Chris Hays is Not a Stereotypical Salesman

Chris Hays is the COO and president at ZoomInfo, however as a result of he isn’t the stereotypical salesperson, it took him some time to hit his stride. As an introvert, he struggled with the expectation that salespeople are outgoing and gregarious. However because the gross sales course of turned extra of a science, he was in a position discover a groove. On this week’s episode, Chris talks about how gross sales has modified over time, and a deal that received far more private than he thought it might.

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Stephanie Tonneson: Chris Hays is the COO and President at ZoomInfo, however as a result of he isn’t the stereotypical salesperson, it took him some time to hit a stride.

Chris Hays: Prefer it took gross sales, shifting to a extra science operational piece for me to have the ability to discover a groove in gross sales that allowed me to get to the place I’m.

Stephanie Tonneson: On this week’s episode, Chris talks about how gross sales has modified over time.

Chris Hays: So I feel we gained velocity and velocity, however we misplaced a few of that intimacy of being in the identical room.

Stephanie Tonneson: A deal that received far more private than he thought it might.

Chris Hays: There was so much at stake there.

Stephanie Tonneson: And the endurance that helped him win it.

Chris Hays: I confirmed up and handled it prefer it was a$600,000 deal.

Stephanie Tonneson: That, and extra on this week’s episode of Fairly Massive Deal. So yeah, that’s just about it. So, if you wish to begin me off with the way you first received into gross sales.

Chris Hays: Once I graduated from faculty, I graduated out of SUNY, Albany. And on the time, it was a reasonably dangerous recession. So popping out of faculty, there wasn’t loads of alternatives on the market. So I labored building by way of faculty and I labored a 12 months after and I received a chance to get my first gross sales job. It was really promoting termite inspections for Terminix. I did that for a couple of 12 months. After which from there, I used to be in a position to transfer over to promoting pagers, which most individuals don’t even bear in mind what pagers are. After which from that gig, I ended up getting a job with AT& T. And it was earlier than AT&T, the landline and the gear firm divested. And that was a pivotal second. That was an enormous job for me, an enormous step ahead. I went from making fairly small cash to creating a good dwelling and a chance to… I used to be with AT& T up till I left and began a enterprise with my brother in Buffalo, New York. It was a reasonably profitable profession and a reasonably profitable consequence.

Stephanie Tonneson: Okay. So is that the place you have been, when the deal you’re going to speak about befell?

Chris Hays: Yep. Really, I used to be working in Syracuse, New York. I used to be promoting on the time PBXs and key programs, which have been telephone programs for companies. And loads of that on the time, that was a discipline gross sales job. You have been bodily occurring website, you have been assembly with individuals. It was very old skool.

Stephanie Tonneson: Fairly totally different than what you do at this time.

Chris Hays: Yeah. It’s humorous. And one of many issues that you simply don’t have, otherwise you don’t expertise anymore as a vendor is the bodily act of sliding a contract throughout the desk and really having any individual commit and signal the deal proper there in entrance of you. Now, it’s simply ship a DocuSign. It’s a reasonably steely second while you slide the settlement throughout and the individual’s received a pen they usually’ve received to signal it. Gross sales has misplaced that, however I imply, it’s gained much more than it’s misplaced.

Stephanie Tonneson: Like what?

Chris Hays: I imply, we’ve received velocity now. So like all of the outdated analog issues, me touring an hour and a half to get to at least one appointment, now, I can sit in an workplace, a front room, a resort room and canopy far more floor and transfer issues alongside so much faster. So I feel we gained velocity and velocity, however we misplaced a few of that intimacy of being in the identical room. And like whoever speaks first loses that kind of old skool stuff. That may be a little bit misplaced within the digital world.

Stephanie Tonneson: Just a little little bit of just like the human side of gross sales.

Chris Hays: Yeah. Yeah. And I feel gross sales is best for it. I imply, I feel like for me, the best way that I function and the best way the individual that I’m, I’m not the outgoing, gregarious salesperson. I’m fairly low key. I’m what I might think about to be an operator. And 15 years in the past, that’s not what gross sales was. Gross sales was the gregarious, the one that would go and play golf and that sort of issues that’s stereotypical stuff. And whereas I used to be a profitable salesperson in an surroundings like that, I don’t I might’ve been a profitable of a gross sales chief. Prefer it took gross sales, shifting to a extra science operational piece for me to have the ability to discover a groove in gross sales that allowed me to get to the place I’m.

Stephanie Tonneson: Would you think about your self an introvert?

Chris Hays: Yeah. I’m undoubtedly not a outgoing individual.

Stephanie Tonneson: How do you employ that to your benefit?

Chris Hays: That’s an excellent query. I don’t know that if I really use it to my benefit. I feel it permits me to hear higher to be current within the second. I suppose that’s in all probability the best way that I might take into consideration that it really works to my benefit.

Stephanie Tonneson: I might say that’s an enormous benefit in gross sales. Isn’t gross sales largely about listening?

Chris Hays: Yeah. Gross sales is generally about listening, understanding. Yeah, for positive.

Stephanie Tonneson: How lengthy had you been in gross sales when this deal befell?

Chris Hays: It was about 5 years, I imply, 5 years on the Lucent- AT& T gig. And earlier than that, three extra years in gross sales. So, a complete of eight years.

