We checked in with Yakima, Washington-based sales rep Heather Rose about what it’s like to work with Day Wireless Systems customers in the field, and her perspective might make you want to send us your resume.
There is a story about two clowns who worked at a famous toy store. One of them complained about every aspect of his job, he disliked the children’s antics and performed his duties reluctantly. People who met him said, “he’s got the worst job at the company.” The other clown set up all the stuffed animals in a row and read them stories. He played with the toys and encouraged the children to join in. He enjoyed his work, and people who met him said, “he’s got the best job at the company.”
If there’s a metaphor that extends to Day Wireless Systems employees like Heather Rose, Commercial Outside Sales Rep located in Yakima, Washington, it’s likely this one, but it doesn’t just extend to her, or other DWS employees like her. It extends to DWS itself in providing the environment that encourages and enables all employees to have the best job at the company.
Public Safety is Job Satisfaction
Rose joined DWS after working in retail sales and marketing, finding that juggling retail hours with two young kids was a struggle. After an excellent interview with the sales and service teams, and hearing about founder Gordon Day- a hunter like herself, she accepted a position in outside sales for Yakima. Over the years, as she has proved capable, her territory has grown to include most of eastern Washington. Throughout this growth, she’s enjoyed one thing in particular about working with DWS customers.
“I get to step into other people’s worlds. I visit spots no one else gets to see,” said Rose. “Manufacturer lines, elevator closets of hospitals where repeaters are awkwardly kept. I’ve been on rooftops of schools to check antennas. I even got to see how mushrooms are made.”
But when it comes to why her job is important, it hits a little closer to home. “My son is in his first year of kindergarten, and I happen to know they use top of the line Motorola MOTOTRBO XPR 3000 radios, and his school’s buses get great coverage because we just updated their FCC license. I know my child is safe, because together with school we own school safety. It’s a mission.”
Helping to support the safety of Rose’s community, and others, is part of the job that is high on personal satisfaction. But knowing she can help provide safety to hospitals, schools, and first responders is fulfilling because DWS provides the environment she needs to be successful at her job.
A self-identified competitive person, Rose acknowledges she is driven to win the pumpkin carving contest every year. She and her team also won the flower growing contest, earth day planting contest, and the safety contest for the shop, where they won a pack of cool prizes because they celebrate safety when goals are hit. She submitted a helpful colleague for Star of the Day.
Rose also participates in the book club, where assigned reading includes titles about personal growth and career achievement, like 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, Deep Work, and 4,000 Weeks, a book about taking more time off work and enjoying the little things. The club is an example of how employees get training they need to be successful at their job, including support with new technology, which is ever-growing. “The learning is unlimited,” Rose remarked.
Beyond training, Rose feels supported by her team, who celebrate each other. Talking about losses and failures is a learning moment, and employees share key learnings to help improve. “We can always pick up the phone and call others for help,” she said. Although she works in Sales, her local office is a service shop. Still, employee engagement activities allow her to build relationships with both her local team and across the company, like her participation in a daily sales brief, which she joins voluntarily to provide support for newer sales reps. Providing support allows her to give back what she has valued receiving from Day.
Everywhere else Rose has worked has been more “this is your job.” DWS allows more exploration, brainstorming and helping create new services and products opportunities. She feels women are respected at both Day and among her customers. At this point, she has been able to lead the charge in deciding to push new products that make sense for her customers, including a creative, less expensive solution she’s currently working on to interface a school’s MOTOTRBO digital system with the local police department’s analog radio system so they can easily communicate in case of emergency. Creativity and thinking ‘outside the box’ are other skills that are fostered by DWS and help make her successful.
How to Succeed in Sales
There are certain traits that make someone successful in sales, especially at DWS. According to Heather Rose, the most important is self-accountability. In her own experience, she feels the need to do more than anyone else tells her to do, keeping up with her own expectations in her role. Sometimes supervisors will lead her in the right direction for growth, but she will still try to exceed their expectations.
Another trait that helps is her competitive nature. She always has her eye on colleagues’ performance and strives to keep up with them. Keeping herself organized is also beneficial, as well as having a technical aptitude and being willing to learn.
That said, cold calling is a part of the job sales reps cannot escape. “Calling people you’ve never met, you never know what you’re going to get. It was terrible at first,” she admits. “Even if you have something prepared to say, at some point you trip and fall over words, but when that happened, I learned to share a laugh with customers. I found those are actually the sales calls I typically win.” Building rapport with customers makes her job more successful and also more fun.
That said, at DWS, coffee is for closers… and everyone else. If an employee is not thriving in the role they work in, the opportunity exists to migrate to one for which they might be better suited. Rose notes that growth doesn’t have to be linear, Day has a lot of opportunities. Sales Reps can turn into Service Managers, or Service Techs will wind up in Sales. Individual qualities or interests can pave the way for new or “better for you” opportunities. Everyone at DWS has a chance to be successful.
Is Two-Way Radio Sales Equitable?
Although in the past, tech sales–including radio–has been a male-dominated world, Rose has found that is not currently the case. There are a handful of women in Sales working at Day Wireless and they are doing well, as she notes. Women don’t face challenges in her role as long as they have technical acumen, and overall she feels very well supported. It wasn’t too long ago this wasn’t a woman’s field, but it’s getting more normalized. In the Commercial Sales team in particular, women are at the top of the leaderboard, which hasn’t been traditional in the company or industry.
However, “guys are killing it too,” Rose notes.
Time for a Change?
At DWS, we focus more on the aptitude and attitude than exact experience, so if this article has intrigued you, let us know. Perhaps it’s time for Heather Rose to face fresh pumpkin carving talent. If you want to step up to the plate, she’s down for a friendly wager over a Starbucks card.