Looking for some career advice

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New Cat
New Cat's picture
Last seen: 1 day 9 hours ago
Joined: 17/04/2014

Sounds a great opportunity if it comes your way. The only thing I'd add is that it appears you work for a bank? I left for the Fin Tech sector, 2 1/2 years ago and could never look back or go back! Might be worth just taking a look outside those 4 walls...

Last seen: 16 hours 30 min ago
Joined: 27/09/2014

I thought some bullet points may help - not that I have any knowledge of the IT world.

Self Employed Company Director since I was 26years Old.

Chartered Building Surveyor

Property Maintenance Company - Property Development until 2008 - guess what happened.

Started Selling Helmets, Exhausts and Suspension in 2010.

2020 now working on high-performance sports racing cars, BTCC, and all things suspension.

Some say I sell sand to North African residents.

Hows that for career change.


It is the enthusiasm that comes from knowledge and being able to say YES.  I very often say yes and think how later.  Doesn't always work but most of the time it does.


Golf Juliet Tango
Last seen: 7 hours 1 min ago
Joined: 17/04/2014

As an outsider, I would say that the comment about how supportive those who manage or appoint you will be.  If you trust them to be helpful & positive then it is an opportunity to be taken.  If you have doubts about their attitude or patience as you adjust then it may not.  You will have seen how they act in your years of employment.  How did they behave as you shifgted from the UK to the US?


Democratic dissent is not disloyalty, it is a positive civic duty

YoSDeNS AR's picture
Last seen: 14 hours 49 min ago
Joined: 05/12/2014

If you go for it then you need to have considered your 'plan B' beforehand.  If you go for it and get it - excellent.  If you go for it and don't get it then don't underestimate how corrosive that can be to self-esteem.  It may make you dissatisfied with your current post.  I would talk to an agency, possibly without actually asking them to put you on their books, to see what other opportunities are out there - making sure they are aware of your age and skill set.  Why not get asked to go on the books now - because agencies have history of putting people's details to the company they already work for - which can be embarrassing.  If it looks like there are other opportunities out there then that will change your attitude to applying for the new role.

Alan Bowler
Last seen: 7 hours 7 min ago
Joined: 17/04/2014

I strongly agree with the points made on techies being vital for sales. In previous IT companies the very best techies, sometimes pure geeks with, ahem, not much in the way of "social skills" worked in "pre sales" as that was the way to make sales. The balance of a good salesman who knew his limitations talking to the cheque signers and a VERY knowledgable techy able to demo, run a POC and answer EVERY question with confidence would work well. This was well beyond the regular (yawn) powerpoint pitch. 

Go for it.

abbot's picture
Last seen: 8 hours 40 min ago
Joined: 17/04/2014

Alan has made the point I was about to make.  There is a big difference between very good technical people who have polished communication skills and some one who knows their stuff but cannot project enthusiasm.  That is something that you should push to get training on.   It is very valuable even for well experienced sales proffessionals.  It will give you the confidence to handle situations that suddenly change in direction.  Not sure how your company is structured but be wary that a sales invironement can be strewn with unreasonable or impossible targets that must be met. That will incease in current market conditions.

Go for it and enjoy 

JonT's picture
Last seen: 14 hours 23 min ago
Joined: 07/05/2019

Everyone knows that if the sale goes through it's because of the brilliance of the salesperson, but if it doesn't it's because engineering built the wrong product Rofl

Blokko's picture
Last seen: 2 hours 14 min ago
Joined: 17/04/2014

Thanks for all the comments, feedback and advice on here and via other means of communication.

I submitted my latest CV to HR this morning and the hiring manager and his boss are going to consider my application.

As well as this role in the Marketing department, I spoke to the head of Sales today, who is interested in offering me a technical presales role - this would be something for Q1/Q2 2021.

I've also had the job description for a CX (Customer Experience) role.  This is partly a commercial role (getting license renewals, additional users, additional modules, additional professional services consultancy) and partly customer services / relationship management.  We follow the LAER customer engagement model, and this role is a bit about Adopt and Renew, but is mostly about Expand.

So, at least three roles for me to ponder over.  I already do some of the presales and CX tasks in my current role so in some ways one of these positions would be an easier jump than the Go To Market role I originally wrote about here.  The GTM position is of most interest right now simply because it is more of a step away from what I'm doing now and hence a bigger challenge.

Picking up on some of the comments -

Alastair - agree, translating the message is so important.  For years in the early days of the product we sold only to the techies.  We won every deal where the guys with pen marks on their shirt pockets were making the decisions.  When the people with the Apple Macs were making the decisions (the Marketing dept) we more often than not lost the deal.  Took us a while to sort that one out :-)

Jon - Shall definitely be getting some training if I get the role.  One of the appeals of the GTM role is that it greatly expands the number of jobs I can apply for in the future (if needed).  What I do right now is very niche - the market for our offering is quite small and specialized.

Mike - I have stayed at the same place in the same role for far too long so I totally agree with your point about the CV being reinvigorated by such a move.  This new product is not for you - I'll drop you a note to explain more.

Tim - yes, career progression is one of the key reasons I'm interested here.  This role would make me very visible to senior managers and the board.

New Cat - I work for a software vendor who supplies products and services to wealth / asset managers, so in the same sort of space as Banking, but not quite the same.  Client Reporting has proven to be very very resilient over the years - our Clients still spend money on marketing in the bad years as well as the good.  It's just that the emphasis turns to Client retention rather than building new business when the going gets tough in the economy.

Simon - sounds like the Branston approach.  Yes first, work out the details later.  Glad to hear that business is doing well.  I remember a discussion with you years ago when you were still in property.

Stephen - Interesting about management.  I'm getting mixed messages from my sources about how good this team are to work for.  Ulterior motives could be in play in terms of what people are telling me - my current boss is telling me to go for one of the other roles.  All of the management has changed since I moved from the UK to the US.

Phil / Chris - yep, I have those other 2 roles and the possibility of some new stuff coming into play next year in my current department.  If all else fails, I could go and work for a Client who runs our system or one of the various consultancies around the country who also work in this space.  Would prefer to stay in the current org if possible but good to have other options as well if needed.

Abbot - yeah, moving into somewhere that has individual sales targets is something new to me.  The sales director is known for tough targets and hire and fire, but the sales guys tell me that if you work hard and do the right things, that counts more than actually hitting your numbers (within reason).

Proud poster of mindless drivel on BlatChat since 2006.  

tim holyoake
tim holyoake's picture
Last seen: 9 hours 35 min ago
Joined: 17/05/2016

Hi Steve,

I made a similar jump from the coding and development world at a software company to pre-sales in the mid 1990s ... and I'm still enjoying the challenge 25 years on! These days I spend my time working with clients helping them put together their investment/business cases after my more technical pre-sales and sales colleagues have convinced them (well, almost) that an investment in our stuff would make sense for their business.

If you want to have a general chat about the joys and woes of pre-sales at a software company (I've worked for 5 different ones in this role since the mid-90s) then ping me a PM and we can talk.

Otherwise, all the best with your interviews!