01 May 2020 | 10.55 am
Interview: Ronan Lundy, Quantcast
Being authentic is an important trait for a business leader
01 May 2020 | 10.55 am
Ronan Lundy tells Conor Morris that it’s important for the sales boss in the organisation to be as accountable as the sales executives
Quantcast operates the world’s largest AI-driven audience behaviour platform that underpins audience insights, targeting and measurement solutions for marketers, agencies, consultancies and publishers. Ronan Lundy is its head of corporate sales EMEA.
What was your first job?
Advertising sales at the Golden Pages. At the time, Golden Pages had a reputation as one of the best sales training organisations in the country, and it was a great place to learn the necessary skills for a successful sales career.
How do you motivate yourself and your team?
I’m a big believer in building high-performance sales teams, and to do so I look to set a clear, ambitious vision and goal that the team can get behind. It’s important to create a culture of accountability, allow for autonomy, and generally remove obstacles for the team. I’m just as accountable to the team as they are to me, and I believe when you genuinely uphold this standard your team will be right behind you.
From your experience, what are the traits common to top performing sales people?
They have very clear metrics against which they measure their personal success, as well as metrics to perform consistently against their goals. I always look for a great attitude and work ethic and somebody who is resilient, as things aren’t always going to go your way.
You have to have the ability to build great relationships with clients by understanding their business and showing a genuine interest in helping them. The easiest business you’ll ever get is from client referrals, and the best sales people I know are great at doing this.
How would your colleagues describe your leadership style?
Great question, and one that I’ve asked my colleagues! A previous manager from my time in Telefonica O2 told me that I’m authentic, and I believe that’s an extremely important trait for any business leader. People hardly ever have a job for life these days, so it’s important to me that people see me as someone they can trust.
What is the best leadership advice you have received?
I was advised early in my career to seek out mentors. No matter how you’re performing in your role, everybody has blind spots. Seeking out mentors that have experiences that complement yours can really help you identify areas of improvement.
What is your favourite business motto?
“Keep it simple.” Working in the tech industry, it’s very easy to over-complicate things, which makes your solution sound difficult to work with. Ultimately we’re all selling solutions that can improve a client’s situation. So keep it simple, show them how your solution can get them to their desired state, and bring them on that journey.
What business leader would you like on your management team for a day?
At the moment I really enjoy listening to Gary Vaynerchuk. He’s very straight talking and I really appreciate his genuine style of leadership. Outside of this, I’m a big Liverpool fan so I would love to get Jurgen Klopp in the room too.
What leadership book would you recommend?
I really enjoyed The Hard Thing About Hard Things by Ben Horowitz. Whether you’re a leader in a new startup, a company with high growth goals, or an entrepreneur, this book gives a great insight into the challenges ahead and solid advice on how to deal with them.
As a senior business leader, why are you a member of The Executive Institute?
I’m a big fan of the institute. The speakers at events are of an excellent calibre and always bring new insights that I can apply to my day-to-day role. They also bring together some very interesting leaders from other businesses, making it a valuable networking platform.
• Conor Morris is Managing Director of the Executive Institute