Meet McHale Gardiner, Client Support Specialist at Springbuk
Job Title: Client Support Specialist
Degree Path: Bachelor’s Degree in Religion/Religious Studies, Wabash College
Hometown: Monticello, IN
Current City: Indianapolis, IN
What led you to your getting into tech and this occupation? What was your first job in tech?
TechPoint Sales Bootcamp introduced me to Indy Tech and allowed for me begin my career in Indianapolis straight out of college.
What has been your career path so far?
I spent seven weeks working with TechPoint through the Sales Bootcamp program. After that, I began working for Springbuk as a Business Development Representative. I was a BDR for 11 months before transitioning to existing business. I still work at Springbuk but am now a Client Support Specialist.
When you think of a day in your life, what are the main work activities you do or responsibilities you have?
My main activities are responding to customers’ emails and working internally to ensure Springbuk’s clients’ issues have been resolved. I work internally with different teams to assign issues and identify bug fixes within the application we are selling. My main goal is to make sure Springbuk is running and operating as efficiently as possible for my clients.
Help us picture your work environment.
I am constantly on calls for both internal and external meetings. There is communication across the board with myself, the engineering team, and the data team to understand what fixes need to be made and to identify the next steps before issues are resolved.
What do you love about the work you do?
I love that I am constantly challenged to think outside of the box and that there is never a simple issue. The majority of problems solved are unique and take constant collaboration.
Which personality traits, interests, and abilities are important or common for a person to succeed in and enjoy this occupation?
I think people must always remain hungry and curious. You have to be eager to dig into a problem and quick to begin asking question if you’re going to succeed. You always must be humble and willing to reach-out to others to ask for help or guidance on identifying how to move forward when faced with challenges.
Which tools/technologies or technical skills are particularly important for a person to be proficient in for sales jobs?
You have to be proficient with Microsoft Excel, Slack, and the G-Suite of apps to be successful. Being able to utilize Tableau is an added bonus and can lead to additional success as well.
Which soft skills (aka general business skills or employability skills) are particularly important for a person to be proficient in for sales jobs?
Now that you’ve been in a BDR role for some time, what do you know now that you wish you knew before you started?
I actually moved out of the BDR role and was promoted in July of 2018. Having been removed from the role, I wish that I understood that I didn’t have to know everything about the product I was selling. As a BDR, I only needed to really know the value in the solution I was selling to my prospective buyer. There was a lot of unnecessary stress around not knowing an answer to a question when I should have focused on creating excitement for the prospect.
What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced as you started your role as an BDR?
The biggest challenge I faced as a BDR when I initially started was developing a sound process and schedule that I would adhere to. If I were to give any piece of advice to a starting BDR, I would say you have to develop a routine and stick to it. Breaking out your week by days initially is a good start. For me, Monday was a heavy prospecting day. Tuesday was meant for outreach/follow-up for the previous week. Wednesday was calls and prospecting. Thursday was for follow-ups from Tuesday. Friday was spent calling and prospecting. This type of routine can be boring, but staying consistent will lead to success.
From your experience with new grads applying for and beginning sales jobs, are they missing any particular knowledge, skills, or experiences that hold them back? Please describe.
We have not hired many new grads where I work. When in TechPoint Sales Bootcamp, I think the majority of new grads lacked a sense of humility and awareness of their surroundings.
Which resources, people, books, websites, etc. would you recommend to those who want to learn more or advance their skills in this occupation?
I would recommend the podcasts Without Fail, The Pitch, and Master of Scale. These are great podcasts about start-up businesses and the trials and tribulations others have faced as they grew their business.
What encouragement or advice would you offer to others considering this occupation or wanting to stand out amongst others?
I think you have to come in hungry and outwork those around you, especially early on. Others are going to be further in their career, have more experience, and know what they are talking about more than you will, so you have to put the time in early and get up to speed. Showing a constant drive to better yourself will lead people to enjoy working with you for your efforts and in time, you’ll be on the same level, if not above your peers.