The Best Five Jobs with the Most Growth Potential by 2030

By Elizabeth Mackenzie

Finding a job that you are passionate about and that has a high level of demand in the labor market can be a complex task. However, the economy’s evolution creates new growth opportunities for new fields. The careers in the most strategic areas of the country will mark the development of this decade.

If you are looking for a position with a high salary and a great job outlook to guarantee your financial and professional stability in the coming years, this article is for you. You will find the data you need to know about revenue, market growth, roles, and more in the information below.

The Highest-Paid Careers in this Decade: In Detail

Medical and Health Services Manager

These professionals are essential to strengthen the national health system. Medical managers are the ideal complement to healthcare workers. A medical manager’s role consists of guiding medical procedures and the use of healthcare facilities. In addition, they manage medical information and lead healthcare staff.

Medical managers work in coordination with physicians. Other tasks include: improving the efficiency and quality of healthcare services, developing goals in advancing treatment, and ensuring that medical facilities comply with all applicable laws and regulations.

Sales Engineer

A sales engineer sells complex technological and scientific products to businesses. They need to have great knowledge of the product’s parts and functions and understand the scientific processes that make these products work. Other duties include collaborating with sales teams to identify customer requirements and provide sales support, giving technical presentations, and devising and modifying products to meet customer needs.

Sales engineers specify in technologically and scientifically advanced products. Some work for the companies that design and build these products, while others work for independent firms. 

Logistician


Governments, companies, and e-commerce platforms need logisticians to ensure the smooth flow of merchandise distribution procedures. The main focus of this job is to manage inventories and distribution infrastructure to offer timely delivery to consumers.

Logisticians also manage the product life cycle. These professionals are in charge of directing the distribution and delivery protocol of the products, complying with all quality standards. Other duties include the placement of materials, supplies, products and developing business relationships with suppliers and clients.

Speech-Language Pathologist

A speech-language pathologist has an important social function. This professional helps with speech and language disorders, such as stuttering, in younger children. The consultations and methods from a speech-language pathologist help prevent, assess, diagnose, and treat speech, language, social communication, cognitive-communication, and swallowing disorders in children and adults.

Other key tasks include: assessing levels of speech, language, or swallowing difficulty, identifying treatment options, and creating and implementing an individualized treatment plan that addresses specific functional needs. If you take on this career, you will also teach children and adults how to make sounds, improve their voices, and keep the pace of speech.

Software Engineer

A software engineer is a professional in charge of developing, optimizing, and maintaining digital platforms for companies, personal projects, and clients. Due to the technological revolution, these engineers are required to optimize services and systems. According to BLS, the demand for these workers will increase by 22 percent by 2030, creating more than 180,000 new jobs.

A benefit of this industry’s growth is that anyone in this industry will have a high salary, which according to BLS figures, exceeds $110,000. Due to this high demand, many universities and institutes such as coding bootcamps receive thousands of students prepared to take on tech challenges for the next decade.

Conclusion

Above, we’ve mentioned five of the jobs with the most potential growth in the next decade. Studying one of these careers and eventually landing a job in that industry is an excellent opportunity to grow in the professional market. You will gain financial stability, and in addition, you will learn a lot due to the fact that these occupations contribute to the sustainable functioning of society.

Elizabeth Mackenzie is the founder and CEO of Global PR Associates. Link to her site is here!

Wanted: Sales Executive (Southern US region)

(NAASE is posting this listing for a new Member, NSI. If you are interested in this position, please reach out directly to them.)

Houston Ave, Houston, TX, USA

Employees can work remotely

Full-time

FLSA Status: Exempt

Company Description

Established in 1986, North Star Imaging, Inc. is the domestic leading manufacturer of turn-key 2D Digital X-ray and 3D X-ray Computed Tomography systems for the Industrial Nondestructive Testing industry. In late 2010, NSI was acquired by Illinois Tool Works and became part of ITW’s Test and Measurement segment. ITW is a leading diversified manufacturing company with over 100 years of history and over 800 individual business units. As demand continues to increase both nationally and internationally, NSI now operates in five offices across the globe; Minnesota, California, Massachusetts, United Kingdom and China.

Companies throughout the world rely on NSI’s expertise and equipment to create high quality, efficient and profitable products. Become a key player to our growing success and have the opportunity to excel in a high-tech and advancing industry.

Job Description

The primary function of this role is to consultatively sell value and thoroughly perform discovery to ensure NSI has defined the WIN and value for the client to ensure we maximize our value and advance the sale to close more expeditiously.

