Shift happens: the emergence of the new sales person

Lindsey Armstrong, a highly successful business and sales leader, discusses why the role of the salesperson has so dramatically altered since the start of the pandemic, and what this means for the future of B2B selling. 

In one of our more recent Agents of Change episodes, Chief Revenue Officer, Paul Mackender, sat down with senior business leader, Lindsey Armstrong, to discuss the role of the sales person in the ever shifting, pandemic-affected world of B2B marketing. 

With over 20 years of experience, and holding global leadership roles at some of the world’s most respected technology brands, Lindsey offers a unique perspective on this topical matter. 

The pace of the last year and a half has been a swiftly moving one. When asked about this, and how it affected sales in particular, Lindsey commented the sales trends that were in motion had only been accelerated by the pandemic. She identified two big changes that had occurred as a result: remote enterprise selling and how this has ended this image of salespeople as ‘road warriors’, and the changing role of company headquarters.

She also touched on how the buying cycle has evolved. She discussed it as drifting towards a more collaborative process, and how the idea of getting to the decision maker has now dissolved. To her, the challenge posed by this dissolution that affects sales people most is that buying is changing, not selling, and how sales people approach the customers is changing into more of a consultative model. She looked at the role of the sales manager as an example of this, and discussed the challenge of trying to arbitrate these nonlinear customer journeys within a very linear environment. 

When asked about what the archetype of the successful sales rep could look like today, Lindsey said that the democratization of the web has turned this role into one that focuses on helping the buyer make the right decisions. She closed the discussion by noting that it is all about figuring out where to place and interact with the buyer within their journey, rather than placing them where we wish they were, as sellers. 

Thank you Lindsey for such an interesting, and topical, discussion. To listen to the conversation in full, watch the video here.

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