Stephanie Tonneson: Okay. So inform me what occurred.

Chris Hays: Yeah. It’s an fascinating story due to the result right here. Elite got here in for a corporation in Syracuse, New York known as Syracuse Provide. And I received the chance to go in and speak to the CIO there, Pat Franz and talked to her about what she was attempting to do. And on the time, I feel I had about 15 branches. So with the ability to join all of these places and permit them to have a greater communication car, each extra environment friendly and less expensive was finally her imaginative and prescient. I used to be lucky sufficient to be technical sufficient to carry up and have that dialog along with her. There was a brand new know-how, it was known as Body Relay on the time. It’s really come and gone, however then it was fairly leading edge. A part of getting individuals snug with this with a brand new know-how is knowing the advantages, explaining it. Like I needed to meet with their govt group and speak about Body Relay in a means that made it from sophisticated and technical to a means that they might perceive it and perceive the worth of their enterprise. So being in entrance of them and presenting to her CFO, Mark on the time about why this wasn’t going to be dangerous and why this know-how was really going to have the ability to ship on this was sort of a turning level. To get him snug, that we knew what we have been doing, that the know-how whereas new was examined and it might ship the result, that was a turning level within the transaction.

Stephanie Tonneson: Have been you nervous?

Chris Hays: I’m all the time nervous.

Stephanie Tonneson: Actually?

Chris Hays: Yeah. At all times. You’re not all the time nervous?

Stephanie Tonneson: Nonetheless at this time?

Chris Hays: On daily basis.

Stephanie Tonneson: No, I’m all the time nervous. But it surely’s humorous, as a result of I really feel like I ask salespeople that query so much and lots of people are like,” No.” And I’m like,” How are you going to not?” You assume they’re mendacity?

Chris Hays: I imply, while you’re entering into and also you’re negotiating and also you’re sharing with individuals, I imply, you get nervous. You’re nervous that possibly you’re not saying the correct factor. Perhaps you’re not listening to it. I suppose, I simply fear about all the pieces. It retains an edge on for me.

Stephanie Tonneson: Yeah, me too. I do really feel like I carry out higher. I do higher when I’ve that nerve.

Chris Hays: Yeah. Once I’m taking part in from behind, I really feel like I’m taking part in one of the best.

Stephanie Tonneson: So that you current to the CIO and the CFO. They’re each on board at this level. After which what occurs subsequent?

Chris Hays: So at this time limit, the deal’s kind of finished. Now we’ve received to go and present how we’re going to roll these items out and the way we’re going to make these connections occur. That chance over the course of seven months, grew from$ 10,000 to a bit of bit over$ 800,000 transaction, which for me was a extremely sizable transaction.

Stephanie Tonneson: So was that the largest deal you’d signed at that time?

Chris Hays: Largest deal I signed. Yeah. That was the largest one.

Stephanie Tonneson: Yeah, huge win.

Chris Hays: It was an enormous win. Yeah. It was an enormous win.

Stephanie Tonneson: So what was the result of the story?

Chris Hays: Properly, so that is an fascinating one. That is possibly going to make individuals assume I’m not nearly as good of a salesman, which is ok. So the factor about this story is Pat Franz is now Patty Hays. In order we have been transacting this deal, we began to get to know one another a bit of bit higher. After which we ended up doing… They’d a charity occasion that they have been sponsoring for the Boy Scouts of America. And I purchased tickets to that to go. I feel it was on the Provider Dome for Syracuse College. So we purchased a desk there and it was like this type of transition from we’re very skilled, we’d all the time been very skilled to now, we’re like in our first actual social scenario. That opened up a door for us to truly begin courting. We’ve been married now for 20 years.

Stephanie Tonneson: Wow.

Chris Hays: I received loads of shit for that after the very fact like,” Hays will do something for a sale. Take a look at this, what Hays did.” It was a joke for a couple of 12 months at Lucent on the time. So actually good consequence.

Stephanie Tonneson: That’s wonderful.

Chris Hays: Yeah.

Stephanie Tonneson: That’s wonderful. However no one can assume that you simply’re not nearly as good of a salesman for it as a result of that may solely occur as soon as.

Chris Hays: Yeah. You solely received that bullet to fireplace one time. That’s true.

Stephanie Tonneson: So what’s it about you as a salesman that you simply assume led to this consequence?

Chris Hays: I feel the principle factor was simply taking each alternative significantly and displaying up as greatest as you’ll be able to for each alternative. Like I stated, this began off with only a tiny little telephone system in some podunk county. And I confirmed up and handled it prefer it was a$ 600,000 deal. And I feel that made all of the distinction. If I had confirmed up and simply given her a quote for like, right here’s your telephone system, I in all probability would’ve received a$ 10,000 transaction out of it. I in all probability nonetheless would’ve received it, however I might’ve clearly misplaced so much. I might’ve misplaced that transaction and I might need misplaced my spouse. So there was so much at stake there.

Stephanie Tonneson: This episode of Fairly Massive Deal: Tales From the Gross sales Ground featured Chris Hays from ZoomInfo and was produced by me, Stephanie Tonneson. You probably have a fairly large deal you need to inform us about, tell us by writing in to prettybigdeal @ zoominfo. com. In any other case, we’ll see you within the subsequent episode.