Bridget Gleason: Women in Sales Talk Productivity
In this series, we delve into the personal and professional dimension of female thought leaders from the world of high tech sales to explore their views on productivity and sales effectiveness.
Cien connected Bridget Gleason, VP of Sales at Logz.io and manager of the company’s worldwide sales organization. Bridget is well known for sales acceleration, revenue growth and sales operations, as well as accelerating sales for start-up, early stage, and high-growth SaaS and PaaS technology companies. She strives to improve organizational performance and culture and drive operational excellence across a variety of sales motions.
Bridget, where are you from and where do you currently live?
I was born in Dallas, TX, but grew up in Southern California. I currently live in Boston, MA.
How long have you been in sales and what was your first job?
Forever! My first job out of college was in marketing, but my first sales job was selling networking and computers for Xerox. Since then, I have been in sales for the last 20+ years. I love that sales is all about solving problems. Every prospect interaction is a puzzle to be solved.
What factors contributed to your success?
If I had to pick one quality that has contributed to my success, it’s that I am tenacious. I don’t give up very easily.
In your opinion, has sales changed in the last 5 years? If so, how?
Buyers are now better educated, because of the troves of information on the internet. This requires sales people to be more widely knowledgeable about not only the products, but the market in general if they want to add any real value in the sales process.
What are the advantages or disadvantages of being a woman in sales, if any?
I think being a woman has both advantages and disadvantages. I choose to focus on the advantages which I believe start with our natural inclination to empathize. Most women bring a genuine curiosity and interest in the customer, and in the end, that is a tremendous advantage in any sales cycle.
How can sales teams increase their productivity and effectiveness?
I believe sales teams can improve their productivity and effectiveness in three different ways:
- Having a consistent process that everyone follows.
- Training everyone on the same methodology, so all sales people speak the same language.
- Encourage a positive culture in the organization.
Where do you see sales leaders often falling short?
I see leaders falling short when it comes to giving honest and tough feedback. As well as, not holding others accountable, not effectively listening, not modeling a “get things done” work style, and most importantly, assuming rather than inquiring.
What metrics do you recommend sales leaders should track to ensure a highly productive sales team?
KPIs like results (i.e. number of closed won deals), future (i.e. pipeline) and activity (i.e. what is required to get the best results) are very important for growth in a sales team.
How do you see artificial intelligence (AI) impacting the way sales teams work?
AI has the potential to provide information that will benefit both buyers and sellers. By being able to better identify prospects who are a good fit for a particular product/service, sellers will spend less time futilely trying to engage poor prospects. Buyers will become less annoyed with the sales process, because they won’t be receiving solicitations for products/services that aren’t relevant for them.
What advice would you offer to other women to be successful in B2B sales?
Always stay true to yourself.
Is there a particular female sales leader or influencer you admire? And why?
What publications, sites, podcasts or books about sales do you enjoy?
I enjoy listening to podcasts like The Tim Ferriss Show, How I Built This with Guy Raz and 10% Happier with Dan Harris. And I’m a huge fan of books like “Winner Dream” by Bill McDermott, “To Sell is Human” by Daniel Pink, and “The Score Takes Care of Itself” by Bill Walsh.
If you weren’t in B2B sales, what would you be doing professionally?
I would be working in the non-profit sector!
What should the sales community look out for from you in 2018?
I plan to continue my commitment to making sales a great career choice for women.
About Bridget Gleason
Bridget Gleason is the VP of Sales at Logz.io and manages the company’s worldwide sales organization. She was most recently VP of Corporate Sales as well as Executive Advisor at Sumo Logic. Prior to Sumo Logic, she was VP of Worldwide Sales at Yesware and Senior VP of Worldwide Sales at Engine Yard.