TALKING SALES 8: "Salespeople need to be entrepreneurial" - Bernadette McClelland

John Smibert


In this 4 minute video interview Bernadette McClellandis asked by John Smibert why salespeople need to be entrepreneurial and how they should go about being so.

Her answer is enlightening. Read or view the interview below.

Bernadette is a sales leadership expert, she helps bridge corporate goals with revenue potential. She's a leading author and an international keynote speaker.

See more of the 'TALKING SALES' series here


John: Hello and welcome back! Today I'm delighted to have with me - Bernadette McClelland. Bernadette is a sales leadership expert, she helps bridge corporate goals with revenue potential. She's a leading author and an international keynote speaker. Welcome, Bernadette!

Bernadette: Thank you very much, John!

John: Bernadette, I've been reading a lot of your writings and I love what you write!

Bernadette: Thank you!

John: One of the things I was really interested in is that you indicated that salespeople now need to be much more entrepreneurial. Can we talk about that? What do you mean by that?

Bernadette: I agree, they do. Somebody said to me once "You have got to be a better marketer of what you do - than doer of what you do." Now, that doesn't mean to say that you don't have to be good, but it certainly means that you have to put yourself out there. Salespeople today, in my opinion, need to up the ante as far as their approach to their buyers.

John: So, you're talking about marketing themselves.

Bernadette: Absolutely. So, salespeople today are the differentiating factor. I mean, all our products are pretty much the same, and so what we need to do is - we can't afford for us to continue to go to the buyer with product - we have to create an environment where the buyer is attracted to us.

John: Because we're a domain expert?

Bernadette: Absolutely. We have to be known for what we know, and so salespeople today - it doesn't matter what industry they're in - they need to be viewed as an expert in that industry. So, what I think salespeople need to do in order to go to that next step is they need to do a couple of things differently: they need to learn how to speak, they need to learn how to present, they need to learn how to write - so that they can capture the opportunity in the platforms that social allows them to do.

John: They wouldn't be writing about product.

Bernadette: No. What they really need to be writing about - it comes down to what is their intention as salespeople. So all of us, our intention should be to help our client grow their business.

John: So it needs to be something of value to the client around their business.

Bernadette: Totally, absolutely. Definitely.

John: To me that sounds like personal branding - what I call personal branding.

Bernadette: It's all part of it. Let's face it, we live in a voyeuristic society at the moment and 'google' is a verb, so it doesn't take much for all of us to actually kind of 'suss' people out online these days. So, what would your profile say about you if a potential buyer was to look you up? So yes, personal branding is all wrapped up in that whole entrepreneurial approach to the market.

John: So, if I was to sum up what we're talking about: a salesperson needs to be entrepreneurial, and by that I guess we're saying they need to be innovative in the way they work with customers, in the way they create value for customers in the context of the customer's thinking. And on top of that, they need to be able to portray themselves out to the marketplace as somebody that does bring value, somebody that is a domain expert and is worth talking with - if I'm a customer.

Bernadette: Correct. Absolutely, absolutely. It's putting yourselves out there, it's different today than what it's been like in the past.

John: Sounds like great advice. I'm looking to hear more about that when we next get together.

Bernadette: Great, looking forward to it too!

John: Thanks, Bernadette!

Bernadette: Cheers!


See more of the 'TALKING SALES' series here

Not a member? SUBSCRIBE HERE



Your Invitation: I invite you to join the Sales Leader Forum group on LinkedIn where you can experience informative discussions with your peers and sales thought leaders on subjects like the one we have discussed here. I also invite you to subscribe to the

   - Sales Leader Resource Centre here

   - Sales Leader YouTube channel here (300+ sales leadership videos)

Please Share: If you valued this article, please share via your Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+ and Facebook social media platforms. I encourage you to join the conversation or ask questions. So feel free to add a comment on this post - I promise to respond. If inclined please follow my LinkedIn post page here.

Want to touch base? If you have questions please feel free to contact me - email: john.smibert(at), Phone: +61 404857893 or Skype: john.smibert

Your B2B Sales Library

Need resources to help you sell or manage more effectively?

Ever wished you could find a wide range of B2B sales Resources in one library?

Check out the library here

It's packed with articles, videos, keynote speeches, Tools, templates, training materials, eBooks and eGuides.‚Äč

Subscribe to the Library Here


European Peer Group Chair Wanted

We have a number of new enquiries from sales leaders based in the UK, Europe and South Africa who are looking to join a peer group.

We need a Chair to facilitate this new on-line group. This is a valuable role that will be rewarded.

If interested read "Is a Forum Role for you?" and if the answer is "yes" please Contact Us


A Sales Leader Forum provides you with the opportunity to connect with your peers and create a support network of like-minded individuals to learn how they have dealt with the same challenges, issues and problems that you’re facing.



1000's of sales articles, videos and sales tools.  Sales leaders and their teams can access most of it free - simply subscribe.

This site brings you some of the latest expert thought leadership content on business to business (B2B) sales from specialists, sales leaders and sales professionals.