Career Safari Blog
The Phoenix: A Story of Sales and Success
Updated: Aug 29, 2021
Torchbearer: Chiraz Bensemmane. Algerian-French.
“What’s the worst-case scenario? You fail and move forward. That’s it. You need to learn how to be born from your ashes and just keep on going, growing and being better.” says Chiraz who went from employee to entrepreneur, doing what she loves, dominating in international sales.
This is her journey, in her own words….
Dad, Planes and Contracts
When I was a kid, my dad was a CEO of a big public company and he used to travel a lot - I wanted be like my dad. I wanted to take planes and sign contracts. When I finally started my first job, that's what I was doing, taking planes, going from different countries and signing contracts.
I started quite young, at 21, straight out of university. I had my first dream job. I was a Project Director for a company called Focus Reports. This is how I got into sales and international business. I was doing country reports on healthcare, oil and gas. I loved this job because it allowed me to travel and sell to C-level executives. Imagine being 21 and meeting guys who were like 50 and 55 and telling them, ‘yeah, you should buy this.’
The Sexy Side of Sales
We are all sales people.
When people see sales, they just see a person negotiating numbers. Sales is more about researching so that you get to know the markets, companies and the people.
You get to profile people and understand them and how to communicate with them. Especially when you're on an international level, you get to learn about the culture of the person - What are the protocols? What language to use? You have to learn about their body language. You have to put them at ease. It takes a lot of negotiation and people skills. It's more about the human connection. This is all what sales is really about for me.
Sales is like a cross industry because the idea is that like you are selling an idea. Even politicians are sales people.
From Employee to Entrepreneur
I see with everything that I've accumulated as experience as an added value that I can bring.
I started thinking about starting my own business when I was in South Africa having this meeting. I was meeting with a country manager of this company and he offered me a job. Obviously when you meet general managers and you're doing your job well – a lot of them actually offer you a job. I was getting other offers and it was very flattering, but I didn’t see myself working for them. I saw them more as partners to share my experience with. And I'm like, well the only way that I can be their partner would be if I have my own company where I could actually help them - That's how I thought of the first company, Pitch World Fast.
I sent out an email someone I knew at Chamber of Commerce, asking him if small businesses would be interested in my idea and he said yes. I'm like , ‘okay - let's do it!’ I was 25.
I didn't have kids. I wasn't married. This is the best time to do it. When you have no complete responsibility, or at least I'm free enough that even if I fall, I'm falling alone, I'm not taking my whole family with me.
Pitch World Fast and Coach Tribe
Now I have two businesses.
I still have Pitch World Fast and we do business development and project management. What we do is we help our clients grow and we focus mostly on sales and business development - get them out of their comfort zone. Usually growing means going to different markets, going internation
Coach Tribe is actually Pitch World Fast's baby to an extent. I was looking for a coach for Pitch World Fast and I couldn't find a platform to find a coach that I could trust. I started Coach Tribe as this all-in-one coaching platform. The idea is that you come on the platform, you find any coach that you're looking for that can coach you in business, career, life, personal or professional development. Whatever you want. And they can coach you in any language you feel comfortable in. The only thing you need to focus on is what do I want or where do I want to grow and how do I want to grow. Everything is handled by the platform. And it’s not just a platform, it’s a community of coaches and we support each other.
Don’t Just Find the Problem
Einstein said if you keep on doing the same thing the same way and expect a different result, that’s insanity. Do you want to maybe broaden you horizon? That’s obviously scary because it would mean that you will have to try something you haven't tried before. You will have to do things in ways that you're not used to do but what would be the worst-case scenario?
Be resourceful and find solutions because if you focus on the problem, you’re only actually going to see the problem.
Take a step back, even if it seems to be counterproductive. When you actually relax and just think about something else, it gives you this perspective that you need.
Enjoyed Chriaz's journey? Then let us know! Here are other inspiring moments you can enjoy.
Listen to Chriaz's Career Safari Podcast Episode HERE
Read: "The Resilient Adventurer" - You have the power within you to create the life that you want – to be able to redefine and evolve in your career journey.