My first months at Hilti before hitting the road in my Hilti Van!
11 months ago,
Adéu Barcelona, Bring it on Santiago!
Having recently finished my MBA at ESADE Business School in Barcelona, I felt anxious to start this new adventure with Hilti, through the Outperformer Program. After months of interviews, meetings and the famous assessment center, I finally arrived in Santiago, Chile to begin my first rotation as an Account Manager. Never had I imagined that I would be selling power tools and the challenges I would be encountering in the upcoming months in a country I had never been to.
As soon as I arrived I was integrated into a Sales Team that has been crucial in my training and understanding of the Hilti culture. Furthermore, I was welcomed by senior management who presented the business context and challenges to face, unveiling the strategic importance of my development for Hilti. I was greatly surprised by the willingness to help and openness of every member of the organization, as well as the exposure I would have within my rotations.
Our sales process is a key differential aspect from the competition, these last weeks I have been immersed in the Hilti Culture and products to guarantee I will be ready to assist clients properly. I have joined colleagues on van rides, visiting many different types of clients and assisting in multiple product demonstrations. Having no experience in Sales nor the Construction Industry, I have learnt so many things I’m extremely motivated to hit the road on my own and start creating value for the company.
The excitement of closing deals, learning that the product I helped to sell is giving clients great benefits, and the hands-on training with tools, were the highlight of my first month in training in Hilti. Currently, I’m in Mexico City where I have traveled to continue my sales development with a 2-week intensive course with fellow colleagues from throughout the region.
In the months to come, I will have my own clients to visit, developing business relations that generate lasting value for Hilti. The effort, training and guidance from colleagues and management will for sure pay off, all I can say is: Adéu Barcelona, it was a pleasure; Bring it on Santiago!
Looking back at what the 2017 Outperformer Summit was...
8 months ago,
Global Outperformer Summit 2017
It has been a couple of weeks since I got back from our first Outperformer Summit, where not only was I able to interact with many people in the organization with such interesting backgrounds, but I was finally able to meet face to face with the different Outperformers from all over the world with whom I had been working with virtually the last couple of months.
In this super intense week, packed with simulations and roleplays, leadership seminars and heated discussions, we were able to grasp the importance of the Hilti Headquarters and our role (and responsibility) as future leaders of this company. The exposure to senior leaders and the executive board, who were all very patient to answer ALL of our questions, were glimpses of the level of importance this Summit has for the development of talent at Hilti.
I must confess it wasn’t all work at our week in Schaan… We were toured around the city and closed every night with amazing dinners where we all shared our experiences and our learnings from the day. During the closing weekend, we all gathered in Zürich and said our farewells until we meet next time in June 2018.
After this week, I have fully digested the importance of every rotation I will undergo to become a leader in the organization. It has also fueled my motivation to keep working to reach my full potential as a professional and to positively impact others in the organization.
Without giving too much details, I can confess it has been a truly UNBELIEVABLE experience.
With Sander Verberne, holding our Hilti 2016 Financial Results book with an amazing scenery.
Reflection on my first 6 months in the Outperformer program!
7 months ago,
My Hilti team!
Its been 6 months since I moved to Santiago to start my journey in Hilti and as I look back, I reflect on the different elements that have helped me adapt to Chilean life. Without a doubt, the support from different people in the company, trainings and mentorship have contributed, but the KEY group of people has been my team (BC-2).
Many new things have risen through my first rotation and their support, patience, motivation and good sense of humor have made everything much easier. I have learnt to rely on them and support them with anything I can, as we hit the streets every day…
Nonetheless I must confess that not everything has been work & sales. Every week we meet up with different colleagues in the organization and play football. It has been an amazing way for me to meet more people in the company, release tension and have fun!
Planning, organizing and measuring impact of a company event.
5 months ago,
Accepting new challenges!