  • Effectively utilize Strategic Selling with Perspective and Conceptual Selling with Perspective and utilization of Score card for pipeline management.
  • Actively host and manage the customer experience while in Rogers for Application Study review and visit.
  • Effectively sell in multiple settings; Virtual, in-person (1:1), group setting and to multiple levels within organization.  
  • Produce Annual Sales Plan; provide detailed updates and performance evaluation of results quarterly to NSI leadership team.
  • Set up Sales Action Plan and review with manager for approval before visiting customers.
  • Develop business summary plans for top 10 customers within geography; analyze and present to Sales Leadership (quarterly) and as determined prudent with the customer at minimum annually. (Consultatively) 
  • Up to 80% travel
  • Located preferably in Texas but anywhere in territory is acceptable.
  • Present proposals, negotiate pricing and effectively differentiate NSI product offerings. 
  • Complete all administrative tasks including expense reports, App Study forms, IRF forms, and ITW Training modules. 
  • Through discovery; develop strategic collaborations across customer and up within customer organization.  Work closely with Sales Leadership to ensure NSI is selling upward into customer organizations. 
  • Through thorough discovery, define the value to ensure PRICE becomes minimized and marginalized in the buying journey. 
  • Develop and maintain customer relationships to increase to value and share of customer annual spend. 
  • Map / blueprint geographic territory to mine the gap.  Understand current and historic business.  Identify opportunities for future expansion.  Cross sell components into competitive systems for prospects, customers.  
  • Cross sell complete offering; Equipment, ISG, Service, Training and components.  
  • Achieve targets defined by business segment. (quarterly and annually) 
  • Clear & Concise presentation of customer account with all pertinent info: machine SN’s, ISG work performed (past to present), S&T work performed along with all contract info (start & end dates with pricing)
  • Sell Equipment and or Upgrades
  • Large Components sales (tube, detector, generators)
  • Sell Parts lists based on each system
  • Work hand in hand with inside sales for expedited transactions 
  • Produce Reports of current accounts, Territory Status, and Revenue Targets to ISG, Service, and Equipment Managers.
  • Accurately and Technically fill out Imaging Request Form with all of the customers imaging goals, area of interest, resolution, shipping, etc.)
  • Increase revenue by prospecting and identifying new projects and turning them into sales
  • Work closely with NSI technical experts and our support team to defend or refine NSI’s product offerings and solutions to best meet the needs of our clients
  • Promote and Communicate our offerings to the key customers in our market
  • As a business developer of assigned territory, you will:
    • Identify market business opportunities
    • Execute marketing activities (run seminars, work trade shows, etc.
    • Visit customers, and prospects as a technical and sales expert independently and/or with other Representatives and Distributors.
    • Consistently use and optimize the tools needed to grow sales and monitor sales activity (Quoting, CRM …)
    • Analyze the feedback from the field, market/competitive intelligence, and participate in strategic development
    • Develop the structure in their territory to ensure growth and brand recognition
  • Understand your competition’s strengths, weaknesses, and equipment to differentiate North Star Imaging’s Products and Services to existing and

Qualifications

  • Minimum of 7 years Consultative Selling experience required.
  • Strong Communication skills (speak & listen)
  • Highly organized individual
  • Strong use of communication medias required 
  • Positive attitude
  • Strong comprehension of NSI engineering, software, and advanced mechanical aptitude required.
  • Effective and professional oral and written communication skills
  • Professional demeanor
  • High computer literacy; proficiency with MS Office products, ERP systems and CRM databases
  • Fluent in English
  • Industry Experience preferred.
  • Education: Minimum Bachelor’s Degree, Master’s Degree preferred.

Candidate Requirements:

  • Passing results on both pre-employment drug and background checks (which includes driving record)
  • A valid driver’s license and good driving record is required
  • Must be able to provide proof that you are legally able to work in the United States
     

Additional Information

NSI is an equal opportunity employer. We value our colleagues’ unique perspectives, experiences and ideas and create workplaces where everyone can develop their careers and perform to their full potential. 

As an equal employment opportunity employer, NSI is committed to equal employment opportunity and fair treatment for employees, beginning with the hiring process and continuing through all aspects of the employment relationship. 

All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, national origin, age, disability, protected Veteran status or any other characteristic protected by applicable federal, state, or local laws.  

All of your information will be kept confidential according to EEO guidelines.

Thanks

Best Regards

Lih Fang Chew
Global Sales Director 

“ Think Like the Customer, Work Like the Entrepreneur”

North Star Imaging

19875 S. Diamond Lake Road, Rogers, MN 55374, USA


PHONE +1.612.581.1640 |  TOLL FREE 800.635.8392  |  FAX +1.763.463.5651
lfchew@4nsi.com4nsi.com  |  xrayinspectionservice.com.

Message From the President:

First I would like to thank the North American Association of Sales Engineers (NAASE), for allowing me to serve as President and to be part of an organization that strives to help advance the careers of Sales Engineers and Technical Sellers across all industries.  This organization was founded by long-time Sales Engineer and industry consultant, Ken Lambert.  Ken saw a need to develop a professional trade association that not only connects, but also certifies Sales Engineers across various industries. This is still the primary focus that I intend to keep going along with Ken Lambert our VP, as well as our fantastic diverse advisory board members. 

These past two years have come with many challenges, both professionally as well as in our personal lives.  Considering we are still in a world where it is unknown if we will be able to connect with people face to face or virtually, it has become more important than ever to be part of professional organization to continue to build your professional network, increase your technical aptitude and soft skills, as well as knowledge of the Sales Engineering career.  Throughout 2020 and 2021, the NAASE has received continued positive feedback from our individual members, as well as our corporate members.  As we tend to provide as much knowledge across the industries as we can each week, our members have stated how thankful they have been for the Forum/Webinars we host and sponsor, to help them advance within their careers.

