years and years and years, which I'ma still a big believer in. It doesn't have to be every meeting right, like literally just asking the questions, like letting them talk, letting themthink through their own solutions, but certainly a I had to personally kind ofswitch my lens and think like, okay, when I was in that seat,did I feel comfortable enough to advise or say this without right? That'ssort of reparations and and so I make it very clear from the get goand I try to be, you know, somewhat vulnerable, like you know,this is what I went through and this is how I overcame it.Or I've been in your shoes and I know what that feels like. Thisis what I did, like talk me through what you want to do.So I feel like the team that I had before in the team now theytend to respond better to that just because, like I said, new were inin their work career and they they just want to be heard. Theywant to feel like what they're doing meaningful and they're not just a number ona leaderboard. So I'm very keen on, like I said, overcommunicating and exceedingperformance. But you know they're not musually exclusive, right. Yeah,you can talk through that and I think it's so easy to focus on,like when you're in that high growth mode of like, okay, the metricswe got, like do we what? How? How far did we exceedour number this month? And that becomes the sole focus and it is reallyeasy and like, whatever your quote, if it's a monthly quart or whatever, just to get caught in that cycle and not take time for breaks orto check in on folks. But it sounds like you got a really goodcadence of just like, you know, making sure that the people who areon the team were okay and like checking in on them and using one onons, not just for pipeline reviews or forecast, which is okay. Like how areyou as a human doing situation? Absolutely, absolutely. I wish Iwould have had that more when I was on the up and up, butfor the most part I have really great leaders. But yeah, sometimes it'sjust even asking how you are will change. Yeah, the whole buyer and itmean it sounds like you yourself. Just you know, you are sobought into this idea of growth mindset and like roll them with the punches andjust existing and thriving and ambiguity. was there like an instance or a seriesof events in your own professional career that you feel taught you that, orhave you always been like that? How did you pick that up? Yeah, yeah, I think it was about... I was the first insideseller at my previous organsize, very much the Guinea pig for everything, rightprocess to night school, and I was first job, well, I guessfirst real big job, and it shaped me in a way that I wasn'tfully aware of until I got older, because I grew to not know anythingelse. So I really enjoyed and thriving, like being the only person and justlike constantly going in uncharted territory. Exactly. Yeah, so that's whereI felt I could make the most impact and I really enjoyed like the dynamic, agile functions of what I was doing. And then, you know, whenstabilize, it's more of like okay, I did that job, like whatnow? What's a new territory or a new rage? Right, soit were forced to as well, because it was like where, like Iget to work, I might want to find things to keep myself busy,ha ha, yeah, exactly, and I'm not one to just stagnate,right. So I yeah, I've always been super comfortable with change and Ithink what I had to really lean into was more of the change management pieceof just like how do I get other people bought it in like this?How do I get them excited for something now? So or, you know, the last of five, six years, when it was going through companies beingbought and acquiring others and merging teams, it was very much just like we'rein it all for one right, or this makes sense and this iswhy. And I think once people understand kind of the holistic view, theyseem more inclined to kind of move towards it, so of just looking downthe tunnel of what's right in front of them. So goes back to overcommunicating. Always totally we I know this the theme of this Podcast, is it? Yeah, we're even like when I'll go ahead. I said, yeah, we got to change the title. We see, Yah, we certainlycan. And even thinking about like building process because as elite, like whenyou're a rep you're right, like you're just constantly and they're like, okay, I'm going to find new things, I'm going to like hold my craft, find all these other things. But as you're building a process, itcould be really tricky to plan for things. I like you just unexpected events orlike changes in the markets. Like how do you think about as theleader of this whole inside sales team, you can only plan for so much. For How do you think about building process or preparing your people so thatwhen things change, because they always do, there's not this feeling of whiplash andthen people feeling just like exhausted from change management? You know what Imean? Yeah, absolutely. I think getting the right people involved early onhelps. So some you know, individual contributors just being part of the process. They turn into sort of the champions for you. HMM. But additionally, it's understood up front like this is something that we're trying to sort outand it's going to be sort of an ongoing refinement. So sort of settingthat precedents