💎 In order to be an impactful salesperson, the first thing to remember is that Sales is a people to people business. Watch the video to the end to learn some tips that’ll take your sales skills to a new level!
📼 What makes you an effective and impactful salesperson? Play this video to get three top tips to learn a different side of your clients, master the art of handling objections, and demonstrate value. You'll hear from Clara Sierra, Senior Director, Business Development, Global Sales at Moody's.
📼Top tips to become an impactful salesperson #1: Become an expert on your client. A lot of clients use LinkedIn and Twitter to promote their brands. Not only use their website or google them but make sure to go into their Twitter account, follow their teammates, and their executives, looking at what they post and what they comment on Twitter and LinkedIn. This will help you to know a different side of your clients you can use to get them excited about your product.
📼 Top tips to become an impactful salesperson #2: Master the art of handling objections. Clara uses the “Feel / Felt / Found” method: when a client presents her with objections, such as “your solution is too expensive”, or “I don't need it. I don't want it. It doesn't work for me”, she will typically say, “I see how can feel that way. I have other clients who have felt that way also, but here's what we've found in order to make this solution meaningful to their business.” When you approach them from this angle,, the client who's delivering the objection feels seen. Using the “Feel / Felt / Found” method really opens up the conversation and gets you to the next stage of selling!
Become An Impactful Salesperson - Tip #3: Add Value And Tell Stories
Adding value and telling stories is so important in the sales experience, not just for your client, but for you also. You don't want to be seen as only a transactional salesperson. You want to think about the client experience. What is your product or solution going to do for your client? You want to be able to wrap a story around, what some of your other clients have found and how your product has helped them in their business. The key is to continue to expand the conversation, adding value to your client's experience and telling stories.
📨 Are you interested in joining Moody’s? They have open positions! To learn more, click here.
Get to Know Clara
Throughout a distinctive career earning her executive management positions at some of the world's largest financial services institutions, Clara Sierra has always stood apart: for her extraordinary professional relationships, her remarkable passion for sales/marketing, her unique personal background, and, most of all, for her unrelenting drive to achieve the best possible results for her employees, employers, and her clients. If you are interested in a career at Moody’s, you can connect with Clara Sierra on LinkedIn. Don’t forget to mention this video!
More About Moody’s
Moody’s is a globally integrated risk assessment firm that empowers organizations to make better decisions. Their data, analytical solutions, and insights help decision-makers identify opportunities and manage the risks of doing business with others. They believe that greater transparency, more informed decisions, and fair access to information open the door to shared progress. With over 11,000 employees in more than 40 countries, Moody’s combines international presence with local expertise and over a century of experience in financial markets.
💎The STAR technique is a great tool to stand out in your next job interview. Don’t miss this recruiter’s insight into how to utilize this method! Watch the video to the end for advice on how to best prepare for an interview with Sun Life.
📼Have the STAR technique tool handy when preparing for your interview with Sun Life. “The best advice that I can give a candidate is preparation. And one of the best techniques to use to prepare for your interview with us is utilizing the STAR technique” says Winde Farinacci, Senior Talent Acquisition Consultant at Sun Life.
📼What is the STAR technique and how to use it in a job interview? The STAR technique is the method you can use to tell the story of a problem that you've overcome while working either on a project or trying to find a solution to an issue during your work. It also demonstrates to the person interviewing you how you're able to clearly communicate the story behind that issue or problem.
📼Have the STAR technique at hand during your whole interview process with Sun Life. And what exactly are the stages in that process? Initially, your application is reviewed by a talent acquisition consultant at Sun Life. From there, if your experience aligns with the role, they will invite you to have an initial interview. Up next, if there's still a mutual interest, the company will then present you to a hiring leader, who may invite you to a final stage, which is either a peer interview or a meeting with the director of the business unit for the position that you're applying for. At each stage, Sun Life will be assessing your interest level in the opportunity, as well as how much research you've done about the company.
