We caught up with Tyler, who has recently been hired in-house by his client, after spending some time as a BDR at Bandalier to hear about his experience and advice for others.
What was your educational and work background prior to joining Bandalier?
I graduated from Morehead State University with a Bachelor’s in Sociology in 2011. After that I spent 5 years working at a local AT&T as an assistant manager at a flagship store. I then spent a couple of years working in Hazard, KY at WYMT as a morning director before finally making the move to where I live now. I worked briefly for Verizon as a sales associate but was let go due to cuts when Covid-19 mandates set in. It was at this time that I found Bandalier.
What made you choose Bandalier specifically?
With the advent of Covid, the concept of being able to work remotely enticed me. However after the initial interview with Bandalier, I found that this would not be just another company. The experience I had with the team from that start was nothing but supportive and the training they provided was very in-depth. They provide an environment like none other I have ever been a part of.
Describe what your Bandalier training experience was like?
The training was surprising to say the least. I have taken many “sales trainings” over the years and the ones provided by Bandalier are by far the best I have ever taken. Not only are they informative, but they are also relevant to the world that we currently live in and really assist in helping you understand the nature of remote work and the business development role. Beyond the initial training, the team at Bandalier works tirelessly to continue helping you develop in the role you’re assigned and to assist you with anything at all that you may be struggling with. I really can’t say enough how positive an experience I had with the team at Bandalier.
You were on a few different clients in your time at Bandalier, what did you learn from working on three different client accounts that varied so widely in terms of industry?
I learned that there is not really a “one size fits all” approach that you can take as a BDR. Every company has different needs and pain points that they are trying to solve for and it’s crucial to work with each client to fully understand the specific approach to take when doing outreach. That being said, the “basics” of the role are actually pretty similar across the board and as long as you commit yourself to putting in the work, you will start to see positive results.
Your 3rd account, Zipline, ended up being an awesome match, and you just accepted an offer to move in-house with them. What made that account such a good mutual fit?
The pain point that Zipline solves for is retail centric. I have had years of experience working in the retail industry so I was very quickly able to see the immense benefit that their solution provides and get behind it.
In a few sentences, what is Zipline?
Zipline is a communication and task management platform built by retail, for retail. They have painstakingly developed a platform that streamlines all communication between stores and provides operations teams and store leaders with the insights they need to improve store execution rates and bring clarity to employees’ daily work.
How did you grow while at Bandalier?
I believe that Bandalier has helped me in a number of ways. The one that stands out the most though in regards to the work is the ability to really listen to others. When working remotely, you don’t have the luxury of reading a person’s body language or demeanor. So being able to listen, and I mean really listen, is a skill that I wasn’t even aware I needed to work on. Bandalier helped me to grow this skill and provided feedback on my strengths and weaknesses to really help me improve my overall performance as a BDR.
What has a typical day at Bandalier looked like for you?
Positive. I would start at 8:30 in the morning with a brief meeting with the other members of my team to go over the tasks for that day. After that I had the freedom to perform outreach for my client (i.e calls, emails or LinkedIn activities), or strategize on what my focus needed to be that day. At 11:30, the team would meet again to briefly discuss how the day was going and talk about any pressing matters or upcoming events I should be aware of. After that, depending on the day, I would be allowed to block my time in whatever way I wanted, performing outreach, taking part in weekly trainings, or just working alongside my team members to figure out how to best use my time that day. Sprinkled throughout all of this was also the freedom to take some time to myself to either take care of some things around the house, run a quick errand, or just step away and take a break.
Who do you think Bandalier would be a good fit for?
Honestly, anyone who is looking for something new and different or anyone who is looking to break into B2B sales. The ability to work remotely and be fully autonomous is one thing but Bandalier really provides a working environment that is built around making sure you are able to succeed. I also don’t think you don’t need a background in sales, as long as you are open to training and willing to let yourself learn, Bandalier will provide you with all the tools you need and in a way that is catered to you, regardless of your previous experience. You always have off weekends and the workday ends at 5:00 on the dot. So if you are someone who values your time but also wants to earn a good living and be provided a real opportunity to move up, I can’t think of a better fit than Bandalier.
For a lot of people, a career in sales can be an afterthought. What would you tell somebody who is about to start their career or is considering a career switch about B2B sales and why they should consider it?
I would keep it short and just say that it’s not as difficult as you might think. Just because you don’t have a background in sales, that doesn’t mean it’s not something that you can’t find a rewarding career in. Sales can be a great way to kickstart your career and learn some very valuable skills that you can take with you to whatever job you end up in.
Prior to Bandalier, most of your sales experience was in retail; how do you think your time in retail sales translated over to B2B sales?
Having a background in retail certainly helped me. It provided me with experience talking to people in a professional setting and provided me with the confidence to open a dialog with people to better understand their needs. At the same time, it taught me that there is always room to improve and it’s important to always be working on myself. Both of these things translated well over to B2B sales but the latter I think was the most important because it helped me to understand that B2B, while similar, is a different kind of sales and if I wanted to succeed, I would need to adapt and be willing to learn from my teammates.
If you could give one piece of advice to somebody who is just starting their career in sales, what would it be?
There’s nothing wrong with being uncomfortable. It takes time to learn how to engage with people and how to really listen. Maybe you’ll be lucky and it will come naturally to you but if it doesn’t, that is completely fine and very common. Give it time, learn from your mistakes, and don’t beat yourself up if you have a bad call or interaction. It happens to us all so you’re not alone. Sales is one of the few careers that can really change your position in life. All you have to do is try.