As we move into 2022 and beyond, NAASE will continue to develop and improve certifications that reflect our industry and that are beneficial to our members.  Our members also have access to many discounts across our sponsors page, and we continually add more valuable benefits that our members can take advantage of.  Additionally, we have recently introduced our Registered Sales Engineer Coach page, where professional coaches can be found after their application has been reviewed and approved as a Registered Coach.  If you are looking for personal Sales Engineering/Technical Sales coaching, or would like coaching for your organization, this is the place to check out. 

Finally, several opportunities will be available through 2022 to meet with not only NAASE members, but we routinely work with other industry organizations to broaden the opportunity for our members to network.  NAASE has a wealth of knowledge across its members, leadership and advisory board, and when combined with the networking opportunities we provide monthly, this has helped create solid relationships which have already helped so many. 

For our current and prospective members, I want to assure you that the NAASE Leadership intention, and that of the advisory board, is to continue to grow NAASE with a members-first approach.  We will stay focused on remaining as a benefit to our members, while providing current and future looking educational forums and resources.  I look forward to adding more value to NAASE as President, and invite each of you to stay involved and help others out with a recommendation to join NAASE.

Warm Regards,

Damian Hanna, CSE

President – NAASE

Water the Crops

The Training meeting had ended. Like so many sessions before, it was billed as sales training when in fact it had been product training. Lots of materials had been shared to show the enhancements to the product. There were several shiny new bells and whistles, none of which me or my colleagues had ever been asked for by a customer. We were assured that these new features were in the best interest of the customer and the best part was we could charge for them. What was even greater was we were being told we could earn lots of commission selling them. The trouble with all of this was there was not a shred of tactical sales strategy given to us, to help us with that process. Sound familiar to you?

As I talk to fellow sales professionals across the country, I hear countless stories like this where their organizations confuse Product training with Sales Training. Where they confuse CRM Training with Sales Training. In Product Training, features and benefits are discussed and we know that features tell, and benefits sell, but not alone and by themselves. They usually require an individual to put their spin on the benefit in a way that brings that to life for the customer or prospect. That successful spin might involve a story or an anecdote and should be delivered with enthusiasm and knowledge. This is where tactical sales training comes in, that is separate and distinct from all other trainings that involve salespeople. Just because you involve a salesperson in a training session does not make it a sales training session unless you are talking about how to sell what you are selling.

Thinking more about my career and the sales training I had received, I thought back as to how many sessions I took that were actually conducted by salespeople themselves. The more I thought, the fewer I could recall. The sessions were normally conducted by someone that was from Sales Enablement or Sales Support or the Sales Training Department. These were usually very nice people but had never worked in the field or sold the product they were speaking about. Sure, they could whip up a fancy 25-page presentation with the latest graphics and information, but their trainings never had an ounce of tactical sales strategy. I began to think if this was like this at my former firm, might it be that way at others? And if it is, how many salespeople are starving for Tactical Sales training, that could actually help them sell their products. And do their organizations even know this is an issue?

In the present environment with so many salespeople working from home and via zoom, the traditional “tell all” signs to gauge sales performance are becoming blurred. With fewer and fewer calls currently being conducted in a face to face environment, interaction between salespeople, their leaders and Senior Leaders can be scarce. The pandemic has led to even more pressure on results as clients and prospects retrench and refocus on their bottom lines and examine every item of cost and process to ensure their own survivability. As that happens, what worked for Salespeople in an up economy becomes a struggle for them in an uncertain economy. To further combat these poor sales results, companies across the country cut budgets for items that are considered not business critical and an unnecessary expense. Unfortunately, one of the items first on the chopping block, becomes training. I liken this to a farmer who grows crops, where the price has gone down for his product. Does he stop watering the crop and risk losing it all, or does he water it intelligently, ensuring he has a harvest and can get what the market will bear?

In such uncertain times, businesses in my opinion should consider this the best time to tactically train their salespeople. Just like the farmer who continues to water their crops, continue to feed your salespeople with the tools to harvest the business that is available in their markets. More importantly it is critical to invest in the right training for your specific needs, from the professional that can best provide it. Do everything you can to help your salespeople grow and prosper as opposed to withering and dying on the vine.  When it comes time for the harvest, they will thank you and you will see the results.

