The Hottest Job in Sales Today

September 16, 2016 Mark Emmons


Some people dream of writing a book. Trish Bertuzzi is not one of them. Becoming an author was not on her bucket list.

“I did not enjoy writing a book, and I’m never doing it again,” said Bertuzzi, laughing. “I’m not your typical author who can’t wait to do a full book tour. That’s just not me.”

Bertuzzi, though, very much had a book inside her. She is the president and chief strategist of The Bridge Group, an inside sales consulting and implementation firm. And Bertuzzi’s friend Jill Konrath, the best-selling writer, had kept prodding her to “own the space” when it comes to sales development.

That meant finally buckling down and publishing “The Sales Development Playbook: Build Repeatable Pipeline and Accelerate Growth with Inside Sales.” While the writing process might not have been easy for Bertuzzi, reading the book is a breeze. Bertuzzi has created an easy-to-follow, hands-on manual for the practitioners who are doing the heavy-lifting on the front lines of modern B2B sales.

image1-1The cover design features the drawing of a cartoon rocket. Bertuzzi believes that if you follow her advice, any sales team can achieve liftoff. She has broken down the book into six sections that reflect what she describes as the crucial elements for sales success: strategy, specialization, recruiting, retention, execution and leadership.

“It’s 100-percent actionable,” said Bertuzzi, who was a featured speaker at the recent Ops-Stars at Dreamforce event. “This is not theory. It is a real playbook. It’s a guide on how to build a team that is stellar. You might already be amazing in four of the six areas, but I’m going to help you with the other two so you can be amazing across the board.”

Bertuzzi relates to the “doers” of the sales world. That’s reflected in the books that she likes. Her personal reading list includes “Predictable Revenue” by Aaron Ross and Marylou Tyler, “Fanatical Prospecting” by Jeb Blount and “New Sales. Simplified.” by Mike Weinberg. She’s also digging into Tyler’s recent book “Predictable Prospecting.”

The common denominators between those and her book, Bertuzzi said, is that they all offer proven advice that sales teams can use every day to hit their numbers.

“There are so many good books out there,” she added. “But I also think there’s a group of authors who take the approach of, ‘Oh I’m writing a business book and it has to be about strategy and theory.’ There are definitely two camps, and I fall into the camp of wanting to share everything I know and hopefully you can take away something that will help your business.”

For her Ops-Stars at Dreamforce session, Bertuzzi is highlighting four ideas from “The Sales Development Playbook:”

  • Answering “The Five Whys” to figure out what strategy to implement
  • How to Win at Recruiting
  • How to Build Career Paths
  • How to Think Differently about Tools and Technology

In the introduction of her book, Bertuzzi writes that sales development is an “overnight sensation” that has been 30 years in the making. Her point is that there’s really nothing new about the specialized role of front-line salespeople who focus on qualifying inbound leads and/or conducting outbound prospecting to generate pipeline.

She added that her first job in business was telemarketing — essentially an early version of sales development. But with the rise of vendors in the SaaS space, the profile of inside sales teams has grown. It’s very similar to what has happened with Account-Based Marketing, she said.

Both are the evolution of old ideas . . . with a big assist from new technology innovation.

“Technology has made it so much easier from the perspective of the salesperson,” Bertuzzi said. “But the flip side is that it has become a nightmare for the buyer. Now we’re killing them with email spam, too much content and useless voicemail. We’re using all these tricks of the trade like local presence phone numbers. The poor buyer is just getting inundated with white noise. But the people who rise above that are the people who win.”

How do you find that balancing act of thoughtfully engaging prospects without overwhelming them?

“Read my book,” Bertuzzi said. “I lay it all out.”



About the Author

Mark Emmons

Mark Emmons is the staff writer at LeanData. He previously was a reporter at the San Jose Mercury News, Orange County Register and Detroit Free Press. He can be reached at

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