How to win friends and influence people

Sometimes I’m in a position to influence decisions. I normally base my opinion on the technical detail of a solution, and how it fits current and future business needs. But recently, I’ve realised how much the approach of the sales team comes in to play.

For example, Pure Storage are a joy to work with. They have a very strong product set which very much fits the needs of the business I currently work at. They’re easy to engage with as a company and an account team. We have approached them previously to ask for a solution to a problem, and they have been honest in excluding themselves from the running as the products they have weren’t a good fit. Wonderful. I believe in credit where it’s due, and am receiving nothing for saying this.

Then comes Rubrik. I have never contacted them. In the past 9 months, they have e-mailed me 18 times. 9 times in the last month alone. They have offered to pay me just to talk to them. That feels shady – Your product should speak for itself. How good is your product if you have to pay people to listen to you?

Sometimes I’m in a position to influence a decision, someimes I’m not If I’m ever in a position to influence vendor selection for any product Rubrik sell, I’ll try my hardest to ensure they’re not in the running. You’re never the only vendor available.