The world of sales is an ever-changing industry at the best of times. Forecasting, analyzing and exploring new trends is a key part of any sales role, but throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, we have seen things change at a never-before-seen pace. One sales expert has taken the events of the last year and compiled it into a new book, sharing how we can turn a disastrous year into lessons and strategies.
Cherilynn Castleman, managing partner and executive coach at CGI is a sales coach and internationally renowned sales expert. She also currently serves as the chief learning officer for Sistas In Sales, the first national organization that serves women of color in professional sales careers. Specializing in teaching clients how to develop effective growth strategies and market models to increase productivity and revenue, the Minnesota born professional has more than 20 years of enterprise C-level selling and relationship experience. The purpose of her training is to equip professionals and small business leaders to solve tough sales, while also teaching them about leadership and culture challenges.
Castleman initially started out in a career in social work, but quickly realized that she needed sales skills to secure program funding. To refine her skills, she took a job selling life insurance door-to-door and quickly realized she had a real talent. Her success in the sales space snowballed and created numerous opportunities for advancement, eventually progressing to sales manager, vice president and general manager. In her general manager role, she oversaw profit-and-loss responsibilities and closed multi-million dollar deals in Asia, Central and South America, Europe and the United States. She has helped Fortune 500 clients scale to over $240 million in revenue as a global sales executive, and worked with clients including Johnson & Johnson, Salesforce, Pinterest, T-Mobile and LinkedIn.
Now living in Washington, D.C, Castleman can be found cycling, kayaking, practicing yoga, and spending time with her two adult daughters and their families in her spare time. One of her most recent bonding activities with her daughter, Jalynn Castleman-Smith, was writing her book "What's in the C.A.R.D.S.?: 5 Post-Pandemic Sales Strategies". We may be turning a corner in regards to the pandemic, but as the economy continues to recover from a global recession, modern consumers have come to expect more out of their salespeople.
Castleman's forthcoming book aims to break down the lessons that have come out of the last year, highlighting that in 2021 and beyond, leading sales with empathy is key. At the core of the book's lessons are five crucial competencies that salespeople need to leverage lived experiences and "everyday superpowers to create authentic connections, strengthen client relationships and drive exponential revenue growth".
The book has been praised by sales experts and CEOs alike for its innovative, memorable and masterful approach to sales. CEO of Urban Affairs Coalition Sharmain Matlock-Turner praised the book for its "simple yet powerful, hands-on techniques coupled with easy to remember lessons", also excelling at reminding readers of the importance of "winning the hearts and minds of your clients". Fortune 100 global speaker Christopher Kai described Castleman as a "true jedi master at sales strategy", while Enterprise Cloud executive advisor Kuran Williams highlighted that the book is "relevant not just to sales professionals but to anyone who needs the keys to success".
Essentially, "What's in the C.A.R.D.S.?" is about adaptability, flexibility and versatility, and "taking the sour lemons of 2020 and turning them into the best lemonade 2021 has to offer". No matter what background readers are from, what challenges they may have faced or any obstacles, Castleman's book intends to be a one-stop-shop for anyone who has lived experiences that they can channel into success. Contrary to popular belief, she argues that episodes of adversity and loss are not liabilities or permanent setbacks, but rather powerful assets to be utilized for unrivalled sales success.
"What's in the C.A.R.D.S.?: 5 Post-Pandemic Sales Strategies", is due to be published February 18 2021.