Moving Forward From The STAR Technique: Virtual Interview Tips
At Sun Life, most interviews will be conducted via a virtual environment, so some of Winde’s tips are to prepare, dress professionally, have good lighting, have a good audio and internet connection, and ensure that you're free of any distractions. Last, but not least: show enthusiasm and be your great self! Finally, thank the interviewers for their time and insight on the role and the opportunity.
🧑💼 Are you interested in joining Sun Life? They have open positions! To learn more, click here.
Get to Know Winde Farinacci
Trusted as an accomplished staffing professional with more than 15 years of expertise in meeting clients’ needs for qualified and well-matched talent across numerous verticals including manufacturing, construction, hospitality, retail, call center, healthcare, clinical research, social services, and security. She's uniquely skilled at interfacing with and securing agreements from diverse audiences. If you are interested in a career at Sun Life, you can connect with Winde Farinacci on LinkedIn. Don’t forget to mention this video!
More About Sun Life
Sun Life’s success is driven by their collaborative culture. They are united by a common purpose: To help Clients achieve lifetime financial security and live healthier lives. They continually look for ways to bring innovative, insightful, and simple solutions to their clients, to allow them to feel confident and have trust in us as their financial partner. Sun Life strives to enable them to gain the freedom to live their way and have peace of mind for their futures and for their families' futures.
As a kid, Maleni Palacios had a long list of questions that no one could answer for her.
“I started asking myself, ‘Why are some countries rich? Why are some of them “poor”? What is this notion of a country and a nation-state? Why do people have different lines of work? Who chooses that for them?’” remembers the associate consultant.
Now, several years later, Maleni works at Capco, where she makes a living out of questioning the world, particularly what the future of financial services will look like. She’s learned that some of the best answers to the hardest questions come when you work towards them together.
We sat down with Maleni to talk about her journey into financial consulting, how she found a sense of community through Women@Capco and Latinx@Capco, two of the firm’s affinity groups, and what she’s most looking forward to next.
Chasing Tangible Change
Maleni grew up in Atlanta, but regularly spent time in Mexico, her ancestral home. She credits the experience of traveling between two cultures as what inspired her to start questioning the world.
“My dad and uncles were constantly talking about the world and globalization, like the implications of NAFTA on trade and migration,” she said. “I was an only child for a long time, in this environment of adults, and found it very intriguing. That’s where my insatiable curiosity was cultivated.”
For this reason, when she moved to New York City to study at Barnard, Maleni was drawn to economics. “A lot of the theories we know about were made by people a long time ago,” she says. “Adam Smith was not here at the turn of the 21st century.”
She also liked how interdisciplinary and direct economics was, especially compared to behavioral and philosophical fields like anthropology and art, which interested her but didn’t seem to come with immediate tangible change for societies. “A lot of what I'm passionate about or a lot of what inspires me is changing people's lives on a daily basis,” she says. “Economic policy directly affects people’s day-to-day lives, and to me, that’s valuable.”
Maleni studied the 2008 financial crisis in college, and wanted to be able to work towards improving the financial system so that things like that didn’t happen again. “I wanted to understand how institutions were regulating themselves, how they use their freedom,” she says. “I liked that at Capco I’d have some specialization, but work with different banks at different scales in different engagements. That was really compelling to me, and why I came here.”
Learning in Community
In her first weeks at Capco, Maleni and her fellow colleagues gave a presentation on demographic shifts as a driver for change poised to impact the financial services industry—and now, just over a year later, she’s used the initial research to publish an official Capco whitepaper titled “Unbanked & Underserved: Latinx Demographic Changes & Creating Financial Inclusion.”
“You can run with your ideas at Capco, and they’ll help you accomplish them,” says Maleni, who adds that she’s enjoying pursuing some of her academic interests at work and positioning herself as a thought leader.
