Q&A with Carl Ritchie — Business Development Rep at G2

In the latest in a new series of articles, we sat down with Carl Ritchie, BDR at G2, to find out what makes him tick.

Carl Ritchie has been a BDR at G2 since July 2019. We wanted to get to know him better, so we sat down with Carl to get his thoughts on sales, mindset and much more besides. Enjoy.

Sales Confidence — Hey Carl. We all know that working in sales isn’t easy. What do you do to keep a successful mindset when there are so many obstacles in your way?

I think there are two parts to this. One is the mentality, the other is how much graft you put in. I try not to compare myself to colleagues, always starting with the intention of smashing my target/quota and not worrying too much about being number one on the leaderboard — obsessing about this can lead to disappointment.

Next, volume. An “OK” sales rep can have a good quarter with lots of pipelines to work with. The same is true with BDR. An “OK” BDR can have a good quarter if they are doing twice the activity of all other BDRs.

SC — Facing challenges and rejection is part and parcel of being an SDR. Give us your top tips for building resilience.

Know your numbers! — It is easy to take 20 rejections and think you are failing. But, if you’re converting 20% of those (and that is above the expected conversion), you are doing a great job.

Experience persistent success — Once you’ve experienced what it’s like to call all day and get no meetings, then get five in the last hour, you know it will come if you put in the work.

SC — Sales is all about adapting, learning, developing and improving, right? What are the common mistakes and pitfalls SDRs fall into?

Not testing new approaches — One SDR will tell you nothing matters more than maximising your reach, while another will tell you hyper-personalisation is the key. Find the approach that works for your audience. There is no universal answer.

Over-pitching on cold calls — Have a strong reason for calling and let the conversation develop naturally. Cold calling a senior individual without a reason for calling will only anger your prospect.

Bombarding prospects — When I first started I would send email sequences to entire teams and follow-ups within two days. People are busy and bombarding will only annoy people. Send a couple of emails with high value over the space of 7–10 days. If you can’t hook them in two emails, a 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th isn’t going to either.

SC — What would you advise someone who is looking to get into sales but doesn’t know where to start?

Look for:

· A company/mission worth building

· A day to day worth living

· A leader worth following.

SC — If you’re going to make a living out of selling something, you’ve got to know it inside out, right? How did you build your knowledge bank of the industry?

The best way to know your industry is to stand in the shoes of your audience. Attend events, follow thought leaders, speak to colleagues in your company with that role. For me, marketing professionals are my audience and so I speak with my marketing team about new approaches.

SC — What are your top three resources you use to keep ahead of the game? — books, websites, blogs, magazines, podcasts etc.

Books: Let’s get real or let’s not play

Newsletters: FinSME (funding announcements)

Over to you

Thanks to Carl Ritchie for sitting down with us. Now you know how Carl does it, we want to know about you. Leave us a comment to let us know what you think about any of the points he raised.

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