cloudTALKS with Diego: Sales beyond stereotypes
Today, we’re chatting with Diego Diaz, a Spanish expat who has found his calling in sales while living in Prague. From his roots in economics to his global adventures, Diego brings a unique perspective to the sales world as an Account Executive. In this interview, he shares valuable insights and tips, highlighting the significance of authentic connections in Sales.
Unveiling the Path of a Spanish Expat in Prague…
Hey, Diego! Let’s dive right into your journey and experience as one of the first salespeople at CloudTalk. Can you start by telling us a bit about yourself?
Well, my background has been quite a wild ride, to be honest. I initially wanted to study philosophy, but I ended up studying Economics with a focus on Econometrics. I wanted to understand how the world works, the role of money, human behavior, and the reasons behind certain actions.
During my studies, I worked in retail and later in the car industry, but those experiences didn’t align with my values, so I decided to explore opportunities abroad.
Through an Erasmus program, I ended up in Prague, where I volunteered as a Spanish teacher and immersed myself in the local culture.
After returning to Spain and facing challenging job prospects, I decided to travel back to Prague, where I found a sales job, specifically selling computer systems for restaurants. I also had a passion for showing people the hidden gems of Prague through beer tours, and enjoyed the opportunity to connect with fellow Spaniards and Latin Americans.
However, the pandemic severely impacted the tourism industry, and I faced a difficult situation, which inspired me to write a book about my experiences.
That’s quite a journey you’ve been on! Speaking of your book, what’s it all about?
Yeah, it’s called “Diary of an Expat in Prague: The Golem’s Threshold.” It’s a bit of a deep dive into my internal and external conflicts during a time when I felt haunted by the ghosts of my past. I wanted to take readers on an emotional rollercoaster that would resonate with their own experiences. It’s a pretty intense read, but it’s all part of my story.
Driving Growth: Success as an Early Sales Pioneer at CloudTalk…
Let’s talk about your role at CloudTalk. Being one of the first salespeople at the company must have been quite an adventure. Can you give us some insights into your responsibilities?
When I joined CloudTalk, I started as an SDR, taking care of demos, negotiations, and even handling customer support issues. I was hustling like crazy, putting in around 14 to 15 hours a day. But hey, hard work pays off, right?
After proving myself, I moved up to become an Account Executive, focusing on the Latin American market. That was a big step for me, and I actually closed some pretty sweet deals through my efforts.
Closing deals like that is no small feat. Apart from those impressive milestones, what would you say is your proudest accomplishment during your time at CloudTalk?
Closing the deal with Nokia. That was a huge win for our team. I mean, landing a client like Nokia, a big player in the industry, was a major achievement. It really showed me that we were making waves and gaining recognition. But I think our biggest accomplishment will be when CloudTalk lands Series B funding. That’s going to be a moment of celebration and a testament to all the hard work and dedication we’ve all poured into building this company.
What keeps you motivated to do what you do here?
Well, professionally, it’s that sense of accomplishment and being part of something bigger than myself. Since our expansion to LATAM, I’ve had the privilege of witnessing the progress we’ve made as a company. Going through the failures, overcoming challenges, and celebrating our successes — it’s all been part of an incredible journey, and I’m proud to have been a part of it.
But on a personal level, it’s the people at CloudTalk who truly inspire me. I’ve formed genuine connections with many of my colleagues. Of course, you can’t get along with everyone all the time, but I’ve made some strong friendships here. And you know what? Even if I were to leave CloudTalk one day, I know those friendships will continue. That’s something I really cherish.
The essential skills for sales professionals…
Let’s talk about some of the essential skills for sales professionals. What do you think are the most important skills for success in sales?
Patience is key. You’ve got to be patient with people, especially when clients push your buttons. It’s important to know when to draw boundaries and maintain your cool. And remember, you’re the face of the company, so professionalism is crucial.
Next up, organization. Sales can be chaotic with loads of information flying around. You’ve got to stay organized. Juggling multiple conversations, keeping track of deadlines—it’s like being a master multitasker.
And let’s not forget prioritization. Not all leads or opportunities are worth chasing. You’ve got to know which ones are worth your time and energy. Otherwise, you’ll end up wasting precious hours with no results to show for it.
Oh, and ambition! You’ve got to have that fire in your belly, always pushing yourself to excel. But remember to set realistic goals and collaborate with your team to find the best solutions for your clients. You don’t have to go it alone. You need to have your team by your side throughout the entire process.
And here’s the secret sauce: never forget that you’re dealing with real people. On the other side of the conversation is not just a client — it’s a human being. Sales is about connecting with them on a human level. Be communicative, be understanding, and show some empathy.
I love how you emphasize the human connection aspect of sales.
Yes, forget about those sales stereotypes. Sales is not just about numbers and transactions; it’s about building authentic connections, understanding different cultures and making a positive impact. When you focus on these aspects, success will naturally follow.
Wisdom for Taking Chances and Moving Forward…
Before we wrap up, is there any final advice or words of wisdom you’d like to share?
I follow advice that comes from my parents. My father always told me: regret what you do, not what you don’t. Take chances, chase your goals, and don’t hold back.
My mother’s words stick with me too: “The horse that doesn’t run has the race within itself.” Break free from any constraints and unleash your true potential. Don’t be afraid to take risks, try new things, and step outside of your comfort zone.
And if there’s one thing I’ve learned throughout my journey, it’s that you should not give the same advice more than twice. If someone doesn’t appreciate genuine advice you’ve given them, it’s best to move on. Don’t waste your energy on those who don’t respect your time.