Meet Mónica and Michael – They both play an integral role on our sales team at CallRail! Today’s spotlight interview gives an inside glimpse at two sides of our sales team. Mónica Mariño acts as Senior Account Executive, handling demos and helping new customers through implementation, while Michael Hartman makes initial contact with potential customers and sends promising leads to Mónica as an Outbound Sales Representative. We talked to them both about how they work together to generate leads and close sales, and why working at CallRail has made such an impact on their lives.
How long have you worked at CallRail? What drew you to the company?
Michael: Since October 2015. I came from Telnyx and had heard of CallRail while I was working there. I was living in Chicago at the time, and when I moved back to Atlanta, I was looking for a job. In the interview process for another company they told me they didn’t have room to bring me on, but wanted to help me, so they gave me a referral to CallRail. Interviewing with Lance Weatherby, our VP of Sales & Marketing, I got excited about the job because of how he presented the opportunity and made me work for it initially. I liked that challenge and saw how CallRail had the opportunity to take off and grow, and I decided I wanted to be a part of that.
Mónica: My two year work anniversary at CallRail is in July. I was working at an early-stage startup prior to this. CallRail was more advanced in the structure and already had a high demand product which is why I made the decision to join the team. I wanted to get into the startup world and stay in software. I had the opportunity to be the first salesperson to work in the office, grow the sales team, help implement Salesforce, and start structuring best practices.
Talk a little bit about your background, and what led you to get into sales.
Michael: At Telnyx I was doing sales. That was my first career-level job. I previously had experience with sales in high school and college with America’s Mart. I would work for their wholesalers and sell to retailers at their shows. I come from a family of salespeople. My mom is in sales with General Mills. My grandfather was in sales with Kiwi Shoe Polish. So I come from a family history of building relationships with people and selling.
Mónica: Both my parents have business degrees so I always knew I was going to be a salesperson. The fun fact about me is I’m an immigrant and I came to the U.S. not knowing English. I moved from Colombia when I was 10, went to college in Wisconsin, and then moved to Atlanta to pursue my career. I was drawn to software, the city, and startups. I have an outgoing personality and most people that work with me would say that I am focused, direct, and like to take things to the next level. I get my motivation from the fact that I played basketball and other sports growing up. We were D1 champions in college. My competitive nature drives me to always continue to improve in whatever I do.
How do you work together in the day-to-day sales flow at CallRail?
Mónica: I was the first one hired by Lance. So I was the first sales personality in the office, and Michael was the second one who had that kind of bubbly personality that was hired. I worked to train Michael and bring him up to speed initially when he started. Michael outbounds, which means he calls people that aren’t necessarily interested in our product and sees if they would want it. He tries to see if people are interested, then sets them up with me or another sales person and we do a demo and close the account.
Michael: It’s changed over the last year. Originally when I was hired Mónica was my training program. I started handling the 1,200 leads we would get on average per month. We were looking at the various ways marketing brings leads to sales. I assisted Mónica with that, and when she became an Account Executive, I took on the role of qualifying what leads go to her. Now I’m focusing on building out our outbound reach. I still bring her marketing agencies that are prospects. But now I look for new business, especially bigger marketing agencies in the U.S. and Canada. If they fit the parameters we’ve created for Mónica, as an Account Executive to handle, then I’ll push them to her. My role is to sell the conversation and the next step, then the Account Executives will close the account.
How do you motivate yourself and each other to reach your goals at work?
Michael: I work in small bursts. I have found that getting a lot done in a little bit of time and then taking a break works. Knowing that if I work really hard in this increment, then I can take a deep breath motivates me. As we started growing the inbound team, I kind of deemed myself the chief motivation officer. I think that spread to the rest of the team. I tried to help make sure everyone stayed in a good mood. That can get a little draining after awhile, but I just try to come in every day and help people be excited that they’re alive.
Mónica: Early on I learned that sales is a numbers game. You have to know what your goal is every month, and know what you have to do every day to hit those goals. Same with Michael, he knows the ratio of people he needs to call to get a “yes”. When interacting with other CallRail employees, I try to lead by example, not by telling people what to do. I try to model how I allocate my time at this job, and help others with understanding the product.
What’s the most important thing you’re working on right now, and how are you getting it done?
Michael: At this stage with outbound sales, we are working to figure out what it really looks like. We’ve figured out what inbound looks like, but we’re looking at the ROI for outbound. We want to show that outbound can be done and it can bring in a lot of revenue. I look at that as a challenge that we’re trying to figure out as a whole. But I do have a goal to meet every month too, and a number of opportunities I’m trying to arrange.
Mónica: My goal in general is to work on larger accounts. Recently I’ve been focused on trying to land a general marketing company in Atlanta who is using one of our competitors. We’ve had a huge breakthrough with them, and I’m in charge of closing that account. It’s the next level of challenge to focus on enterprise sales.
How do you work together as a team? Were there any challenges you’ve had to overcome together to sync work/communication styles?
