Sales Career Ladder

Cantilever’s sales methodology is evolving fast as the company grows. Our marketing apparatus is humming along which means more and more leads to manage. We can no longer do sales as an afterthought but instead need a dedicated staff to handle all the inquiries and opportunities we have.

We are evolving our sales gameplan to be more incisive and efficient. One key thing about sales is that the sales team all must understand what they are selling intimately. All of our salespeople must have worked in the web field in some capacity, or have trained substantially to understand the nuances of our sites and why they are special and different.

Sales for us is about long term customer value and relationships. Part of being in Sales for us is being a custodian of those relationships and making sure that people’s assessment of us is strong.

Sales Career Ladder

CategoryTrainee⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Marketing Knowledge
Understands core digital marketing principles. Understands the messages we provide in the marketing journey and knows how to translate them into sales conversations.
Can provide feedback to marketing teams on how to adjust marketing messaging in response to prospect interactions
Can double as a marketer. Understands the nuances of digital marketing. Can construct a streamlined pipeline from stranger to sale.
Lead Intake
Can engage an inbound prospect by email and phone to create immediate brand affinity. Can accurately explain Cantilever and our offerings. Can create a generic intake questionnaire. Can qualify the lead.
Converts a higher percentage of leads into qualified opportunities. Can inspire the lead to see additional opportunities they hadn’t thought of yet, or encourage them to reduce their scope as appropriate. Can write a more engaging questionnaire which impresses the lead.
Converts the highest percentage of qualified leads into prospects. Can modify and optimize our lead intake process. Can manage other lead intake specialists to distribute work while maintaining efficacy. Creates new techniques and approaches without instruction.
Prospecting
Can use established procedures to reach out to a list of prospects and engage them with charming language. Can be creative and personable in prospect interactions.
Has a high cold-outreach conversion rate. Can identify outreach targets according to the strategic priorities and unique abilities of Cantilever. Can prospect in person locally to their workplace. Can prospect across multiple channels (email, phone, social). Networks proactively and uses their personal network to build lead volume.
Can build a staff to prospect efficiently and at a higher conversion rate than they otherwise could. Can find unique hidden prospect pools to target. Finds ways to access non-public networks and finds contacts creatively.
Closing
Can write an accurate, compelling proposal deck or document using our established format and template. Can follow up eagerly. Can close a deal with minimal help from senior staff. Can coordinate the writing of a basic estimate for a project, working with an artisan in the relevant department. Can write accurate project paperwork that reflects the project discussed.
Can write an exceptional proposal that eloquently and accurately describes Cantilever’s value. Can create an impressive deck that engages a prospect on a call. Can adjust our strategy to suit different prospects. Can make suggestions about how to implement a different format or template. Can evaluate estimates from artisans with a critical eye and make suggestions.
Has an exceptional closing rate and can use every tool in the book to close projects faster than most. Can write own estimates based on prior projects and confirm them with artisans. Can establish and execute a full closing strategy based on prior experiences.
Management
Can delegate repeatable/procedurized work to Cantilever admin staff to save sales resources.
Can manage the team’s chat and phone on-call hours. Can manage a junior sales person. Can augment our sales processess and philosophy based on experiences.
Can overhaul our sales processes without external input. Can structure and oversee the entire sales organization.
Leadership
Can follow the established sales playbook. Makes proactive suggestions for making things better. Finds opportunities to show leadership qualities in their work.
Is accountable to final results of sales processes, not just executing the gameplan (win or lose). Is responsible for rewriting substantial portions of our sales game plan in collaboration with senior staff. Does not need instructions to perform well. Can work with current and former contacts to stimulate leads.
Takes ultimate responsibility for our success in sales. Job rests on delivering results. Networks closely with our friends and clients to stir up sales. Uses own network to help fill our pipeline. Appears publicly as a face of the organization.
Technical Knowledge
Understands the basic elements of how sites work. Could explain to a new person how HTML, CSS, and Javascript combine to create web pages. Understands how a CMS interacts with frontend code to allow a site to be editable. Understands the basics of performance, SEO and accessibility.
Understands why different frontend methodologies work better for different needs. Understands nuances of why certain CMSes are better for some situations than others.
Understands how code works in the abstract. Can perform basic code exercises on codeacademy/treehouse/et al. Understands the principles behind our development practices.
Design Expertise
Understands the basic rules of visual design: hierarchy, balance, order, etc. Understands basic typographic principles and what makes for "good" typography. Understands the core elements of User Experience (UX) and can pick between very good and very bad user experiences on other sites.
Understands industry design trends and how our work embraces or rejects them. Keeps an eye on design publications and galleries to find opportunities to make Cantilever work more well known. Understands current technology and how it influences possibilities for designers.
Can confidently present the design philosophy of Cantilever and connect it with customer value. Can provide feedback to design team as to trends and opportunities for specific kinds of design within the market.