Knowledge, experience, and hustle

Some wine sales reps are newbies to the business, without much experience with wine or sales.

Some wine sales reps have incredibly deep wine knowledge, but little sales experience.

Some wine sales reps are pros in sales, but not so much in wine.

And some wine reps are pros in sales, lots of experience, plus certifications up the whazoo, and encyclopedic knowledge of every wine region from Moldova to Chile.

Of those four, who has the most success? Take a guess.

The answer is we don’t know. And the reason we don’t know is threefold. One, we don’t define what ‘success’ means and unless you know the metric or the standards you cannot determine who is truly successful. Two, knowledge can only take you so far and unless you learn and refine sales techniques you will not have success (and vice versa). Third, we don’t talk about the most powerful factor: hustle.

If I’m playing the long game, I’d put my money on a driven sales rep. Somebody who wants to constantly improve and learn, who wants to hustle, who wants to out-work the competition, who wants to prove they can do it. And hustle has nothing to do with experience or knowledge.

If you’re in charge of hiring wine reps for a distributor, do you hire for drive and hustle, or experience and knowledge?

If you’re a wine sales rep with deep experienced and knowledge, do you think that’s a ticket to success? If so, push the pedal down on the drive and hustle.

Curiosity, tenacity, relentless pursuit, never thinking you’re coasting or got it good … that’s some powerful thinking. Time for some hustle.

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