Sales – they’re what makes the business go ‘round. But it takes more than just high style, high quality products to build the bottom-line. It takes a team of stellar people who build valuable relationships with clients. They’re the front-line. Trusted and relied upon. How do they do it? We went straight to the top for the answer.
Say hello to Cameron Grimsley, Bentley’s 2015 Account Executive of the Year. Cameron joined Bentley just two years ago (he was our Rookie of the Year in 2014), but he’s been working in the industry for a decade. And actually, he was born and raised in it too. Read on—
1. What was your career path prior to carpet sales/Bentley?
Carpet sales is in my DNA. It’s a passion and livelihood that’s been in my family for generations and still is. My grandparents owned a commercial flooring shop; it was the first in Orange County, Calif. Technically, I’ve been in the business for 10 years but it’s been a part of my life for as long as I can remember.
2. What do you believe is key to your success?
Three things: an innovative carpet mill; top-notch service, and relationships. Great products are first and foremost. Cutting-edge design, color technology and a reputation for performance gets you in the door. But without a commitment to service, you won’t get much further. And it always comes back to relationships. You have to value your connections. People do business with people.
3. What is your approach to sales and relationships?
Listen. Be 100% honest. Deliver product that performs. It’s that easy – and that hard.
4. How have you grown personally/professionally since your first years as an account executive?
I have great mentors and lots of guidance. I must say though, I’ve grown more in the last two years with Bentley than in the previous five. In part, I attribute this to being local. I’m close to the mill and I visit often. I see the process first-hand and really understand how the products are designed and made. I talk to the people who have their hands in the process. We figure out challenges together.
5. What do you love most about working for Bentley? Why?
It may sound cliché, but it’s the people I love most. Everyone at Bentley really cares. They rely on each other. Innovate together, problem-solve together. It’s what makes a company fun – but it’s also what makes a business thrive.
6. What is your advice to junior sales executives striving to do great things?
It takes time. Honestly, I struggled for several years. Then one day things just started to make sense and I began to find my rhythm. It didn’t happen overnight. It took tons of patience and perseverance. And don’t forget, relationships are key… people do business with people.