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Harry Barker

December 5, 2023
Team Tangent

Our Changemakers are Sales Mentors who are supporting the next generation to access opportunities in tech sales. They make an outsized impact on the lives of our jobseekers through short-term mentoring and referring them for open roles.

Learn why they became a Tangent Mentor 👇

Harry Barker

Harry is an Account Executive at Oracle Netsuite. In this edition, he shares his story of being a 5 generation salesman, how googling "Highest paying areas of sales" got him into Tech and how his experience of being Mentored has encouraged him to give back

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Tell us a bit about yourself and what you’re up to now 

I’m a 5th generation salesman from a former mill town called Cleckheaton in West Yorkshire. The Barkers have sold everything from fire places to fire extinguishers. I started selling sweets in school and now I sell Financial ERP. Being a yorkshire lad I like a drink but I also like football, cold water swimming and indie rock gigs. Currently I work for Oracle NetSuite  in the Emerging New Business UK/I team

What was your journey into a career in tech sales?

I worked as a cleaner at a self storage unit, eventually working my way up to selling the units and managing the warehouse on weekends. Knowing I wanted to be in sales I googled “Highest paying areas of sales” and software sales seemed like the best fit as I did a summer internship at Yorkshire water on the IT help desk. I asked around everyone I knew and eventually found out that a friend had a sister working at Oracle. After a short 15 minute conversation I had with her to learn more she referred me. Just goes to show, it's not what you know, it’s who you know!

What would you say are the best things about working in Tech Sales?

Money! It's tough, but that’s why it pays well. There’s few jobs you can make over 100k a year in your twenties. The career development is good too - you tend to start off as a BDR do one or two years then move into an Account Executive role for SMB (small-to-medium businesses). As you gain more experience you move up the ladder into midmarket and enterprise. Some people use a BDR or Junior AE role to jump into Product, Marketing or Account Management. It teaches you a lot and for me its the best decision I’ve ever made.

You also learn the importance of hard work, listening to feedback and constant improvement. It’s the simplest thing on paper and the hardest thing in practice.

At the moment, my goal is to move into a Mid-Market position internally at Oracle NetSuite. Absolutely love the culture, the people and the product. 

What advice would you give to someone who is just about to start their career in sales?

Get comfortable being uncomfortable!

Why did you decide to join Tangent as a Mentor and why should others join as Mentors too?

Having benefited enormously from mentors at NetSuite, it only feels right to pass on the favour. Practicing coaching people is also part of the appeal, whether thats working closely with my BDR or helping people get into tech sales. The the Tangent team are doing are so impressive and I love that I have the opportunity to be a part of it.

Why others should join: For others looking to mentor, I think its great to feel you’re making a difference. We’ve all had support to get where we are, now it's our turn to give back. We’ve all relied on others to get us to where we are and I feel like the right thing to do is pay it forward. You can also enrich your my CV with proof of coaching/ mentoring abilities and not to mention there’s the potential for a cheeky referral bonus!

Ready to make a difference?

Tangent connects you with aspiring Business Development Reps from socially diverse backgrounds for short-term mentoring and an employee referral.

Sign up to be a Tangent Mentor today 👇

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