Mónica: Michael and I haven’t had that many challenges working together because we mesh well. Early on I told him my communication style, which is very direct. I’m very “here’s what I need, here’s what you need to give me”. Michael recieves that very well, even though he’s not like that himself. When he sees an opportunity he comes to me for feedback and is very receptive.
Michael: My relationship with Mónica and Chris exists to create an opportunity and introduce them to a prospect to whom they’ll give a demo or a call. Sometimes the person doesn’t show and so they pass it back to me so I can try to get them to reschedule or determine next steps. So communication has to be pretty fluid. We usually use Slack, Salesforce, Chatter, or email. When they have a successful demo or call, they have to inform me that they closed so I can track the leads that I’ve passed to them that have become customers and brought in revenue.
What do you spend the most time doing outside of work? How do you prioritize work/life balance?
Michael: It looks different during the week. I spend time with Leah, my wife. We cook dinner, run errands, spend time outside, or catch up on a TV show we like. Typically on the weekends, it’s crazy. We’re in wedding season now. I play hockey so some weekends I’m traveling for that. I play in an ice hockey league locally and an inline hockey team that has games in the Midwest.
Mónica: I’m huge into fitness. With basketball I’ve always been athletic and trained. Post- college I’ve gotten into weight training and high intensity training. I like hiking and being outdoorsy too. In previous jobs I’ve had pre-set hours of 9-5. The nice thing about CallRail is I have flexibility to work at any time I’m available. It relieves the stress of having to get things done in a certain amount of time. I’m able to start working from home at 6am if I want to. I use Salesforce a lot to keep everything organized.
What’s the most interesting place you’ve lived or visited? What do you love about it?
Michael: Chicago. I lived there for a year. I moved there to play on a professional inline hockey team. I knew I had it good in Atlanta and I wanted to go somewhere and learn how to be alone and be ok with it. I’m very extroverted, but I wanted to learn introverted tendencies. I didn’t want to live someone else’s story, I wanted to create my own. I didn’t know where I was going to live initially. I just went and figured it out when I got there.
I also visited Jordan for three weeks. It’s beautiful. I went to Petra, the city that was carved into the rocks. It’s one of the seven wonders of of the world. The food and the people were amazing. You live in America and have perceptions of what people will be like. But I was invited into a mosque, and into people’s homes for food. I went to bachelor party for a stranger. They just invited me and some of my friends in. It had the biggest impact of all the places I’ve visited.
Mónica: For me it was Peru. Before I was living in Atlanta, I quit my corporate job and went to live in Huaraz, Peru for a few months. It was a surreal experience where I was on a mountain at 15,000 feet in elevation. You could feel the difference in lack of oxygen. I worked for a nonprofit that helped women and children in the Andean communities with skills training and education to assist in finding employment. I also worked in the school and taught math.
I traveled to all the big five cities there. I did the Machu Picchu hike. The thing that blew my mind was that I was working with a population that’s virtually extinct. They speak Quechua, which is what the Incas spoke.
What do you think is key to making a company a good place to work, and how do you think CallRail is doing it?
Michael: Right off the bat with CallRail you have unlimited, untracked time off. So as long as you’re getting your work done, you can take the time you need. I think they’ve created that space inside and outside of the office for you to create your own flow as long as you’re meeting your goals and accomplishing the things you’re held accountable for.
Mónica: There aren’t a lot of sales companies that give you flexibility. I came from a corporate job where I had to be there at 7am every day. CallRail operates differently. If you get your work done, you can work from home and no one asks questions. I was able to define my role, cadence and sales process. The virtual aspect of the job, the fact that I have a laptop and work remotely is not common for software sales jobs. I can work remotely and go on a trip to Miami and work from home. That’s a benefit of working in software and tech. People understand you don’t need to be right in the office to do your job.
What do you binge watch on Netflix/read recently that you loved?
Michael: When it first released, The Black List, and now I’m a follower. House of Cards. The One Hundred. The Vampire Diaries, with wine and two large Papa John’s pizzas. This one’s on Hulu, but I binge watched The Last Man on Earth.
Mónica: I’m stuck into Sense 8. It’s very sci-fi based about eight people that are connected in various ways by senses. It’s like Lost, but very complex connections.
The most recent book I’m reading was on the top 10 books referred by Bill Gates. It’s called “Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance. It’s a typical sales book that talks about what you need to have to be successful. If you have grit, you have endurance. I read stuff like that that relates to my work in sales. You can always do more.
What values drive your interactions with customers? How do you ascertain what they need and how you can help them?
Michael: I try to have a good conversation and ask the right questions. With sales, there’s a reason why you have two ears and one mouth. Listening more than I talk is important. Asking the right questions allows me to determine what they need and see what we offer within our solution that addresses that.
Mónica: A lot of our customers know what their problem is and I focus finding the right solution. It’s usually that they need to see into what’s working for their business. So I break down the problem and how we can address it. I take on the role of being of expert. I need to be very knowledgeable in the industry to show prospects that I truly know and understand what they need. Through a demo, I show the capabilities of the platform and then go through the full implementation process. On average I implement 50-75 accounts a month.
Interested in working at CallRail? View our open positions here callrail.com/about/careers/