In 2017, Peter Mueller joined the Cloud Communications division of NTT in Toronto, to work as an Account Executive. Two years on and he has progressed to be one of our Business Development Managers.
His day-to-day work has two main workflows. Firstly, Peter handles internal administration. This involves coordinating with NTT solutions consultants and the professional services team on projects and updating the internal Customer Relationship Management tools with opportunity and activity data. In addition, Peter organizes and schedules customer meetings. Typically, these will be to introduce the company to prospective clients and explore the fit between our solutions and their needs and expectations, or else to progress and close an opportunity once a good fit has been determined.
You don’t need to talk for too long to Peter to acknowledge his passion and investment for his job. So, join us as we ask him a few questions to learn more about his career at NTT.
Q. How has your background prepared you for your role?
There are three variables that I think have led to my success at NTT. The first is my father. He was a Vice President of Sales and instilled values in me regarding work ethic, customer/need-driven selling and accountability. The next was my years of rowing. Participating in a competitive environment from a young age has built up a tolerance to pressure & performance-driven roles. The underlying philosophy that it’s the repetitive, mundane work that will ultimately add up to success over time is true not only in sport but also in sales. Small things add up. Finally, it would be my experience in retail sales. My earliest jobs were customer-facing, service-oriented roles. It taught me how to interact with strangers and help them find what they are looking for.
Q. How do you turn a lead into a sustainable relationship?
You build a successful relationship by solving your customer’s problems, listening to them, and executing what you are promising successfully. This might – in some cases – mean having difficult conversations with your clients and avoiding the trap of falling into the ‘yes-person stereotype. You need to properly set expectations, invest time into the projects, and be an expert that your clients/leads feel comfortable with trusting.
Q. In your video, you talk about our integration within the NTT Ltd. Group. What has changed in your point of view since we joined this wider network?
The biggest change by far has been seeing how each part of the family has its idiosyncrasies and processes. We can still effectively communicate and coordinate with each other. This provides a significant opportunity for every member of the NTT Ltd. Group to work together and bring our joint services to our existing customers.
Q. What do you think of current developments in our industry? How might they affect our business development efforts?
The pandemic has created enormous demand for our industry. But as companies return to the office, or look to have some form of hybrid work, this demand will slowly decline. Creating forward-looking offers to stay relevant in the market to meet these hybrid work environments will be very important. Likewise, we must be conscious of where our value proposition fits against the greater market and alongside our partners Microsoft & Cisco. As they continue to invest in their direct infrastructure, we must ensure that both they and their customers understand where we fit in the ecosystem.
In addition, PSTN (Public Switched Telephone Network) is declining each year. Identifying other high-value services—such as our managed services—and being able to explain the capabilities behind them to enterprise executives will, at least I believe, be very important soon. However, the Cloud Communications Division of NTT has always been quick to adapt to market conditions and I have absolute faith in our product team.
Q. What’s been your most satisfying deal so far?
We provided a global Microsoft Teams voice solution for a customer. One of the partners was also managing their own parallel sales cycle. We needed to meet tight deadlines, deploy a pilot alongside a complex set of requirements, and go through multiple security reviews. Being able to successfully manage all these moving pieces while building confidence at the CIO level made this deal very rewarding. It showed not only how our internal teams can come together to solve our customer problems, but how we can do that while helping our partners achieve their goals as well.