Roger McNamara Bio:

Roger is a 25+-year veteran of the Payments Industry, most recently as the Director of Business Development with American Express in the US. He has worked on the largest Acquisition targets for acceptance across multiple Industries and across the globe that include : Airlines, Communications, Technology, Cruise Lines, Entertainment, Fractional Jet, Freight, Government, Healthcare, Insurance, Oil & Gas, Residential Rent, Restaurants, QSR’s, Retail, Services, Supermarkets, Travel, Vehicle Sales,  B2B and Wholesale. Over that time, he has sold more than $200 Billion worth of Card processing and became an expert in Bankcard Interchange and Discount Rates, how they are calculated and what merchant pay to accept Credit and how this is dramatically different from what they believe they pay. He is an expert in Merchant Statement analysis and payment processing and the rules and regulations associated with payments and the associations. Roger has also developed the insight for Merchant Services Salesforces and salesforces in general to be able to better position their products and gain share particularly in B2B. Let him show you how you can too. He can be reached at Guide2Interchange@gmail.com

Meet The Members: Featuring Femi Coker

Now and then NAASE will be featuring one of our Association Members. This week, we did a Q&A with Mr. Femi Coker, a recent Member.

Femi Coker, Regional Technical Sales Engineer

Dangote Cement Plc

1.  How did you go from a Chemical Engineering major and graduate into a technical sales engineer at a manufacturer?

Frankly, I accidentally found myself in the position. I got a lead to apply for the position of Technical Officer through my In-law. Since this was in a manufacturing company and my qualification was an Engineering major, the job function will naturally be at the plant as I didn’t get a chance to see the scope of what I was applying for.I wrote the qualifying exams and went through the interview process.It was after getting the Job that I got to know the scope.I actually wanted a real engineering practice at the cement plant but with time I started enjoying the field aspect of the plant operations.


2. Are sales engineers in high demand currently in Nigeria?  Why/ why not?

I would say NO. The sales Engineering role is still misunderstand largely and taken for sales reps or execs. Some other companies don’t even believe in the role.There was a change in management in my Company and the technical sales department was completely scrapped, during which I was moved to a sales officer position. I worked in this role for a year and half before moving to Marketing then back to Technical Sales.


3. What do you enjoy most about being a SE?

The dynamic nature of technical issues that are experienced on the field. The need for continuous learning. The people part of the Engineering practice.As an Engineering major, I am Introvert. I believe most engineers have this trait. It was quite challenging initially to break the ice of having to talk to people on a first meet and not just one but tens of calls per day but this is one aspect I now enjoy a lot.


4. What do you wish the NAASE could help provide to you?

A family. A chartered body recognized globally for SEs. A channel for growth and a ladder to measure how far or fast one is growing in the field.A body of work that will differentiate ordinary SEs from Chartered.

Sales Engineer Wanted: North Carolina position, with CBC

(The following is a current position available at NAASE Member, Capitol Broadcasting Company / Microspace.)

RALEIGH, NC

Description

We are looking for a highly tech-savvy sales engineer to assist in the selling of complex satellite communication and telecom products and services. The Sales Engineer’s responsibilities include maintaining extensive technical knowledge of Microspace products’ parts, functions, and processes and assisting to close sales where technical expertise may be required to fit the clients’ needs.

To be successful as a sales engineer, you should possess an in-depth knowledge of satcom/telecom technology and services and should be able to relate this knowledge in a way that is understandable to non-technical customers. You should be driven to achieve your sales goals and should have excellent sales, customer service and networking skills.

Sales Engineer Responsibilities:

  • Preparing and developing technical presentations to explain Microspace products or services to customers.
  • Discussing equipment needs and system requirements with clients and engineers.
  • Collaborating with the sales team & engineering department to understand customer requirements and provide support.
  • Generating high-quality sales leads, following up after initial contact, securing and orders, negotiating prices, completing sales, and documenting all steps in CRM.
  • Researching, developing and modifying products to meet customers’ technical requirements and needs.
  • Helping customers who have problems with installed products and recommending improved or upgraded equipment and or services.
  • Soliciting and logging client feedback and evaluating the data to create new sales and marketing strategies to target customers.
  • Identifying areas for improvement and communicating these issues as well as possible solutions to upper management.
  • Setting and achieving sales goals and quotas.
  • Training other members of the sales team on the technical aspects of the company’s products and services.

Sales Engineer Requirements:

  • 4 year Degree in engineering, marketing, business administration, related study or 5-6 years of relevant work experience required.
  • Strong knowledge of satcom and or telecom technology from technical and engineering perspective.
  • Experience in sales and the technology field.
  • Strong communication, interpersonal, customer service, and sales skills.
  • The ability to relate technical information to non-technical customers.
  • Excellent technical and problem-solving skills.
  • Good leadership and team working skills.
  • Willingness to continue your sales and engineering education.
  • Valid DL and clean driving record
  • Reliable transportation
For further information and to Apply, please visit:

https://jobs.jobvite.com/capitolbroadcastingcompany/job/oiJ4gfw5/apply

Or, reach out to:

Na’Tasia Robinson

919-890-6014

nrobinson@capitolbroadcasting.com

The Business Conundrum of Vibrant and Regular Content Creation

It’s clear to most people, and certainly evident on LinkedIn, that “content is king”.   For marketing, sales, and business development, it is typically the #1 means of creating leads and influencing sales, purchase orders, and contracts.  But as many would agree- it is not easy to come by.

Recently engineering.com produced and released a great industry report, titled “2021 Marketing to Engineers Survey”.  The 2 charts below illustrate how important content creation and promotion is- but also shows that for many it is a constant struggle.

