I recently joined AlphaSights as an experienced hire, with a little less than eight years of direct sales experience. I came from a firm where the average age of the field sales organization was over 40. Tenure was everything at my previous company. Most of my colleagues had been with the firm for at least 15 years, many for over 25. It was a fantastic learning experience, and I was really lucky; I learned the tricks of the trade from salespeople that had been selling since before laptops and cellphones.
But my first few weeks at AlphaSights were intimidating. For one thing, it intimidated me how well our Analysts communicated with advisors and clients on the phone. Here were college graduates, less than a year out of school, that excelled almost immediately at speaking on the phone with business leaders from some of the most successful firms in the world. It took me years - yes, years - to get comfortable with speaking to clients! Second, I was struck by how in-sync team members were, and the constant learning shared between all levels in the organization. It became quite clear to me how the unique culture at AlphaSights had led the firm to achieve a 3-Year CAGR of 140% and recognition on The Sunday Times Fast Track 100 two years in a row. So here’s the secret sauce:
(1) Create a culture of Empowerment
Every single person I have met at AlphaSights is not only naturally driven to succeed, but they are provided with the power to make a difference in whatever way they like. Smart, driven and creative people thrive in this environment. It’s sink or swim, but because AlphaSights specifically screens for cultural fit in their hiring process, you’re likely to swim to huge success. I know I can succeed here because I know my team has the confidence that I can succeed.
(2) Create a culture of Learning, Mentoring and Coaching
Success at AlphaSights is not achieved individually. Teams succeed because its members and leaders share best practices, devote time to continuous improvement and provide constructive feedback and support to one another. During my first month at AlphaSights, my manager provided me with the best feedback I had received to date in my career.
This ultimately boils down to something very simple – hire the right individuals to match your firm’s culture and provide your employees with the right environment to succeed. Company culture doesn’t just make your employees feel warm and fuzzy; it translates directly to the bottom line. I’m not surprised AlphaSights, the last entrant in the Expert Network Services industry, has captured market share to become the #2 player in less than six years. I’m just incredibly lucky to have joined this team.