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In the five and a half years I’ve been at Mews, so much has changed. But the most rapid growth has come over the last year, and with hugely ambitious plans in place for 2023, Mews is only going to get bigger and better.
Of the many open job roles, a Sales Director for the DACH region is one, and I’m pretty well qualified to tell you a bit more about what the role will entail and the kind of person it requires. How so? I’m also a Sales Director in the DACH region, and we’re looking for another me to ramp up our expansion into Germany, Austria and Switzerland.
Let me tell you more.
You don’t have to be from hospitality
Before joining Mews, I worked at Marriot International and, latterly, as a Global Sales Manager for Generator Hostels. In a conversation with Matt, Mews’ CEO, he asked me a very simple question: what's the difference between selling hostels and selling software? Actually, there’s no real difference, other than there's a physical product and then there's a digital product.
Yes, my time working in hospitality gave me first-hand experience of the challenges that hoteliers go through with the software. But to Matt’s point, it’s the other abilities (communication, organization) that will ultimately make someone a success in this role.
It would be particularly interesting to hear from people in the wider tourism industry, people who aren’t necessarily hotel experts so will look at things from different angles. We do consultative sales and it’s a team effort – I don’t sit here and solution everything by yourself. As a random example, I can see how a salesperson from travel insurance would be able to jump in and convey our message perfectly.
What does a Sales Director at Mews do?
The million-dollar question (and no, unfortunately the salary is not a million dollars). They lead the commercial efforts within a particular region (in this case, DACH), ensuring that Mews has a good market presence while seeking out hoteliers and convincing them of the benefits of our platform.
Your day should be full of revenue generating activities. Maybe you jump on a discovery call with a prospect and figure out their pain points and brand objectives. Then you have a deep dive with Mews solutions architects to map out what solutions are best for this particular prospect.
And everything should be documented so we can easily track and understand the journey with this prospect, so you need to be self-sufficient when it comes to admin and organization. Then it’s on to a price negotiating or prepping for an industry event or trade show where you have to represent Mews.
We have a dedicated BD (Business Development) team whose focus is on outreach – contacting leads who have shown an interest in our marketing, for example. So although I still do some of that as a Sales Director, it’s more about building relationships over time, particularly with multi-property and mid-market brands. Pitching to these kind of brands is really exciting, convincing C-suites to embrace this new mindset that Mews brings.
Patience is a virtue – as it good people management
Depending on the size of the brand (independent hotels move a lot quicker, mid-market multi-property chains less so), the sales cycle is probably anywhere between six to 12 months. That’s if it's warm. If it's cold, it can be years.
So you need to be able to engage multiple stakeholders. An IT and Security Director might come to you with financial or technical platform questions and you need to be able to answer them. A Revenue Manager might have revenue related questions. You need to be able to identify who the right stakeholders are so people skills are really important.
Also, clarity of communication and the ability to get people excited. Some of the places that Mews wants to go, we don’t quite have that functionality yet, so it’s about selling the dream of the (near) future. Even internally, you might need to get development teams to agree on certain developments because they’ll be great for the business. I think is the hardest part to overcome.
Who are the customers we’re talking to?
We have a certain ideal customer profile (ICP) and it's worth noting that the more we scale and the bigger brands we target, the more complicated the workflows get and harder (and longer) it can take to convert deals. Germany is a huge market for Mews and over the past few years our market share has been growing, opening up more opportunities – but there's so much to explore here still.
Our ICP sits within the economy and mid-scale segment right in mid-market. That means anything from 3-4 properties up and the DACH market has plenty of opportunities within the segment of family-owned groups and chains. These are brands that we can 100% serve today. Where it gets more complicated is when you go into full-service environments, like five star resorts – there are early adopters that you would target there, but definitely not the full mainstream market.
Work from where you want
As this specific Sales Director role is for the DACH region, we’d like the person to live and work in Germany, Austria or Switzerland. But we’re a remote-friendly company so you can work from home or a shared office – your choice.
It’s important (and just easier for the individual) if you can jump into a car or hop onto a train or plane to visit a prospect or a show. You can be more spontaneous with your agenda.
The character traits of a great Mews Sales Director
Motivation trumps all. Motivation to change the mindset of what can be a very traditional industry and really show them what Mews can do for them. That sort of drive is the most important thing.
Also, somebody who can converse easily with people across different hierarchies. Being able to have conversations with any sort of stakeholder, whether it’s a more introverted IT guy or an gregarious General Manager. You have to be outgoing with a lot of self-control too, because sometimes you can feel like you’re being attached when you’re pitching to sceptical hoteliers. There can be a lot of resistance. You need to be prepared for these situations where you just sit there and present confidence.
Finally – and this is true of any role at Mews – you have to be ready for a challenge. It’s obvious but it’s true. I think people sometimes underestimate how complex our product is. For instance, somebody in another hospitality vertical might be used to being an expert in one particular area, whether that’s door locks, F&B management or whatever. At Mews, it’s an entire tech ecosystem.
We have payments, guest-facing features like online check-in and booking engine, an F&B module, an app, reservation and revenue management, Open API... There’s a lot.
It’s a really exciting time to join Mews
2023 will see Mews grow faster than ever before, partly thanks to the $185m dollars raised in Series C funding. And for the DACH region specifically, the opportunities are clear.
We’ve already invested a lot of time and effort in educating the market. It’s taken a long time for people to accept that cloud technology is not only secure but also a practical and reliable way to run a business. And now payment automation is moving into the mainstream as well, it’s really the perfect time to attack the market.
Think you’d be a great fit at Mews? Check out the job description for our DACH Sales Director role.
Antonia has been in hospitality her entire career. She began in the front office of a Marriott before moving to sales for Generator Hostels, where she met Mews and moved over to become our Sales Director for the DACH region.
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