As she networked and collaborated with colleagues at the firm in order to publish the paper, she was reminded of the kinds of discussions she’d been able to have in college, and the community spaces where she felt comfortable having them.
Maleni knew she wanted to continue to find opportunities for those kinds of conversations at Capco, so she joined Women@Capco where she leads Table Talks, a Women@Capco initiative that convenes the women of Capco and allies to discuss intersectional gender-based issues in a corporate environment. She also helped found Latinx@Capco, where she serves as Community Outreach Lead, when interest around it swelled earlier this year.
In both groups, Maleni enjoys getting to know people who share her identities in a space where they can support each other.
“You can talk about best practices that got you where you are: ‘How did you do that, who did you talk to, how did that happen?’” says Maleni. “You get a lot of connectivity, and a support group that can help you through when times are difficult.”
“As someone who’s Latinx, a woman of color, a first gen college student—all of these labels I hold mean that certain environments and institutions were not made for people like me,” she says. “That’s why it’s so important to convene people that look like you when you're at these institutions so that you can visualize a future that includes you.”
Building Impact Together
Maleni says she loves that despite being relatively early in her career, she’s been able to leverage her writing and her community involvement to forge relationships with senior leaders and push herself. That’s been especially true thanks to remote work, she notes, which has let her connect with Capco coworkers all around the country.
When she thinks about what’s next, she knows she wants to keep chasing answers alongside her community:
“I think about where we can have the most impact. Sometimes it’s well-defined and small, like our 20, 30 Latinx@Capco members. Maybe you’re impacting a client at a big Tier-I global bank,” she says. “As people, we get sucked into this idea of ‘we have to be changing the world.’ But sometimes that takes time. Defining where and how you can have the most impact is critical.”
Stephanie J. Larosiliere has a career she enjoys in an industry she didn't even know existed when she was a kid—and the resilience to stay in that industry, even when she looks around and doesn't see many people like her in her field.
She has her grandfather to thank for that.
"My family has greatly affected who I am today, and my journey," says Stephanie, whose grandfather emigrated from Haiti to Michigan in the early 1950s to pursue a degree in agronomy, where he was the only Black man in his program. "Nothing I could go through today could come close… this helps to drive me to fight to be represented in spaces where I may not be welcome."
We sat down with Stephanie, whose long career in financial services has led to a role as the Head of Municipal Business Strategies & Development at investment firm Invesco, to talk about her personal and professional journey. Read on to hear why she decided to pursue a career in financial services, and her top piece of advice for other people who aspire to find success in a field they have to navigate on their own.
Paving the Way
Faine Jean-Baptiste, Stephanie's maternal grandfather, and his class at Michigan State University, then Michigan State College, where he ultimately received his degree in Agronomy from what was widely regarded as the best such program in the U.S. Photo circa 1953.
Stephanie's parents were born in Haiti. She is a first-generation American, but thanks to her grandfather, her family already had a history of attending American institutions of higher education. When it came time to decide what she was going to do with her life, Stephanie says she felt she had "no choice but to continue the legacy."
"Being Haitian I've always known that I come from a brave and bold people that established the world's first independent Black republic. Haiti has a very rich history; that history gives us a sense of ownership over our being, over who we are, and that has resonated in the way that Haitian people engage in the world."
Stephanie sees that ownership in her grandfather's story. He came to the U.S. when he was 45, a married father of seven daughters, and was the only Black man in his class. "There was somewhat of an audacity on his part to think that he could leave Haiti and go to Michigan. And why not?" says Stephanie.
Why not, indeed?
Stephanie asked that same question of herself when it came time to plan her own career.
No one in Stephanie's family knew anything about financial services. She only found out about the industry through the cooperative learning program offered by her New York City high school.
Through the program, she was matched with a company during the summer between her junior and senior years of high school. Stephanie was matched with JP Morgan, and stayed working with them through her senior year, switching off weeks at work and at school.
