After moving to Vancouver from a small town on Vancouver Island, business graduate Sally Ngo was eager to find work. Stumbling across a sales position with Vector Marketing, a single-level direct sales company exclusively selling CUTCO knives, she applied, was interviewed, and landed the position. But as a new grad fresh in her 20s, the leap to sales was huge. With no prior sales experience, Sally knew she had a lot of learning ahead of her but was prepared for the challenge.
I was fresh out of post-secondary and I wasn't exactly sure what I wanted to do, she explains, so I thought I'd give it a try. Sally's urge to try eventually led to her success. Today, nearly 11 years later, she's a career sales professional selling CUTCO knives for'you guessed it'Vector Marketing, the company where she got her start years prior.
By in-home appointments, as well as participating in trade and home shows to promote the product, Vector Marketing offers its team members the flexibility to make their own schedules, while maintaining the bottom line: to build relationships and sell CUTCO knives. When I got started in the beginning, I started with my friends and family, she says. I was 20 years old and had no experience, so my friends and family were happy to have me practice with them.
Sally spent her early years with Vector Marketing developing her sales skills, and continually adding to her list of clients. After branching away from the friends and family who took the time to listen to her sales presentations earlier on, Sally learned how to get client referrals and build on her existing network.
To help develop her client base, Vector Marketing provided an approach and training that helped to eliminate any nerves. I wanted to practice my presentation with as many people as possible, so they were happy to refer me to some neighbours, coworkers, or friends who wouldn't mind helping me out by seeing the presentation, she says. There's little to no pressure because we get paid anyways, and I really believed in that business model.
The answer for Sally is simple: mentorship and perseverance. For her, she made the decision to build a mentoring relationship with one of the top representatives in her office at the time. When I was new, she was one of the top producing people, and now we're working together as partners 10 years later.
Always looking for a challenge, Sally says another contributor to her success is her commitment to never giving up. Not really knowing what's going to happen is more exciting than just having a set routine every day where I show up to work and then leave work, she says. CUTCO teaches us how to set goals and how to think big.
Sally has since taken on a new role at Vector Marketing, in addition to her long-standing sales position. Two years ago, she started as a closing gift consultant with two of her colleagues'one of them being her mentor'and works closely with realtors and mortgage brokers in the real estate industry to supply CUTCO as gifts.
We've branded ourselves and we're really running it like our own business, says Sally. Our goal is to become the million dollar team and sell $1 million worth of knives.
While she's accustomed to the residential side of selling, Sally explains that selling on the corporate level, B2B, is much different. I really enjoy the public speaking, the challenge, and it's definitely more of an aggressive environment. You're dealing with CEOs, executives, and business owners, so I just really enjoy the next-level challenge.
And the opportunity for that next-level challenge is attributed to the baby steps it took to get there. For new sales reps, Sally advises to use the resources available and follow Vector's elite training program. It all takes little steps, she adds. Oftentimes when we're new, we try to jump the gun too fast, but follow CUTCO's program step-by-step. As long as a new rep follows the program, they're going to do great.