I do Business Development in all things Digital Transformation.
I sell professional services which create solutions or knowledge in problem spaces that are not well known using technology, new paradigms in organisational design and user/client/target audience centricity in multidisciplinary and interorganisational teams.
The two most enjoyable things to do in this context are both connected to “working with other people”:
I really LOVE sitting together with people way smarter than me to come up with new solutions, approaches or ideas for interesting problems.
I absolutely THRIVE getting other people on board with those solutions, approaches or ideas.
This is where my superpower is - finding a spark and kindling it together with a team. Luckily this is also what I enjoy doing - it creates energy for me, it does not cost me anything. And it lends itself well enough to selling complex products or services.
I am not the stereotypical sales guy - I am not driven by pure bottom line impact, personal bonuses or the number of calls I did on any given day. I DO think that this is perceived by clients too, and they seem to appreciate it. I need to believe in a product or idea - as soon as I do it comes naturally to me to “sell it”. After all it IS great, just stating the facts here.
Obviously there are other tasks that I do that are part of a sales process - good tasks, important tasks, tasks that can not be ignored. They tend to be net-zero or negative in energy costs for me though. I don’t really enjoy poring over fine-print contract terms, cleaning up CRM data or creating & sending invoices.
I am also way more interested in doing than in planning - yes, one needs a strategy as a guideline. But it is too easy to over-strategize and under-do. I also know that culture eats strategy every single time. As soon as the culture is in place the strategy tends to come somewhat naturally. I also make a clear distinction to tactics - they are absolutely crucial and fun to create and implement.
That said, here is a somewhat complete list of things that I know how to do:
Pitching - Preparation and execution of memorable and impactful F2F sessions that create pull.
CRMing - Data Entry, Setup, Processes & Structure, Internal Selling & Coaching, Documentation.
Proposals - Creation of thorough, emotional and clear descriptions of solutions, approaches and/or ideas as well as the framework for buying them.
Lead Generation - Identifying organisations or people potentially interested in my offering to find and pursue interesting opportunities.
Staying current and ahead - Keeping up with trends, disruptions and other change drivers within a client organisation and/or industry.
Key Account Management - Cross-Selling and Up-selling in client organisations utilizing established relationships.
BizDevStrategy - Long term planning for entering new markets, broadening or reshaping the offering or widening/changing the customer base.
Relationship Building - Creating meaningful, positive and trustful connections to parterns, clients, team members or other stakeholders.
Lately I applied those skills at the following amazing places:
Business Director at Futurice
Established agency, nordic roots, ~850 people, professional services, global reach, pioneering Lean Service Creation and its industry specific derivates, focus on culture.
Head of Sales at Berlin Distillery
Startup, small team, artisanal craft products, focus on DACH market, traditional and fragmented market, bootstrapping.
Head of Business Development at MVPFactory
Scaleup, core team of >20 people, professional services, global reach, one of the first German organisations focusing on nearshoring teams.
And here are some other things I did that taught me something:
- SCRUM Alliance CSM
- Hyper Island Master Class on Digital Transformation
- Miller Heiman Strategic Selling
- Barkeeper in several bars in Berlin Mitte & Friedrichshain
- Enrolled at TU Berlin in Theoretical Computer Science, successfully recruited out of my ongoing studies, never finished
- Outdoor Marketer for several brands & publications
- Graduated High School via “Zweitem Bildungsweg”/ adult education
- Web Designer (hey, thats what we called it) for small enterprises
- Apprenticeship at the BVG, sucessfully graduated as Energy & Electronics Technician
Do you want to know more? Hard agreement or disagreement on anything? Reach out, let’s chat over a coffee!