I was helping another SE yesterday navigate a situation we have all been through in our presales careers at some point... how to deal with a difficult Sales Rep. After we had our talk, I realized this would actually be a great thread for the PSC as well.
I was curious how everyone approaches maximizing their relationship and ultimately their results through how they interact with their sales counterparts. I know there are a lot of different AE/SE models (pooled, 1 to 1, etc) that will have different perspectives, but I think sharing some best practices amongst the group would help all of us, especially newer SE/SAs. Also, curious from SE Leaders what they've seen their best AE & SE combos do that really work. I'll start with some of the things that have worked for me (I have mainly been on a 1 to 1 model):
Try to understand why they do what they do. Just as we don't expect them to have our technical knowledge, there are probably reasons/pressure outside of what we see that is driving behaviors we don't initially understand.
Ask for feedback early - preferably in a 1:1
This opens up the conversation and paves the way for open communication. It also makes it feel natural when you offer feedback in return. Have a scheduled 1:1 and devote the 1st few minutes to this then tackle deals.
Share what you've seen other successful reps do
Whenever I offer feedback, I like to reference how another AE used that to get success. They are much more receptive and start to view your knowledge as even more credible
Try to develop a relationship outside of work
This one can be tougher, but the best AE working relationships I've had have been with AEs I've had the best none working relationship with as well. Definitely not a coincidence. Finding a common personal interest and bonding with that can help anchor the relationship.