Sue Fry (Osbaldeston) – Senior National Account Manager
Why did you choose to pursue a career in Sales?
Having worked as a sales assistant when I was leaving school in M&S as a Saturday staff, a natural flair for customer services, engagement and listening to what customers wanted led me to my first selling role in Coca Cola as a Soft Drinks Representative (SDR) in my early 20’s (a long time ago)
Tell us about your career journey in Sales so far?
My career so far has been very focused on the company and the culture of a business and a lot of what ‘do wants’ vs what I didn’t want’ from a role became apparent in the latter part of my career. My energy and infectious enthusiasm at times became a barrier with colleagues with ‘glass half empty’ and my personality elevated beyond negativity and toxic cultures. My journey has been fruitful, fulfilling and most enjoyable working with some great people and brands. I pride myself on developing within a role and look at my development in 3 year windows:
Y1 learn the role: Y2: develop in your role: Y3: Excel in your role and be the best you can be…..
What has been a career highlight for you?
In the very early days of my selling career, I was awarded sales person of the year at the National Coca Cola conference where over 300 employees attend in a central location and team members regionally are ‘recognised & Rewarded’. I was invited to the stage to collect the National Sales Person of the year in Grocery – I then cemented my career in Sales and continued in the business a further 12 years with fantastic career progression in the sales environment.
What’s the biggest challenge you have faced?
My biggest challenge in my career to date has been TIME struggling with balancing work, my career, travel, family, and life balance leaves little TIME for one’s self. Now the children are older and more independent on reflection the lack of time for my self and my family makes me sad.
Over the last 2 years I have reversed this in my career options and the changes are fantastic – working shorter hours, spending time with my girls, travelling less, living life and having hobbies all contribute to a healthier happier life.
Where do you see the future of Sales heading and how your career will develop with that?
Having entered a Fixed Term Contract (FTC) for the first time in my career I am enjoying the ways of working – for both parties its ‘try before you buy’ and finding the business fantastic and supportive. Entering into this type of contract allows both parties to initially build on good people skills and fresh ideas and team fit which I something I enjoy immensely (I think its because I’m a little nosey). Having a voice in a business can make a big impact if communicated in the correct manner.
What advice would you give to your younger self?
BE YOURSELF and your WHOLE SELF it’s a nice feeling having a clear direction, working with people with a winning ethos, and don’t underestimate the power of positive, confident individuals.
I let imposter syndrome hold me back in the early days which I do regret now I’m a little older and wiser……