This month I had the opportunity to plan and organize a company event aimed at engaging clients and fostering collaboration within the organization. Personally this was a completely new experience for me where besides planning and coordinating the activity, I was empowered to take decisions and manage stakeholders’ interests as I considered best. By doing so, I was able to enhance my exprience in event/project management, manage communications, analyze social media interactions and most importantly with many colleagues with whom I had sporadic interactions.
The learning experience in the Outperformer Program is constant, we just have to be open to accept new challenges and give it our best shot!
Reflection on my first year in Hilti as an Account Manager...
2 weeks ago,
What a year…
Yesterday was my last day in the first rotation of the Outperformer Program as an Account Manager in Santiago de Chile. Arriving with no commercial background, this last year has been a rollercoaster for me, filled with ups and downs – moments of great excitement and not so great events. Despite it all, it’s been an amazing year for me where I have learnt a lot about the company, our business model, our clients and more importantly about myself.
Visiting clients at their offices and jobsites and driving around the city doing product demos is not a job for everyone. Honestly, I had a hard time picturing myself in it for a while. As time passed I grew comfortably into the sales role, always being supported by my peers and supervisors, I managed to develop customer accounts and engage them with Hilti. Although I am far from having an experienced sales profile, I know that this year has been humbling for me: learning to communicate effectively with different profiles in an organization; adapting to different scenarios and developing strategies to engage clients; working independently and with limited resources to get things done; and keeping myself motivated while dealing with tough situations.
To put into perspective and showcase the non-sugarcoated-experiences the following are real-life situations I encountered during this previous year:
– Being rejected by clients who don’t have time (Link to Beware the busy Manager) or more accurately don’t want to deal with you.
– Dealing with solitude in tough sales days (or even weeks :))
– Multitasking: prepping a meeting, seeking products for demos, contacting product champions for trainings, dealing with customer complaints, coordinating company events; all while driving and having a sales target pressure.
It may all seem overwhelming, but in retrospective all the following takeaways have shaped and toughened my character and my ability to develop professionally in the organization:
– I could be very proud in some situations and facing dominant-unsatisfied clients was extremely tough. Through practice, support, and putting feedback into action, I understood I couldn’t take criticism personally and let it affect my mood.
– I’ve learnt to negotiate and bargain with demanding counterparts, allowing me to set standards and barriers for when to say no.
– I reinforced the fact that I can adapt quickly to challenging situations, redefining strategies when unplanned events arise and seeking the best possible outcome in a business relationship.
– It’s impossible and exhausting to do everything on my own and achieve excellent results; it is extremely important to work in teams, rely on my peers and delegate when possible.
– Having a bigger picture of the company has helped me understand how my decisions affect other business areas. I am now considering multiple points of view and role-playing scenarios making tradeoffs to successfully reach goals.
Through these personal learnings I realized the importance of this rotation for my career at Hilti and how it will influence my decisions in future roles.
Truth said, the positive aspects and takeaways of the role actually outweigh the obstacles set in our way as Account Managers. Besides the previously mentioned learnings, my exposure to senior management in meetings and van rides gave me the possibility to display my development and take away a broader vision of the how the company is managed and the complexities they juggle with. Furthermore, I grasped and executed our sales approach and tasted competitive market realities while leveraging on the trainings, support and knowhow of my peers. We shared as a TEAM the victories and defeats, working for collective development and success.
Again, I greatly treasure this experience and acknowledge the value it has for everyone that goes through it. I am more prepared than before to face diverse challenges the business will bring and would like to thank everyone who has helped me in this journey. I have grown fond of Sales and look forward to a next opportunity hitting the streets…
For Spanish speakers I’ll share what the Marketing Director told me during a van ride regarding my role as an Account Manager at Hilti.
“En este periodo entraste a un túnel de lija con piel de bebé, pero te aseguro que saldrás con cuero de chancho”.
It seems direct translations wouldn’t make much sense in other languages, so ask a Spanish speaking colleague – worst case, you’ll end up learning a Spanish expression.