Most marketing experts and industry watchdogs believe that the trends over the past few years (regardless of COVID or its aftermath) will continue on into the near future.  How do we market complex or technical products?  Content marketing is shown as the #1 marketing tactic.  Webinars are #2- but it could be shown that creating and broadcasting webinars is essentially also a type of content marketing.

As any avid or regular participant on LinkedIn can tell-  content is everywhere!  There is so much to be consumed, by B2B professionals and buyers.  However, as a company (or an Association like NAASE) it can be hard to always create and have content that is worthy of proper thought leadership.  Writing an advertisement or promotion is pretty easy.  Writing something that people actually want to read and learn from is another.

Creating/ writing content or even sifting through others’ content (be it blog articles, whitepapers, presentations, etc) is a considerable effort.  Ask any marketing director, or CRO.  Personally, I have done a fair amount of freelance industry/technical writing and companies, magazines, and websites seem to ALWAYS be looking for more content.  The truth is that as content marketing becomes even more important- this shortcoming of the quantity of adequate pieces will be even more troublesome.  Who is going to write all of this?

Generally speaking, as a country (USA) I feel that we have become worse writers over time; over the past 20-25 years.  Perhaps some college professors can back me up on that?  Effective business or technical writing seems to be lacking overall.  As a simple anecdote, I recall several years ago when I was mentoring someone who had just graduated with a bachelor’s degree.  He had a major in English Literature and a minor in Creative Writing.  One would think that they would be a pretty darn good writer; better than most that had recently graduated.

In reality- they were not very good and many pieces that they wrote I had to shift and edit considerably.

The point is- as a business concern, content creation can be a challenge, and I believe that issue will become even more evident over the coming years.  Buyers and prospects like to consume good content, so the product/service sellers will need to find a way to provide this to them.  In the immediate future for B2B, I don’t see a likely Plan B or Plan C.

Sales Training – Beyond the Dreaded Role Play

By Roger McNamara

The Difference Between Roleplay Software & Conversation Intelligence
Typical sales training session

Often at the end of a sales training meeting there would be time allocated for role plays with fellow colleagues.  I always dreaded these as I always saw it as a test in artificial conditions to try and test what I was supposed to have learned. I can see folks now breaking off into pairs, spreading out across a conference room in some hotel somewhere. When we started to video tape these and play them back, I would always cringe. The seller would be so staccato in their delivery and the buyer would be unrealistically easy or hard depending on their rank in the organization. If you are in sales no doubt this has a familiar ring to it. In the back of my mind I always felt that this time was more of a time filler for the sales trainer and quite frankly a waste of time for the salespeople. I know there are some who might disagree with this, but nothing substitutes for the live environment, there is nothing like a real sales call to practice and learn.

I have always maintained that sales is an art, not a science. It is more of a personality than anything else. The art of the sale needs to be practiced and the live environment is a fantastic tool for achieving that. If you sell the type of product that is somewhat repetitive, in a short space of time you can hone your skills by making mistakes and learning from them. The repetitive nature of sales and sales calls serves to build confidence, the key ingredient of successful sellers. It stands to reason that the more you do something the better you should get at it. In sales this is particularly true, with reps comes experience and with experience comes higher success rates… for those who chose to learn . For those who do not, it can be a very tough (and very short) career.

Early in my sales career I was accustomed to making 15-20 cold calls a day. 15-20 times a day to practice the pitch, the delivery, the buzz words. I never saw cold calling as painful as it can be a chore. The practice made me better and better every day. Later in my career I might only do 2 sales calls per month and one might think that with less activity would come diminishing skills. During that time, I would seek meetings with internal groups to share sales skills. Unbeknownst to them, they were my practice subjects. It was there in my internal company meetings that I would practice my delivery, pitch, and language. There would always be questions at the end of these sessions that would serve to help me with objection handling and to refine my answers and gain confidence.

Sales training is a very key component of any salesperson’s success. If you are going to take people out of the field and away from their selling time where they earn their living, the training needs to be impactful and meaningful. It needs to be motivational and inspirational, the type that makes salespeople want to run through brick walls to get to their next sale. Too often it is scripted or comprises of the latest fad system when all that is required is a little common sense. Sales training is not product knowledge, but it is often confused with training for salespeople. When a new sales process or rule is put in place or a mandatory field is added to your trusty CRM system, it should not be billed as sales training when the Salesforce gets together. Sales training needs to be tactical, nothing else. 

Professional athletes study video and thus their opposition every day of the season. They learn about the characteristics of their opponent, their tendencies and thus their skill and reactions to make them more successful. Those that embrace this the most and apply their art and talent, cash the biggest checks. Telling these very same athletes that another row of seats has been added to the arena they play in is nice to know but hardly germane to increasing their productivity in play. Sales is the very same.

When was the last time your organization trained and discussed with you your Art? When was the last time you looked at the softer skills that really make your personality more successful? So much can be learned and carried sales call to sales call. What Psychological aspects of the selling process are you missing? What does it mean when your prospects act a certain way? Are you communicating in today’s environment the most effective way with the audience you are trying to reach?  Are you practicing “Salesperson Insanity”? Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result?

