Meetup thinks you’re Super

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The Colorado Tech Sales Roundtable was started in May of 2015.  Word about our meetings at the Commons on Champa was word-of-mouth through CTA Volunteers.  I tried various platforms as an on-line home to schedule events and track messages.  Nothing really clicked until I started using Meetup in August of that year.  We quickly rose to 50+ members and I had to start paying for a premium account on their platform.  At this point I knew we were onto something.  Adding James Foy as a co-organizer in 2016 absolutely put ‘jumper cables’ on the group and our member numbers soared to 500+  within a couple of years.  James also helped bring an important change in format: from moderated discussions around professional development in sales to more presenters and panel discussions.  In 2018, Samuel Thomas Elliott asked to take our concept to Colorado Springs and has expanded our presence in Colorado.  It is called the Colorado Technology Sales Roundtable for a reason, after Meetup Analytics December 2018all, not the Denver Tech Sales Meetup.

All this has paid off.  At this writing, our member numbers are 650+ and adding a member every day or two.  Our members have given us 78 five-star reviews (and one four star) and we’re going to keep having events every month for the foreseeable future.  Meetup has noticed this and granted us Super-Group Status.

The analytics are great.  People are finding this group impactful on their careers and professional development.  Our members are also pointing out that we’re making everyone feel at home.  I’m excited about where this meetup is going to go in the future.

Looking ahead to 2019 events

Thursday, January 10th Convercent is hosting Built In Brews. Always a valuable, high quality event. Walk-ups will not be permitted at this event. You must be registered to attend.Built_in_brews

My own Meetup, the Colorado Tech Sales Roundtable, Denver Chapter, has grown out of our 2018 location at Lustre Pearl.  We’re moving our events to Venture X Co-Working space for 2019.  Out-growing Lustre Pearl is great problem to have.  Also, Venture X may be more convenient for those coming in from South of Denver.  It’s in the same Plaza as the Dave & Busters at I-25 & Colorado Blvd.

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This space is really ideal for meetups & we were lucky that their community organizer, Michael Patton, gave us a tour this week.  The space is at once far more elegant than Denver’s other co-working spaces I have visited, and it is uniquely Colorado in it’s classic southwest style.  Parking is very easy, RTD is 100 yards away and we’d need 5X of our current members to RSVP at once to outgrow their space.  We’re excited to have Venture X as our hosting sponsor for the foreseeable future.

If you are in the market for co-working space in Denver, Venture X is offering a different user experience than other companies in the area.  Check them out.  One unique aspect to Venture X is their location.  They are not downtown; if you are hiring talent south of Denver, their commute to Venture X will be far easier, either by car or RTD.

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On January 15th, Our Colorado Springs Chapter is hosting the Sales Recruiter Roundtable.  Please bring your business cards to this event.  This event has been held three times in Denver and  it’s been one of our best-attended events in the Denver chapter.  I’m excited to help Samuel host this event in the ‘Springs.  This event is hosted at the Epicentral Co-Working space in downtown Colorado Springs.

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Colorado Technology Sales Roundtable: Two November events in Denver and Colorado Springs

On November 12th, we return to Lustre Pearl in Denver’s RiNo District for a talk with Anthony Franco:

Stop Selling and Start Serving your Customers Needs

Anthony will discuss something at the core of our communities mission of professional development. “Become a better sales professional: stop talking about your product / service and start addressing and solving their business goals and financial goals.”

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On November 13th, our Colorado Springs Chapter is hosting Leif Ulman CEO and Co-founder of KidReports. Leif overcame the challenges of selling a new product to an industry. When KidReports first started selling their software platform, their biggest competition was the status quo.

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Selling a New/Disruptive Product

In charge of enterprise and corporate sales, Leif and his team listened to their customers in order to adapt the product and learn the best way to sell to the customer’s needs. After 6 years, Leif and KidReports were acquired by the company that grew to be their largest competitor.

The venue is Epicentral on North Tejon.

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Denver Startup Week recap and a Sandler webinar for women in Sales

Our Denver Startup Week Session was a success.  with 177 RSVPs, we had 50+ in attendance at 8AM on DSW’s Friday morning.  This was remarkable as the attendees were up against horrendous traffic caused by police tape covering an eight-city-block scene nearby from the prior night in Downtown Denver.

Our panelists:

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We sent the slide deck to the mailing list, but there were several email bounce-backs, so, apologies if you didn’t actually receive it.  For those looking for the slide deck, a PDF can be found here: DSW Sales WTH Presentation

The Moderators:

Our Fantastic Support Staff:

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One other item; Last-minute webinar for women in Sales, from Dan Levitt of Sandler Training:

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Denver Startup Week

We have some great panelists for our DSW presentation next week.

In anticipation of some folks moving a little slow the morning after the Thursday night party at Beta, we’re rolling out a Bloody Mary bar.  We’ll understand if you have to take a nap Friday afternoon.  Coffee will be on hand, too. Personal Energy Drink favorite: Monster Zero.

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Be sure to register here: https://www.denverstartupweek.org/schedule/4633-startup-check-product-heck-yeah-sales-wth

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While we are self-funding the BMB, we still have a huge shout-out to the sponsors of Denver startup Week.

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Our TIPS Certified servers will be ready to get your Friday at CSW off to the right start.  We’re planning on standard ingredients, plus bacon  Any special requests?  Please email, call or text.  🙂

Colorado Springs

Colorado Springs is a City I, frankly, knew too little about.  The economy has has reputation as having a ‘little brother’ relationship to Denver, with Denver’s dominant center of business gravity in Colorado.