up from within, like yeah, this is the minimum viable product.It's going to do you, why and Z and as we have thesead hoc things, will adjust the approach and then, I think once peoplefeel once again empowered to advise, like hey, this isn't working, let'sdo this. I do make sure, though, that side from engineering,right, like we're not testing something or working on something for it to break, like we're not trying to break it, we're trying to test the how itwill help get us to where we're going with what we have. SoI think people tend to push back and, you know, say no more oftenthan yes when they're asked to do something different. So I talked throughlike why, why is this a hard note for you, like how wethought about this, how we considered this, and I sort of I don't wantto say force, but I've for to think about, like I said, bigger picture, like is this really is important for you? Yeah,said a blocker. Is it really going... be an issue, or isit just a small tweak and adjustment that has, you know, huge andvery quick impact? So I think explicit up front expectation setting and then gettingyour champions involved throughout the whole process. Yeah, like I've seen it helpa lot with many tools like sense. Yeah, yeah, I can betricky, right when you're like look, here's the deal, our job isto execute on this plant. T happening, so we got to get on board. Yeah, I like just for any nice way. Yeah, Idon't care how you get there, just get there. This is what I'mgiving you to help you. If you don't use it, you'll see,you'll see it takes a bit longer for you to get to the end zone. So usually we are pretty after a while they're like, okay, thismakes sense and then they can't imagine their life without it. Good deal.Well, that two last questions for you before we close out, and thefirst one is like, okay, so I know you're working on scale,but it looks like, the top of mine, big specific project that you'resuper excited about at work right now. Well, I'm a little biased,but we actually just recently the play outreach sales and folks, I didn't evenask her to say that. Yes, you can send it to my directingmy mouth it is. Yeah, I used it in my previous role.I've I've seen a lot of sales enablement tools and dialers and things like thatand, like I said earlier, building that repeatable sales process is so criticalin startup mode and when you're growing exponentially, just how to replicate a successful repover and over and over and over again, and the rip of timeis much shorter. So I am a big Fan. I've been working onthis for, I guess, the last quarter, my entire skinless, butI'm very excited for that. There's some other kind of business, business andcorporate mission directions that we are going and adjusting, but more to come onthat one. But yeah, so far reasons, is my biggest pride.Enjoy the moment. It's going to be awesome, I'm sure. Yes,and on a personal front, like what's Your Passion Project? Anything you gotcooking for the rest of the year? We're like, this is my itall of your spare time, I'm sure, but this is my what I'm notworking gets mesycked. Yes, so I recently bought a house. Congratulations, thank you, thank you. We moved in in February and we havegutted the entire thing. So whoa. Yeah, time, three minute hour. It's I watched a lot of HGTV DIY Ren. You're doing yourself.I'm doing a portion of it myself, but yeah, it's it's very laborintensive, but I'm learning a lot I'm learning what I'm not good at,MMM, and what I would like to be better at and or just paysomebody else to help out. So my husband and I'm just yeah, we'vedone a lot of home di I have read. Yeah, what's your what'syour forte? Are you demo electrical plumbing? You know, surprisingly enough, demoing? It is so much easier to break things down than to build themup. What I'm here through that. So it's really I thrive. Ithrive smashing seat rock. But yeah, that I would say. That's myfavorite. Think my husband's very he's a network engineer, and so he justyeah, he likes fiddling with electrical and measuring things out and all of that. So, okay, nice, go for it. Go for it,man, where's the hand? You balance each other out. Well, yeah, awesome. Well, thank you so much for a time to day tell. I was a pleasure to chat with you. If folks were listening wouldlike to get in touch with you, what's the best way for them tofind you? Yes, you can find... on linked in, Tallya ESCNDONIAN. You can email me at Teskendonian at boltest DOT COO, and I'm notgoing to give you my phone number. Hopefully somebody looks go to find it, but that you can figure it out. I'm sure, yeah, can findme. Awesome. Well, yes, here it here, folks. Sheis hiring, got an awesome team. Sounds like an incredible culture and ifyou got a growth mindset and look in make an impact on your career, check out bolt. Yeah, all right. Thank this was another episodeof the sales engagement podcast. To help this get in front of more eyesand ears, please leave us a shining five star review. Join US atsales engagementcom for new episodes. Resources in the book on sales engagement. Toget the most out of your sales engagement strategy, make sure to check outoutreached out ioh, the leading sales engagement platform. See you on the nextepisode.

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