Meet & Greet Roger!
|Department:||RYCO Sales Team|
|Title:||East Coast Sales Manager|
It’s no secret that a business’s success depends on its people. We are super excited to welcome on board a talented East Coast Sales Manager (ECSM) – Roger Stevens to our RYCO Sales Team.
Roger is unique and customer-driven offering a diverse range of skills. To name a few, Roger obtained a postgraduate degree in product development, provided training, and mentorship to various teams, plus let us mention his passion for Martial Arts!
During Stevens’ diverse and advanced career in sales management, he established that innovation, transparency, and strategic planning are paramount for success within the current competitive sales environment.
Being relatively new to RYCO, Stevens has already begun utilising his mentor-leadership expertise and is ready to roll his strategic planning across multiple new RYCO projects. With his strong background in engineering and customer-centric approaches, Stevens strongly believes in teamwork and collaboration.
Whilst Stevens has accomplished big successes during his career with past clients such as Bunnings and Woolworths, he has also experienced challenges that have shaped him professionally. Fast forward to today, Stevens shares his journey as a senior sales professional in more detail.
- What does your day-to-day role at RYCO entail?
I see the ECSM role as a mentor-leadership role supporting both our Business Development Coordinator (BDC) and Business Development Specialist (BDS) teams. While we have responsibilities around business growth and profitability, it’s a well-performing sales team that gets the job done and I am here to both support and enhance that.
- In your opinion, what’s the most exciting aspect of your role?
Being able to train and develop people. I am completely transparent as a sales manager and I believe in training, mentoring, and developing teams to reach their full potential.
- In your opinion, what’s the most challenging aspect of your role?
Maintaining that very consistent approach to sales team management by both aligning & driving top-down strategies. To grow and retain we all need to follow the same strategic plan, not an individual plan. Driving the right Key Performance Indicators (KPI) that align to the overall business strategy can be challenging to get right, but once aligned and transparent, the sales structure can run smoothly.
- Do you believe putting yourself into your customer’s shoes is essential for building relationships?
From my experience yes, businesses today must be customer centric. In today’s world, the most successful companies implement strategic channel partnership programs to engage their customers. Customers no longer want “just” a supplier but rather a strategic partner that they can work closely with, understand their business, needs then partner together for a win-win outcome.
- Do you believe customer-driven innovation is essential for RYCO Research & Development (R&D) to solve technical challenges that our customers may face?
Yes, customer back innovation is the key to both New Product Development (NPD) and success. For so long, businesses have developed new and innovative products for customers, and then those products fail to sell for various reasons, while only a very small percentage of NPD ever sees the light of day. Customer back innovation allows a partisan look at customer needs while developing new and innovative products based on that customer need.
- With your strong background in Engineering and a postgraduate degree within product development, what is your favourite product at RYCO and why?
When it comes to RYCO, I think it is difficult to differentiate a favourite product: We have a DIEHARD™ hose which is outstanding or one-piece couplings which is a great innovation. I think it is the whole package and the way the RYCO products complement each other for quality and reliability.
- With your proven and successful career, do you truly believe that ‘authenticity’ in sales is critical? Why or why not?
Some would say any business can be defined by its entire sales strategy or lack of one. Sales are about brand value proposition and differentiation – not a race to the bottom. The customer is the only winner with a race to the bottom strategy, “but” both the business and the customer can win by a brand and value proposition-driven strategy. There are only three points that can guarantee Sales Authenticity:
- Strategic positioning of your brand,
- The value proposition of the brand and
- The value of the brand to the customer.
It really is about the sales message to the customer and having the entire sales team deliver that same message.
- What’s the most important aspect in Sales vs Customer Relationship Management?
For me, it is project and opportunity pipeline management. This allows a business to plan and forecast operationally based on new business wins and can give the business a clear snapshot of progressive growth based on business won over a 12-month period.
- Do you recall the biggest sale or accomplishment within your career to date?
Apart from many small wins, there are three very distinctive standouts in three very different markets. Bunnings – introducing a new brand name into the Australian market and removing the current brand from the space, the value was $3mil plus revenue. Bombardier – the competitor had the Australian business for 30 years., failed to respond to product failures, left the door open, I took the opportunity to take the business, the value was $1.5mil plus revenue. Woolworths – as a product manager in a new role, I was assigned a project to remove 90% of plastic stretch wrap on pallets within the food and beverage.
- What motivates and inspires you?
I am results and goal-driven and like to work on strategies that help any business succeed. It’s a good feeling when you enjoy your job and can’t wait to get to the office each day and that’s how I feel here at RYCO.
- In your opinion, what qualities should a salesperson’s process succeed?
Must be a hunter that focuses on using product knowledge and product value proposition to win business. Self-motivated with sound key account management skills. I would take an experienced value proposition hunter over a price-driven salesperson every day of the week.
- Briefly describe that ‘one’ situation that shaped you professionally.
Being moved to Sydney for 3 years in a senior manager role with Loctite (Henkel). This was the role I had to learn on the run with the impact of the GFC while merging an acquisition (AKZO) at the same time. This was my first senior role but the education and learning from that role shaped me for several future roles.
- What inspires and motivates you outside of RYCO?
Family, my martial arts, and watching Geelong in the AFL.
- What parts of the RYCO Mission do you connect with the most?
It would have to be RYCO Innovation. It is synergistic between customer back innovation and RYCO’s – overarching We Care, We Listen, We Develop. My firm belief in business is that innovation is the key to growth and differentiation from competitors. Again, it’s the advantage of that value proposition where RYCO can implement and develop a continuous improvement platform with key partners with a distinct clear advantage.
- What kinds of RYCO resources have you taken advantage of?
For someone new to the RYCO Family, the resource I used most is the Product Technical Manual (PTM). It is always at hand’s length and used daily.
Teresa Collins quoted “a successful business requires one simple thing – ‘Passion”. Thus, Stevens’ passion for sales management, mentorship, innovative approach to problem-solving, and knowledge in product development are definite keys to success!
Exciting new projects for Stevens are ahead. And many more successes… welcome aboard!
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