Sky Business. Sky Ethernet. Sales. Find out what Sam’s up to here
‘Seeing the week-on-week increases to order volumes is a source of pride’
What’s your career journey been like up until now?
I’ve had seven years in Sales, mainly in Channel Management.
The first five of those were spent at FluidOne, where I went from a very green graduate selling broadband to IT Managers to selling some of the larger deals in the company’s history. After moving across to their partner team, I felt equipped to make the jump to the exclusively Channel-based organisation, Virtual1.
After nearly two years managing existing and new strategic accounts as part of their ambitious growth strategy, I was made aware that the Sky Ethernet project was taking off and there would be a vacancy opening. The opportunity was irresistible, and I feel very fortunate to be the first Account Manager with a chance to bring my experience to bear in this environment.
What does a typical day working here look like for you?
Days are usually spent in one of two ways. Either I’m out with customers & prospects, ensuring the effective implementation of individual account strategies. Or I’m in the office, managing the internal side of the same strategy. I’d say I spend 3/5 days out of the office generally. About 40% of my job is administrative whereas the rest is spent in meetings (or travelling to them!)
If you’ve been here over one year, how have you made a difference in your role?
I haven’t been here for more than a year but given how new the team is I can see the team growing all the time. I’ve already had an opportunity to help mould the strategy around commercials, processes, products.
An example of where I’ve had the opportunity to guide strategy was in developing & presenting the business case for a reduction to our rate card. This involved compiling insight around commercials / order volumes through partners and presenting internally where Sky were not commercially competitive & where we needed to take action.
In my day-to-day function I can point to a strengthening relationship with customers, an overall uptick in order volumes and a leading role played in deal negotiations.
What’s been your proudest moment since working here?
Every time I’m involved in a strategic conversation or asked my opinion based on experience in the industry I feel I’m being handed an opportunity to add more value than has been possible previously in my career.
Seeing the week-on-week increases to order volumes is a source of pride. There are also several large deals/solutions in the pipeline and new partners engaged in conversation that would constitute a “big win” which I am pursuing.
What’s the most enjoyable thing about your job?
It’s genuinely really exciting to know how much this team is planning to grow in the next few years and to be on board at the start of the journey. There is a “small business” feel to the team we’re working in, but knowing we have the resources of Sky behind us gives me the confidence that we can disrupt a market that has felt slow-moving for years. We know we’ve rattled the incumbents which shows we’re being successful!
Describe your work/life balance?
I have a relatively long commute (~2 hours each way) when I’m in the office but that’s offset by the trust I’m shown by Nick (my boss) in managing my own diary and working from home when it’s appropriate.
I’m able to fit in football after work on Thursdays and work and haven’t had any issues attending team meetings or events as they’re all planned well in advance. Also, having the full Sky Q product available to me free of charge doesn’t hurt!
What advice would you give to others trying to develop their career?
I see the role I’m in as a great opportunity to push for a future position in management. I think I have this opportunity firstly because of the well-travelled paths available for internal promotion and secondly because Sky as a whole, and in particular the team I’m in, are both growth environments.
My advice would be to make your first, second and third priorities about demonstrating success in the role you’re in. But when the opportunity lends itself I’ve found the L&D team to be extremely helpful in developing my skillset in the right way. I’m only at the start of that journey but the tools are clearly all there.
An interesting fact/something no one else knows about you?
My fiancé is making me go vegan in the build up to our wedding. I’ve been moaning about it, but I’m surprised to find that I actually quite like the food! (she doesn’t know this)