The Razors Edge with Barbara Giamanco|Sales|Social Selling|Marketing|Customer Experience|Technology|Business

If you want to learn from the best minds in B2B sales, marketing, service, and technology, The Razor's Edge podcast is for you. After 25+ years in Sales, Barb understands the challenges that sales leaders and salespeople face. Barb is the co-author of The New Handshake: Sales Meets Social Media and authored the Harvard Business Review article Tweet Me, Friend Me, Make Me Buy. In this podcast, Barb interviews authors, practitioners, and sales, marketing, service, and technology leaders from across the globe who share their expertise on everything from selling and marketing strategies and skills, engaging buyers online with social selling, top trends in technology to drive increases in revenue and pipeline and much more.
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The Razors Edge with Barbara Giamanco|Sales|Social Selling|Marketing|Customer Experience|Technology|Business



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Now displaying: July, 2017
Jul 25, 2017

I talked with Katie Early, a sales leader at HubSpot, about her strategies for leading SDR/BDR teams to consistent sales success. Katie first talked to me about how she got started in a career in sales and what she loves about the profession.

We then talked about:

How Katie made the transition from an individual contributor sales role into a sales leadership role and the surprises she encountered and the lessons she learned.

Katie then shared her guidance for women who’d like to make the same transition into a leadership position.

Successfully leading teams to exceed monthly and annual sales targets on a consistent basis isn't always easy. Katie shared some of her strategies that help her lead her team to ongoing success.

We discussed the importance of hiring right, coaching, ongoing training.

How SDR/BDR roles are important in selling success and Katie's thoughts on how those front-line roles are evolving. 

Katie recently moved into a new leadership role and made a move to Dublin. She told me about her new role and what led her to tackle this new challenge.

Enjoy the interview!

About Katie:

Katie Early leads the Corporate Sales Team for HubSpot in EMEA, focusing on growing the HubSpot's presence with large scale organizations. She started her sales career with HubSpot 6 years ago, where she worked as an individual contributor before moving into Sales Management in North America, and then later moving to the Dublin office for her current role.

Jul 18, 2017

I love this topic because it is a reminder that we are the owners of our plan for work and life! My guest in this segment was Lindsay Zwart, Microsoft General Manager of the US SM&SP National Sales Organization (NSO).

Lindsay is an advocate for women in leadership roles. She told me why that advocacy is so important to her.

We also talked about:

Why Lindsay believes women need to put more emphasis on building their brand and why she believes that it is important for career success.

To be successful, we certainly cannot go it alone. I asked Lindsay to share her advice for networking effectively – inside and outside of any organization where you work.

How Lindsay's international experience has been of value to her working for Microsoft and how she leverages experience that in her career.

Lindsay also shared her suggestions for women to help them identify their next roles and once those roles are identified, how to create a plan to get there.

Finally, we talked about work/life balance because Lindsay is an extremely busy executive, as all the women in this leadership series are. Lindsay talked about how she maintains the balance between work and her home life. Good stuff!

Enjoy the interview!

About Lindsay:

Lindsay Zwart is General Manager of the US SM&SP National Sales Organization (NSO) at Microsoft. Lindsay’s team manages Corporate Accounts Licensing and in SMS&P, Software Asset Management, Sales Excellence and CTM Strategy. Lindsay previously led the U.S. Dynamics Partner, Industry and SMB Sales organization, the Dynamics Country Lead for New Zealand, and led the consulting team within the Microsoft Services organization. Lindsay worked for IBM before joining Microsoft.  She enjoys working in a vibrant, collaborative environment, and is an advocate for supporting women in leadership roles and empowering people through trust and accountability. When not working, Lindsay enjoys time with her husband and two girls, ages 12 and 9, keeping busy with sporting activities and adventures.

Jul 12, 2017

Are today’s buyers really different from the buyers of a few years ago? In many ways, yes and Mary Kay Hauer of MK Associates also shared her perspective on how some things aren't really all that different in today's market.

Questions we tackled include:

The difficulty many sellers have in selling to today's buyers.

Some of the strategies a seller can use to avoid these difficulties.

Ideas on how to best connect with a potential buyer who often ignores salespeople.

How salespeople can increase their win rates if they truly understand the drivers behind why buyer make their buying decisions.

Enjoy the interview!

About Mary Kay:

Mary Kay Hauer of MKH Associates whose personal mission is "Creating passionate salespeople who love their job as much as she does”. When you love what you do, and you are good at it, customers will want to buy from you. Her goal is to transition good people into passionate sales people who help their customers be more successful…and make good money doing just that.

Working with large companies such as Microsoft, HP, Kyocera, Southern California Edison, and Lands’ End to small start-up companies, Mary Kay has helped organizations apply the Solution Selling®  principles, best practices and a framework that develops and enables salespeople to reach success with passion. 

Jul 10, 2017

Want to know how to close more business, more profitably? In this episode, my guest Jeff Koser tells you how to do that by selling to zebras. Not the kind of Zebra you find in a zoo, but the Zebra that is the perfect customer for you.

Jeff and I discussed:

What he means by selling to a Zebra.

How the approach of selling to Zebras came to him when Jeff was working for a company called Baan.

In addition to advocating that sellers stay focused on pursuing business with Zebras aka their ideal prospect, Jeff told me why it is so important to get to the "power" in any organization. 

Most salespeople can rattle off a value proposition but Jeff talked to me about why sellers need to quantify value in a way that they probably haven’t thought about. 

Of course, we talked about the role of CRM and why salespeople often don't like it.

Finally, Jeff shared his advice for salespeople selling in a world that is vastly different from years past.

Enjoy the interview!

About Jeff:

Jeff Koser is the spirited CEO and founder of Selling to Zebras, a sales tools Software company Jeff is an award-winning co-author of Selling to Zebras, HOW to CLOSE 90% of the BUSINESS YOU PURSUE FASTER, MORE EASILY, and MORE PROFITABLY.  In 2010, Jeff was recognized as one of the best sales authors of all time in the book, The Sales Gurus. Jeff has more than thirty years of experience in building businesses, speaking, consulting, executive sales management, business strategy, and business development.

Jul 5, 2017


Hiring the right people with the right skills is critical to sales organizations. In this episode, I talk with Katie Ng-Mak from HubSpot who shares her thoughts on hiring top talent and building a culture of inclusiveness.

As we kicked off, Katie told me what led her into a sales career and what she loves about the profession. She then shared her advice to women in sales who want to move into leadership roles.

According to the research, hiring is a top priority for many sales organizations. You'll hear how Katie believes that hiring right translates into achieving sales results.

We also discussed:

What the ideal sales persona looks like today and how that persona will evolve as we move into the future.

The role diversity and inclusiveness plays in creating a sales team of A-players.

Strategies for sales managers who may discover after hiring someone that they aren’t a fit for the role after all.

The most important thing Katie has learned about hiring top talent.

Enjoy the interview!

About Katie:

Katie Ng-Mak is a Sales Director at HubSpot where she manages a 65-person sales organization and is in charge of the company’s North America channel business. She developed her sales career at HubSpot where she started as a rep 8 years ago before moving on to sales management and sales leadership. Prior to HubSpot, she worked on Wall Street and studied at the Harvard Business School and Columbia University.