This month we spoke with Trey Sparks, long-time member of SVG, salesman at heart, and staunch opponent of feature puking.
Let’s go back to the beginning, how did you find yourself at Spring Venture Group?
Well, before SVG I was selling mortgages, which I’d been doing for years. I found out about what Jeffery Anderson and some others were up to, so I sent over my resume. At that point there were six or so of us in a very small office on 75th and Windsor. I’ve been with SVG for slightly under five years and we are now over 100 employees. It’s really amazing to think about.
You’ve recently gone from selling to managing. What was that transition like?
You know, the camaraderie here is so strong that sometimes there is fine line between managing and being a friend. However, that camaraderie brings with it a level of respect. A huge part of SVG’s culture is how close-knit everyone is, and I love that. I’ve always been someone who shows up early in the morning and just gets the job done. People knew me as that guy before I became a manager and they see me as that guy now.
From a purely sales perspective, what kind of qualities do you see in people that find success here?
It is often overused, but I really believe the phrase “work smarter, not harder” is important. Honestly, it’s all about getting out of your own way and letting the knowledge you’ve acquired only come out when it becomes necessary. Our agents are all industry experts and it is very easy for others to get into what I call feature-puking.
Basically feature-puking is when an agent starts going off on unnecessary tangents and before they know it, the person on the other end is hanging up the phone. You can’t overcomplicate things. Accept that one-word answers can be okay sometimes.
How do you view failure? Is there one specific way you like to deal with it on your teams?
Failure is a learning process, but we really try to catch people before they head into a slump. It’s easy to lose track of the fact that sales is not overcoming objections, but rather laying the foundation for the sale from the beginning. Usually a quick reminder of that is all it takes to get someone back on track. One big thing we do is listen to calls. Not only does it help to hear your own calls, but it is often even more important to listen to other agents’ calls.