Episode 53: Winning in Sales
Guest: Carmela Elco
This week’s guest came to my attention from a recent list from the National Association of Plan Advisors (NAPA) identifying the top women advisors in the country for 401K or retirement savings. Carmela Elco is the Managing Director and Senior ERISA Consultant with Blue Prairie Group. Originally from a human resources background, Carmela graduated from the University of Pittsburgh and holds an M.A. in Human Resources Management from St. Francis University. Working with retirement plans and 401Ks, Carmela found that she really enjoyed it over other areas of human resources. She transitioned from working in a human resources capacity into a consultant position fairly holistically and has been providing great work for her clients ever since. Carmela is very collaborative and she has a passion for her work. That combined with her dedication to her clients and the industry has helped her stand out as one of the top female advisors of 2015.
Securing the sale of a 401K can take anywhere between one to two years, making the sales process extremely important. Carmela recommends establishing an advocate and build trust with that individual. This is especially important in those competitive situations. By communicating with your advocate, you can ask certain questions including what the committee’s overall concerns are, or what materials others may find beneficial. Also, Carmela recommends understanding the culture of the organization and how they approach their decision making and working with their partners. One way to do this is by reaching out to your network and finding those connections.
If you’re interested in learning more about the art of sales, be sure to read Pitch Anything: An Innovative Method for Presenting, Persuading, and Winning the Deal by Oren Klaff. This book will walk you through every step of a pitch and provide you with strategies and tactics to engage and persuade your audience.
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