Sales by its very nature should not be complicated. You have a need, I have a product, we meet, form a bond, and discuss the value that can be delivered, a product is sold, and a sale is made. At its simplest this is what happens. A commonsensical approach to selling that takes full advantage of your Art form and personality with an emphasis on as many soft skills as possible is the best recipe for success. So, leave the role plays and video cameras at the door……. only sales professionals in here.

Roger McNamara Bio:

Roger is a 25+-year veteran of the Payments Industry, most recently as the Director of Business Development with American Express in the US. He has worked on the largest Acquisition targets for acceptance across multiple Industries and across the globe that include : Airlines, Communications, Technology, Cruise Lines, Entertainment, Fractional Jet, Freight, Government, Healthcare, Insurance, Oil & Gas, Residential Rent, Restaurants, QSR’s, Retail, Services, Supermarkets, Travel, Vehicle Sales,  B2B and Wholesale. Over that time, he has sold more than $200 Billion worth of Card processing and became an expert in Bankcard Interchange and Discount Rates, how they are calculated and what merchant pay to accept Credit and how this is dramatically different from what they believe they pay. He is an expert in Merchant Statement analysis and payment processing and the rules and regulations associated with payments and the associations. Roger has also developed the insight for Merchant Services Salesforces and salesforces in general to be able to better position their products and gain share particularly in B2B. Let him show you how you can too. He can be reached at Guide2Interchange@gmail.com or check out his website https://www.guide2interchange.com/

Industrial Distribution: Who’s doing the selling?

(by Frank Hurtte) Let’s talk about selling.  More specifically, let’s discuss selling technical products – products that possess unique features differentiating them from the competition.

Further, let us define precisely what we mean by selling.  There are several definitions of types of selling.  This example illustrates the two most radically different types of selling:

Further comparing the two types of selling

Distributors specializing in transactional (only) selling generally carry multiple brands of the same product.   This “one-stop shopping” is advertised as a customer convenience; however, this works similarly to Walmart’s approach to selling colas.  When a customer walks into their local mega-center the company does not care if they buy Coke, Pepsi, RC, or some other brand.  Further, this approach also leads to “house brands” like Wally Worlds Sam’s Choice Cola. 

Amazon is another excellent example of transactional selling.  There is no need to walk into a store when you can open your phone or laptop and be instantly connected to Amazon.  Again, if the customer knows what they want, products can be purchased.  And like Walmart, Amazon doesn’t much care which product is selected as long as the purchase comes from Amazon. 

At both Walmart and Amazon, companies are offered opportunities to grow their sales for a fee.  If you happen to sell a generic product, it might work.   For example, at Walmart soft drink makers pay to have their product “featured” as you walk into the store and sometimes pay to offer deep discounts which are used to drive sales and sometimes to talk consumers into making an extra trip.  Similarly, Amazon offers manufacturers/sellers the ability to upgrade their accounts to designate their products as “featured,” thus giving the seller more visibility.

The same rule applies to “commodity-like” products and distributors.  If a customer wants a common product where the brand is not a consideration, they ask for it, sometimes using industry slang, and the customer service representative provides a price and delivery.

When distributors carry multiple brands of a commodity product, the smartest salespeople sell (using a generic form of the word) the brand/product which creates the greatest gross margin.   It is possible for a manufacturer to temporarily increase unit volume by dropping these margins.  The issue becomes, most manufacturers do not carefully calculate the increase necessary to offset the loss in margin.   Further, in time other credible competitors adjust their price making gains difficult.

Who sells the product? 

To answer this question, let’s further break down distributor selling.  Virtually every selling component is described below.  (If you have other points, send them along and we will add them!)

Mostly transaction activities

Advanced transactional activities

Active selling activities

Sales activities cost money for the distributor

Each of these activities costs money.  If the distributor does not provide the activity, then the onus falls onto the manufacturer.  Somebody pays – it’s just a matter of who ends up with the bill.

Sadly, most distributors have done a poor job of tracking the expenses tied to each of these activities.  Based on observations within the study of distributor association profit benchmarking reports, the “active selling” tasks require a gross margin percentage that is approximately 30-32 percent higher than “transactional selling.” 

Contrasting distributor types to see the need for higher margins

In the industrial sector, distributors operating in Electrical Distribution (members of the National Association of Electrical Distributors – NAED) and Automation Distribution (members of the Association for High Tech Distribution – AHTD) often sell to similar customer sets.  The primary difference comes in the types of products sold, with NAED members selling a higher percentage of “commodity-like” products. 

NAED members generally sell more replacement products to End Users in MRO environments.  Many of the transactions involve replacing a component that arrived in their manufacturing facility on a piece of machinery.  The customer usually knows the part number and description of the replacement part.  Even if the product is not a commodity, the selling effort is still largely transactional.

AHTD distributors, who tend to focus on new OEM applications and more technologically complex end-user needs, engage in more active selling.  While they do sell some replacement parts, the majority of their business is focused on active sales.

