A DocuSign Women in SaaS Sales Roundtable
We build products that help simplify the way organizations and individuals come to agreement. As we build those solutions, we also aim to build a culture where we can all do the best thinking and work of our lives together. Part of that work is fostering a greater sense of community, including frequent roundtable discussions with leaders in particular fields at DocuSign. Recently, we spoke with some of our women sales leaders about how they got started in sales, what they enjoy about their job and the advice they have for other women exploring sales careers. We hope you find what they said as inspiring as we found our discussion to be.
What do you like about working in Sales at DocuSign?
Tammy Aguillon, area vice president, commercial sales, shared that “DocuSign is a well-known brand with a highly-regarded product, and there are many companies undergoing digital transformation journeys, so it’s an exciting opportunity.”
“We also have the best people,” said Melissa Treier, regional vice president, enterprise sales. “They are smart, creative and collaborative and really care about the customer.”
“I’m always learning new things managing a very multicultural team and a very diverse set of customers across EMEA. We are growing and continue to establish a leadership presence in the region,” added Violeta Martin, area vice president, commercial sales in EMEA.
How did you get started in SaaS Sales?
Violeta shared that “I ended up in sales by accident. I was a telecommunications engineer working for an early-stage start-up. After a couple of months in the company, the CEO asked me to join him on sales meetings so I could do live product demonstrations and answer technical questions. After a few weeks, I was given the opportunity to move full-time to a sales role, and I loved it.”
Stephanie Daniel, director of solutions engineering added, “I was a client of DocuSign and was working with the team on building an integration between multiple systems. One of the DocuSign team members thought I would be great in Solutions Engineering and referred me for a role. It was the perfect change and direction my career needed.”
Tanya, senior director, global product and systems readiness shared: “I am a child of Lebanese immigrants, and my parents owned a business. I worked in high school and paid my way through college. Working at Nordstrom Men’s Shoes, I realized that selling is something that came naturally to me and that selling was about building relationships, asking questions and understanding pain points. Someone would come in for shoes, and they’d leave with a belt, shirt, and suit to match. I moved into tech sales when one of my repeat customers asked me to join his company, ultimately leading a sales team and using DocuSign internally. I was a fan from the start, and when the opportunity presented itself to join DocuSign, I jumped on it.”
What advice would you have for women who are thinking about pursuing a career in sales?
Tammy explained “I didn’t see myself becoming a tech sales professional because I didn’t think I fit the mold of a traditional salesperson. Then I realized it can be a rewarding, challenging and a lucrative career. To get your foot in the door, don’t be afraid to take an entry-level or more junior role, and join a company that respects and embraces your strengths and that invests in their sales team.”
Violeta added that “some of the best sales people in my team were lawyers, recruiters or finance professionals before joining DocuSign. Think about the transferable skills you bring with you when applying for a sales role, and emphasize those skills.”
Stephanie’s advice was: “Just do it! Step outside your comfort zone and have the confidence to know you will survive even if you find out this is not your cup of tea. This industry is starved for women.”
Once you get a role, what is your advice for women on how to thrive?
Melissa advised to “work hard and smart and develop a network of mentors (both men and women) who will support you along the way. Never lose your willingness to learn, act with integrity, exhibit gratitude, and never burn a bridge.”
Tanya built on that point saying “collaborate with your team, and find an advocate who you can work with through good and bad times. Someone who can be a champion for you across the business - ultimately breaking barriers to support your success even further. And, what’s most fulfilling is that you’ll also be able to be an advocate for others.”
What is the hardest piece of career advice you have received that helped you develop as a professional in sales?
Tammy shared “when I first became a people leader, I thought I had to de-emphasize my soft skills and over-index on what I thought were more traditional sales leader characteristics. Through direct feedback and observations of other leaders I admire, I’ve learned that leaning into my strengths of empathy and bridging divergent views to build consensus are essential leadership skills in building engaged, motivated, and high performance teams.”
“I’ve learned that you can often learn more from your losses than your successes. So take the time to learn from those defeats, it will make you a better sales professional,” said Melissa.
Tanya shared “women still have to be aware of how they are perceived in business. I think about my tone of voice, how I show up in a meeting on or off the phone with my ideas, what recommendations I give and how they can be perceived. I’ve learned through mentorship and experience to lead with empathy, be a good listener, ground decisions in data and drive the right customer outcomes. That has really helped me be more effective as a woman in sales and leadership.”
What is the best piece of career advice you have received?
“Be confident, but also humble,” recommended Stephanie. “Proving you are capable does not mean dominating every conversation and showing how much you know. It also means you know how to listen, learn from others and evolve your thinking. Those are true marks of a leader.”
Violeta added: “It’s not about the right answer coming from you, it is about getting to the right answer regardless of where it comes from.”
Tammy thought “it’s very tempting to strive for a title or a buzzy company, but what really matters is the people you surround yourself with, the impact you get to have and aligning your professional priorities with your values.”
“Do the right thing by the customer and good things will happen,” added Melissa.
Interested in doing the work of your life at DocuSign? Check out our openings. We’d love to talk more.