Written by Matt Caprioli, Content Marketing Associate

For the last seven months, Alexander Pook has been the fearless leader of the German sales team. 

In this interview, we asked him what he liked about eZ, what the best sales advice he ever heard was, and found out that his 5 year old has put an end to his triathlon days (he's more than okay with that). 

Can you give a brief overview of your professional background?

After I studied Tourism in Paderborn, Germany, I started my career working in a hotel as a sales representative for meetings, conferences and framework contracts. After a short period I discovered the fact that I felt very comfortable in Sales and in the software I was using, so I applied as an Area Sales Manager for that specific software vendor.

After a couple of years I had my experience extended both in selling small solutions with easy and fast sales cycles, and selling complex software solutions by approaching even C-Level decision makers with a long sales cycle. My last position as a Key Account Manager included leading a small team of professionals with activities in marketing, customer care, solution designing and pre-sales.

What drew you to study tourism at the graduate level?

In school I was told to study economics, that would be necessary to be successful. I always loved to know as much as I possibly can about countries, mountains, oceans, development of cities and rural areas, and much more. Later I was more interested why Davos (Switzerland) and Aspen (Colorado) are brands, but other destinations are not. What did they do better?

What is the best piece of sales advice you’ve ever heard?

If you do not know what the customer thinks, go ahead and ask them.

What are some of the best business books you’ve read?

The Challenger Sale and Whale Done.

In the seven months that you’ve been with eZ, what do you like about it?

Both eZ colleagues, who are very open-minded, spontaneous, helpful, and friendly, and customers, who love our solutions and want to go forward with us.

What are some activities you do each day?

Checking correspondence with colleagues and customers, doing research, approaching potential new customers, synchronizing with my team members, and planning next steps with partners.

What’s the best and worst thing about Cologne?

Best thing: It is an open-minded, friendly and (partly) beautiful city. Worst thing: Traffic jams all day long. Everyone on the road is stressed and in a hurry.

What are big projects you’re currently working on?

We will check with Borussia Dortmund, how they could possibly implement an in-venue solution in their very own stadium.

Furthermore there are a lot of interesting things going on, there are a lot of agencies knocking on our door and asking for a potential partnership. We have a good momentum right now, I am very optimistic.

What was the most challenging sale that you completed? At eZ or a previous company.

When I was Key Account Manager at a global leader in technology-based training I approached a Satellite Services Provider in Luxembourg. They wanted to establish an e-learning portal for internal training, but they never let me know why they needed this, how they wanted to use this, who should attend which training and what would happen, if they could not implement this portal. They left me completely in the dark with the details of the project. Finally they bought the solution, and I still have no clue why.

What do you like about leading a sales team? What are the challenges?

As the Sales Team Leader you are on top of almost every activity. Partners, prospects, customers, marketing. You have to know everything. At the same time I can share my experience to others, make them understand the motivations of a decision-maker, the routine of a buying process, different shades of negotiations, as well as the concerns of various job roles.

I saw on LinkedIn you participated in triathlons in college. Do you still participate in triathlons?

No, I had more time in those days. Now my son is almost 5 years old and wants (and gets) almost all my spare time. If there is time for sports, I love mountain biking, trail running and fitness training.

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