Profit Benchmarking Reports tell the story

Both AHTD and NAED participate in profit benchmarking.  Data from these indicate the typical gross
margin for an AHTD member is approximately 26 percent while the typical NAED member reports a gross margin hovering around 20 percent. 

Armed with this data, one could expect the bottom-line profitability of AHTD members to be substantially higher than that of NAED members.  However, the reports indicate the profit margin percentages for the groups to be approximately equal, pointing to an increased cost of sales activities.

What this means for manufacturers

Manufacturers must understand the difference between transactional and active selling.  While many manufacturers have created tiered distribution plans with terms like “market makers,” “market servers,” and other types of categorizations, the strategies appear to have failed. 

In a special report generated after nearly 20 in-depth interviews with highly focused active selling distributors, we arrived at these conclusions:

The problem is many times the situation is not black and white – there are hundreds of shades of gray.  Even the previously mentioned companies have salespeople probing into other types of business.  This creates issues.  Here are some problem points made by the distributors interviewed:

If this type of distributor can get an SPA this opens the doors for them to block out the market making distributor.

This is often influenced by field sales and reps who feel like they gain favor with the distributor by offering up the additional margins associated with being a market making distributor.

Large orders do not necessarily qualify a distributor for this role.

It is the role of a procurement department to drive unit price cost to the minimum level.  Opening up the distributor landscape to other distributors typically drives the prices down. 

Citing another recent report on small to midsized distributors in the market, we found many distributors who have become extremely specialized in specific technologies.  These distributors have created a niche by selling a few very focused product groups, mostly to OEMs serving one or two categories. 

These distributors state they must often switch their “active selling” direction because their manufacturing partners allow other distributors to apply margin pressure against them at their accounts.  This is disturbing because this group of distributors is truly creating market expanding services to the manufacture in at least several categories.

Manufacturers with the broadest product lines often fail to realize the specialized activities of this breed of distributor.  The result is extra energies are required of the manufacturer’s team to supplement the efforts of a more general distributor. 

The time is ripe to better understand who is doing the work

This is complicated.  First, product technologies shift.  For example, years ago, variable frequency drives were considered cutting-edge technology, yet today many classes of this product approach “commodity” status.  Second, some distributors fall into the middle ground – actively selling in some instances while transactionally selling in others. 

Further complicating things, manufacturer field sales teams (rep-based, direct employees, and regional managers) are often asked to judge distributor performance without much objective input.  Many bet on larger plays hoping they will ramp up their active selling activities. 

In the case of manufacturers with multiple distributors in the market, the manufacturer’s team probably knows the transactional distributor better than the active seller.  Why?  The active sellers often know the products better or at least as well as the factory salesperson.  And the nature of the sale precludes lots of day-to-day distributor/manufacturer interactions.

Finally

Manufacturers who understand the size and extent of the opportunity to expand market share in new products and technologies find ways to model and mold their channel sales efforts to match their distributor partners.  Strangely, many manufacturers do not fully understand the value of market share on some of their products.  Without this key piece of information, decisions surrounding the cost of sales activities are impossible.  Sad but true…

Frank Hurtte is one of the leading proponents of Knowledge-based distribution. A business should surround the products they sell with their engineering and technical expertise. Even though he is a speaker and consultant, he is first and foremost a Sales Engineer. For more info, please visit: http://thedistributorchannel.blogspot.com/

Inductive Automation Seeking 3 Great Positions-

Inductive Automation, the leader in cutting-edge software for the industrial sector and beyond, is looking to add talented people to our continuously growing team! Our signature product, Ignition, is a powerful integrated development environment with everything you need to create virtually any kind of industrial application – SCADA, IIoT, MES and beyond – all on one platform.

Inductive is a unique, innovative, and fun company with a strong mission: to empower our customers to swiftly turn great ideas into reality by removing all technological and economic obstacles. We have a huge passion for our product and our customers; no matter what role you might play in the company, you can sense that there is something special about what we do and who we are.

Technical Sales Representative

TSR’s work in a territory free sales environment, educating customers and prospective customers on our products.  They identify new opportunities through prospecting, cold calling, lead generation and probing new and existing accounts. 

The perfect candidate is comfortable leading face to face meetings and giving demonstrations in front of large groups. They have a degree or strong background in a technical field like Computer Science, Management Information Systems or Engineering. Most importantly they must be passionate about a cutting edge technology and a forever changing industry.

•           Provide knowledgeable demonstrations of our software, online or in person

•           Manage and grow existing customer accounts

•           Provide first tier of technical support

•           Accumulate a strong technical understanding of our industry

•           Understand customer needs and “close” sales

Applications Engineer

AE’s assist our Sales Engineering division by providing technical solutions for our customers.  They help with technical demonstrations and questions on Ignition projects, and design and maintain systems for ever-expanding company needs.

