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Developing Your Sales Reps, with Steve Preston & Bridget Gleason [Episode 654]

Steve Preston, Chief Marketing Officer of Qstream and Bridget Gleason, VP of Sales for Logz.io and my regular partner, join me on this episode.


First guest: Steve Preston

  • Qstream software taps into how people think and learn. It delivers information daily on a mobile device in interactive chunks that are easy to remember. It improves knowledge retention by 170%. It can change behavior.
  • Qstream has been on the market for nine years. They focus mostly on sales enablement. It could be used by any knowledge worker. The information is in the form of a question or a challenge that sets up a learning moment.
  • The scenarios are set by the sales enablement or sales operations team. The algorithm presents each situation at least twice. When answered correctly twice in succession, a scenario is removed from the rotation.
  • Qstreams are helpful in supporting product launches or methodologies. One challenge a day is good for most people. 16 to 20 scenarios make up a campaign. Campaigns can be run for teams in competition.
  • Steve talks about sales stages, discovery, demos, and closing. Higher proficiency in those skills theoretically correlates with better outcomes. Andy and Steve discuss other subtle factors that influence outcomes.
  • Qstream adapts well to serve the areas of the brain that handle book knowledge (the prefrontal cortex) and skills and emotions (the basal ganglia). Qstream has been used in clinical trials with diabetics for behavior change.
  • Steve discusses sales productivity. Streamline processes by removing wasted motion and automating rote tasks. Through repetition, conscious incompetence first becomes competence and then unconscious mastery.
  • Are there other paths to mastery besides a product like Qstream? Be mindful of your blocks and practice them. Qstream makes it painless with little sacrifice of time.
  • Observed data is misleading. What looks like a ‘discovery’ problem may really be a lack of built trust. A customer that does not trust will not respond accurately to discovery. Test sales proficiency at every stage.

Second Guest: Bridget Gleason

  • It’s time for getting those deals over the line for the end of the quarter. Bridget is stressed but confident. “There are 18 ways to get to the number!”
  • Andy talks to sales leaders who are confused between managing and coaching. Coaching isn’t about tactics, but about teaching skills one-on-one. It’s time to bring mentoring to the sales team to develop individuals.
  • Studies show the primary reason employees leave their company is their manager. If the manager is just tactical, they are showing no care for their employees. The salesperson also needs to care about their prospects.
  • Bridget manages by data, reports, and team meetings. She coaches and mentors together in one-on-ones. Sometimes it will be about how to execute the deals; sometimes it will be about the rep and their options.
  • Bridget shares a career mentoring success story from someone she hired at her past company.
  • Mentoring cements an employee emotionally to the company. Bridget says the CEO of Logz.io visits with her sales team. He knows them. He listens to them. They tell Bridget it matters to them.
  • Andy is frustrated by sales managers who forget it’s still a people business. Managers need to mentor and coach the team and manage the numbers. To help your team members to excel individually and as a team is thrilling.
  • Bridget likes her reps to come to her with a list for their one-on-one meeting. It encourages thoughtfulness.