Our CEO Dave Elkington has possibly the most interesting LinkedIn blog in the world of B2B sales. That’s because he dedicates the space not to promoting his own ideas, but promoting the ideas of other leaders in the space.
In it, Dave chats with Greg Meehan, VP of sales at Edwards Lifesciences. They discuss Greg’s belief that the key to success in sales management is about 30% vision and 70% execution. As Dave drills down on that concept, he uncovers the fact that Greg started his professional career as a wide receiver in the NFL — possibly the most execution-intensive profession one can have.
At one point in the interview, Greg referenced Bill Belichick, head coach for the New England Patriots, and how Belichick holds doing one’s job with excellence as the highest standard of team membership and the formation of an enduring legacy.
Something that didn’t make it into the final draft of the interview is the fact that Greg’s final pro game was against the Patriots.
Here’s how he described it, and what it taught him:
“The last game that I played in was [at the Patriots’ stadium in] Foxborough, Massachusetts. That was the last game I played in my final year. The last pre-season game was against the Patriots and I got cut two days after that. I remember Foxborough well, looking there and say, ‘This is it.’ I’m looking around. It was between me and one other player and looking around and said, ‘Hey, this may be the last stadium I ever step in,’ before the game started. Sure enough it was.
“I was born in this air force base in Massachusetts, although I was a Bengals player at the time, I’m a Patriots fan. You look at what Belichick has done. One of the themes that I use here is building our dynasty at Edwards. Building a dynasty is not just one and done. It’s that the mark of a true professional is consistency that a team and individual performs at a very high level for an extended period of time. That is what a true professional does. Not this purpose thing or fact that it’s a good year, or bad year. What we really want to look at over the course of your career, were you on a trajectory of growth and providing greater value to your providers and the patients they serve? That’s what it looks like year after year if you’re delivering results through personal accountability.
“The thing about sales, we can be very objective. I think in any organization, the highest levels of the organization, that you need to have a vision or a credo. Why are we here? That’s our purpose. At Edwards, it’s the Edwards credo. We’re about serving the patients. It starts there, that’s our purpose.”
Check out Dave’s full post to learn more about Greg Meehan and his execution orientation to achieving success in sales management.