Last night I had a lot of details and nuance filled in for me.  The economy has a reputation being tilted towards “Federal Sector” business, home to defense contractors and has 220 IT & cyber security companies.

The Economy is diversifying and, thanks partially to functional tele-presence web conference technology, one headwind may be fading in importance: Transportation.

Last night several local Colorado Springs Sales Professionals described what is was like  dealing with a city whose airport is not well populated with Nationwide Airline Carriers.  When Southwest opted out of the Colorado Springs Airport and Western Pacific Airlines folded, the local economy suffered.  The reality is that business executives and sales pros alike need easy access to rocky mountain region, access to the rest of the country and the rest of the globe.  While Colorado Springs Residents leverage the local airport as much as possible, the airlines there are limited & incur additional stopovers in their travel.  Technologies like Zoom and other video conferencing technologies have alleviated this to a point.

Another tailwind that may spark a lot of growth in Colorado Springs is the talk of affordability vis a vis Denver.  There are ~100,000+ people coming into Colorado per year, primarily in metro-Denver.  This has pushed the cost of living up in Denver.  This trend has not hit the ‘Springs yet & makes the city an affordable option (think Denver circa 2005) with all the outdoor lifestyle benefits of living in Colorado.

Another interesting anecdote relayed to me was about the VC community.  Silicon Valley thrives, in part, due to the physical proximity of VC companies to founders and entrepreneurs.  The VC community in Colorado is centered around Denver.  Having this community expand to Colorado Springs would help considerably.

There was an electricity in the air at this meeting last night.  Several Sales Professionals were saying the city is poised for growth.  I’m excited about the Colorado Springs Chapter of the meetup and I’ll see you in November, January and beyond.

See you on the 28th, bright and early!

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Denver Startup Week has announced the Venue for our 8AM Session on the 28th, the Polsinelli Offices on the 23rd floor of 1401 Lawrence St. in Denver.  33 sign-ups so far, with three weeks to go!

Try not to get distracted by the view when you arrive.

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We are still finalizing our Panelists and can guarantee the content will be priceless.

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In the meantime, we have our regular Monday night Meetup at Lustre Pearl on the 10th and our inaugural Colorado Springs Meetup on Tuesday night.

View More: http://kateslensphotography.pass.us/i-heart-cos-2014

Pitch Lab: Every Great Sales Team Needs a Great Strategy. Here’s Yours.

What a great concept: Mixing Sales and Improv.  A 2018 to-do of mine is to take an improv class.  This would be a natural continuation of the two years of Toastmasters classes I had back at Oracle in California.  As sales professionals, we should all be engaged in a relentless pursuit to improve our communication skills.  Even Olympic Athletes and NBA players have coaches and attend practice daily.  We are Sales Professionals and should pursue our development with equal vigor.

Pitch Lab 2018 crowd

To that end, Pitch Lab is a great group to get involved in.  They have an event coming up next week that I will be at: “Every Great Sales Team Needs a Great Strategy. Here’s Yours.”

Register here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/pitch-lab-every-great-sales-team-needs-a-great-strategy-heres-yours-tickets-47311504985

I should also add that I’m not plugging these guys because they made me the ‘face’ of PitchLab (see below) I swear there is no conflict of interest!

Who It’s For

  • Entrepreneurs who want to transition away from “founder-based selling” and grow a dedicated sales team
  • Sales leaders frustrated by their team’s lack of consistency
  • Anyone who desires a more predictable sales pipeline

What You’ll Learn

What do Bill Belichick, Pat Summitt & Steve Kerr all have in common? They all won numerous championships by developing an offensive system bigger than the talents of any one star player.

In this workshop, we’ll uncover the 3 keystones of a winning B2B sales approach: a discovery framework, consistent sales process and specialized sales roles.

You’ll leave with insight on how to ask the right questions to understand client motivation, differentiate yourself from the competition and close the right deals.

Takeaways

  • How to quickly assess the viability of new opportunities to effectively prioritize your team’s time
  • How to evolve your client-facing team from order-takers to consultants
  • How to take sales pipeline review meetings from painful to productive

Pitch Lab Sales Workshop

About Your Instructor

As Managing Partner at Pitch Lab, Jay Mays helps growth-stage, B2B companies build a scalable sales approach – while helping client-facing teams be more confident, engaging presenters.

Throughout his 20-year career in sales and business development, Jay has established multi-million dollar relationships with clients including AT&T, Meijer, FedEx and Universal Music Group.

Jay’s passion isn’t limited to sales, he’s also into cortados, 90s alt rock, the beach, The Onion, Larry David, dry socks, dark chocolate and of course his family.

What Folks Are Saying About Pitch Lab!

“I’ve worked with a lot of sales consultants over the years, and I can I say unequivocally Jay was the best. He took the time to understand our company, culture and service offerings and then custom create a sales process for us.”

— Natalie Henley, CEO Volume Nine

“Jay is able to think on both strategic and operational levels and is the kind of guy you want leading your deal making. Adept at turning ambiguous conversations into multi million dollar business relationships, Jay delivers.”

— Brian Casazza, CIO Vistage Worldwide

“ARF! ARF! ARF! ARF!”

— The ‘Lab’ of PitchLab.

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One other note, I recently registered with Denver’s Improve group ‘Bovine Metropolis’  and will take some started classes later this year.

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