“I’ve seen people go in to pre-sales leadership because they want to make more money and that is the worst reason to become a Sales Engineering Leader of any sort. If you’re just doing it to make another small bump in OTE, it’ll crush you. You’re no longer just dealing with your prospects, your sales team, and your sales assignment, but all sorts of other people’s dynamics and guiding people to be successful in that role.” – Mike Lupiani
In the Presales Edition of The 33 CXOs we explore the crucial role of the presales organisation in what is regarded as the greatest success story in software sales.
When John McMahon took over as the Head of Sales within BladeLogic, he had a clear vision to create a sales and presales organisation that was in complete unison. What transpired became a sales rhythm which remains the golden standard for best practice within the most successful technology companies in the world.
The effects of a value-driven, technical sales function transcended the boundaries of presales. The playbook has helped trailblaze best practice within Customer Success, Value Engineering, Professional Services and even Product Management.
We uncover the stories and playbooks of the most talented technical sales leaders in the industry who are driving the technology companies of the future.
Episode 6 features Mike Lupiani, Director of Enterprise Sales Engineering at Sumo Logic. After spending his childhood learning about technology and helping customers with their IT problems at his family’s computer businesses in New York, Mike began his professional career in technology as a Senior Consultant at IBM. After honing his business skills and gaining insight into large company operations, Mike was sought out by the industry pioneers at BladeLogic and transitioned to become a member of their “well-oiled” pre-sales machine in 2007. With the knowledge and experience required to withstand the BMC acquisition, and subsequently thrive in a growing organisation, Mike’s career took an upward trajectory. He left BMC as a Principal Software Consultant in 2015 and joined Sumo Logic to fulfil his aspirations to build teams of his own and become the diverse and talented leader he is today.
“One of the things that I learned very early was, if there’s a job that needs to be done to make the POC successful, to make the demo work, to make the product better, and you sit around and wait for somebody else to do it, you might not win. You’re not going to get where you need to go if you rely on somebody else for aspects that are within your control.”
During his time at BladeLogic and BMC, Mike discovered the methodologies and processes that he needed to succeed in a hugely competitive industry. With John McMahon at the helm, he learnt how to sell value to customers and become an all-purpose technical solution to problems in an environment that was innovating at lightning speed. Mike’s unique combination of skills and hands-on experience have allowed him to transition through the ranks and become a mentor who leads from a position of credibility.
“First you had to be able to explain the product, then you needed to be able to demonstrate it, then you needed to be able to prove that it worked to the customer. I’ve seen people try to teach others how to do something that they haven’t done enough of themselves and it never clicks the same as talking to somebody that you know has truly done it already and is speaking from their experience.”
In this vodcast you will discover:
- The raw materials needed to make a great presales engineer
- What key skills are required to move into management from a presales position
- How MEDDIC can help you develop your skills and move up the career ladder
- The future of presales – Mike’s playbook and advice for anyone considering a career in this industry
Mike Lupiani’s career sets the precedent for a new generation of presales engineers. His accomplishments in this industry are a testament to his work ethic, technical expertise and ability to evolve to meet clients’ ever-changing needs. We discuss his experiences in different roles at BladeLogic, BMC and Sumo Logic and ask him what technology or area of innovation he thinks will have the biggest impact on business over the next decade. This extensive discussion is essential listening for those with an interest in sales strategy, as well as anyone with a passion for the technology space.