•           Database and application programming

•           Design and program test scenarios (primarily using Ignition)

•           Technical research and writing RFI/RFP responses

•           Create applications for managing and organizing detailed information

•           Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science/Engineering plus 2-3 years as a developer

•           Strong in programming languages such as Python and Java

  • Working knowledge of Window and Linux and SQL Databases

•           Excellent troubleshooting skills

Sales Engineer

SE’s provide technical demonstrations and education, architectures, and best practices to our end-users and Integrators. They partner with our sales team, creating and executing strategies to grow Ignition sales.

•           Become an SME for technical questions or architecture topics

•           Assist customers with their Ignition bidding processes

•           Ensure customers have the knowledge to succeed with Ignition

•           Participate in conferences and trade-shows

•           Assist with Ignition benchmark testing

•           Build Ignition Exchange resources

Here is a direct link to our Inductive Automation Careers page: Click Here. On the Careers page scroll down to view the available Career Opportunities, this is where you can view Company Divisions or View Open Positions.

If you are interested in the Technical Sales Representative role you can find it under the Sales Division.

If you are interested in the Applications Engineer role you can find it under the Sales Engineering Division.

If you are interested in the Sales Engineer role you can find it under the Sales Engineering Division.

On the bottom of the Careers page you can find Inductive Automation: Unique Benefits, Career Paths, and Company Values. If you have any questions about the jobs posting please email the HR Team at Jobs@inductiveautomation.comor call us at 800-266-7798.

Inductive Automation, LLC is an equal opportunity employer, and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, religion, color, national origin, sex, age, sexual orientation, gender identity, and status as a protected veteran or individual with a disability. Verification of US employment eligibility required.

Link to Inductive Automation website: https://inductiveautomation.com/

(NAASE makes no claims or representations regarding these open positions. All inquires must go through Inductive.)

Featured “Salesfolks” Opportunity: Inside Sales – software developer for staffing services

NAASE will be featuring a job/1099 opportunity on a regular basis that is brought to us by Salesfolks.

Have you heard about Salesfolks? Whether you are an independent sales contractor or just looking to moonlight as a salesperson for a side-hustle, you can find incredible on-demand, remote sales opportunities and make money by generating leads, referrals and signed contracts. Businesses use Salesfolks to cloud-source part or all their sales. Salesfolks is a way to find purpose and get paid by selling products and services on your own terms.  It’s free for salespeople. Signup at salesfolks.com.

Please note that the opportunities listed at SF are a 1099/ independent contractor type of sales/ sales engineering opportunity. Some are potentially full-time, while others are expected to be part-time/ flexible.

Here is an excerpt of this Opportunity:

Revelo: Inside sales – software developer staffing services

Be based in either the USA, Europe or Latin America (Remote position)
Be responsible for the sales cycle from first contact to the signing of the agreement and initial placement of candidates in client companies, using Revelo’s world class delivery technology and team to turbo-charge your work
Act as the main client contact and continue to place more candidates in each company account
Identify, prioritize and engage potential clients from the USA and Europe
Establish and build relationships by demonstrating strong knowledge of our product, the market, technology and recruitment;
Work closely with the team, bring your own ideas and strive for constant improvement.

Average Sale Value= $20,000 Commission rate= 5%

For further details, and to apply- visit: https://salesfolks.com/job/76

(Note: All inquiries and applications need to go through the SF site and portal. NAASE makes no claims or representations.)

Ode to Inside Sales

The inside sales representative is often an unsung hero in many companies, and that is a shame. In many ways they are one of the absolute keys to revenue and the whole sales operation. Sometimes referred to as a different title (sales support, etc), here we will look at the value of ISR’s and also the possibility of converting an ISR to a sales engineer.

The first job I had out of college was as an inside sales rep. I had my Bachelor of Science degree, but this was my first “real” job. The truth is that inside sales is often an entry-level position at many companies- and there is nothing wrong with that. Some people remain as ISR’s their entire career, others manage an inside sales team, and others convert into outside sales/ account managers or possibly to sales engineers. More about that later.

Being quick on your feet, and solving problems

What did I learn in inside sales? Plenty, including:

company culture

product/service knowledge – technical

company structure/ who does what

working alongside an outside/field sales person

customer service

solving client problems / answering questions

quoting & proposals

dealing with our service or product providers

The truth is that all of these skills are needed to become a good sales engineer, or to become an account manager or account executive.

I recall many times throughout my career in outside sales or as a project manager- when I needed my supplier or some material, 85% of the time my first call was to “my” inside sales person at that company. They had the answers. They answered the phone (imagine that!). They got things done quickly. They valued me as a customer. In many cases, the times that I did reach out first to my account manager- all they did was hang up the phone and then call that same inside sales person!

For the company at-large, there is great value in simply engaging constantly with your inside sales team; they speak to more of your customers on a daily or weekly basis than any other position. They know the pain points of many of your clients. They know that the new upgraded widget won’t sell because it is too expensive (10 of you customers have told them so in the past month).

In summary, as a former inside sales rep and one who has relied on the ISR for most of my career, let’s give a virtual round of applause to this very needed, yet sometimes underappreciated, role! (And hiring managers- worth taking a look at these people for sales engineer openings….)