"As a 16-year-old, I knew you went to the bank to deposit money, and that's it. I'd heard of trading, but I didn't quite connect how that even worked," says Stephanie. She soaked in everything she learned on the job—especially when it came to the incoming class of post-college analysts.
"These were people who were five years older than me. They were not so old that it felt like a far reach. I remember looking at them and saying, 'I want to do what they do,'" says Stephanie.
So she kept working for it. When her manager at JP Morgan asked her to stay on during college, Stephanie withdrew from the out-of-state school she was planning to go to and enrolled in a NYC program so that she could stay employed during undergrad.
"Now that I think about it, I have no idea how I did it, but I worked 40 hours a week and I had a full-time schedule at school," says Stephanie, laughing. "I just ran around the city. I would take early morning classes, go to work, take evening classes, get home at 10, do my homework, and get up and do it again. It's the benefit of being 20 years old. And I would do this all in heels, which is insane to me."
Stephanie's hard work paid off. After finishing school, she was offered a full-time role at the bank. She was proud of what she'd accomplished, but it didn't come easily, and entering the world of full-time work in financial services was a whole new challenge.
"Not only was I a woman, a Black woman, but I was also the child of immigrants," says Stephanie. "I always feel like I don't belong here. I happened to have broken my way through to get here, but I'm not the person that is supposed to be here, based on how this normally goes."
Two things have helped Stephanie deal with those feelings. The first is remembering her grandfather's story.
"Whenever I feel like an outsider, or when someone treats me with less respect than I think they should because of the color of my skin, I think back to him and his bold choice to educate himself in a country that made it clear he was not welcome," she says. "He was so brave to do this and it makes me wonder how much he dealt with as the only Black man in his class. Nothing I could go through today could come close… this helps to drive me to fight to be represented in spaces where I may not be welcome."
The second thing is leaving environments she felt she couldn't change.
Finding a Place to Grow
Stephanie stayed at JP Morgan, and later JPMorgan Chase, for six years. She struggled with figuring out how to take up space, especially when an early manager told her that she was too outspoken. But Stephanie realized that was more of a comment on the manager's leadership skills than it was something for her to deal with. "I have always made it clear that I had a voice. I have value to add. I've made it my business not to let people quiet me and silence me in rooms where I feel like I should be speaking," she says.
When Stephanie realized risk management wasn't for her, she decided to switch to a smaller firm. That was "less of a rat race," she says, but also felt like a fast-path to "a cushy life and a mediocre existence." So she went back into big banks for a job at Goldman.
"My time there molded me and shaped me a lot into the person I am today," she says. But her time there wasn't without its challenges: "There was a hierarchy in place. You know, 'you don't speak before your boss' kind of thing. Although I loved the company, my career path felt unclear, and I knew it was time for a change."
When an opportunity at Invesco came up, Stephanie took it. She hadn't heard of the standalone asset manager, but was interested in the opportunity, particularly in the chance to do something completely new to her: be client-facing. When her boss's role, which required plenty of client interaction, opened up, Stephanie decided to go for it. "I kept thinking that if I have to report to someone new, I'm always going to know that I could've been that person, but because I let fear stand in the way, I'm not," she says. So she overcame that fear and now is both a senior client portfolio manager and head of a team of product managers and client portfolio managers covering the Municipal Bond business.
And she gets to do it in an environment that really works for her.
"Invesco has been extremely supportive of me, and of women in general, having a voice. That's not something that I necessarily had in my previous roles," says Stephanie. "At Invesco, I feel like I have much more ownership of my narrative than I ever had, and that has allowed me to progress in the way that I have in the last decade."
Looking back on her career, Stephanie has one piece of advice for others who are trying to build a career that fulfills them, especially in places they don't feel welcome: you don't have to have all the answers.
"People assume that I have a very specific vision," she says. "A lot of the time, I just know what I don't want. And by knowing what I don't want, it allows me to see the things that I want. So those things kind of shine a little bit brighter, and help to attract me to the things that make sense for me."