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Sarah - Account Executive at LastPass

February 2, 2024
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 👇

Sarah - Account Executive at LastPass

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

I am Sarah Milella and I am a 26 year old sales professional for LastPass. I was raised by a single mother between Bari and London, where I learned both English and Italian at a professional level. Never having met my father and observing since a very young age my mothers’ sacrifices, I have always had the highest of ambition to achieve everything I set my mind to. Passions of mine include economics, piano, ballet, painting and yoga. I have always focused on a sport at a younger age such as ballet and ballroom dancing at a professional level, and this helped me become a team focused yet resilient person, skills I tend to bring into my day to day role at LastPass.

What was your journey into a career in tech sales?

Before starting my career into tech sales, I was working in hospitality to help support myself during my university education. Working both full-time in hospitality and studying economics has helped me develop many skills that I feel lucky to have today.I have both been front of house and worked alongside the account management team of a global company for airline catering and events. Meeting different people on a daily basis in the form of a colleague or customer has helped me develop great communication abilities, customer service skills and a collaborative spirit. 

Every moment has helped me get into tech sales, from working in hospitality to focusing hard on my studies and upcoming exams without getting distracted by my first payslip and London nightlife. All this has alongside my unique life story has helped me develop the skill set that is useful to have when moving into a hunting role: business development.

What would you say are the best things about working in tech sales?

Absolutely, I'd be happy to share why working in tech sales can be such a rewarding experience! Working in tech sales has personally been a thrilling journey for me. One of the most exciting aspects is the opportunity to develop versatile skills that transcend industries. Communication skills take centre stage; I've learned to articulate complex tech concepts into easily understandable ideas. Simplifying technical jargon has proven invaluable in various situations, not just within sales but also in everyday conversations.

The earning potential in tech sales is another highlight. It's not just about the numbers on the pay check but the direct correlation between effort and reward. The ability to influence earnings through hard work and strategic thinking has been motivating. Moreover, the career development opportunities in this field are vast. You're constantly pushed to learn about new technologies, market trends, and customer needs. This learning curve has been instrumental in my growth, offering a dynamic environment where I can continuously enhance my skill set.

As for the future, I'm considering various paths. Sales is providing a solid foundation for understanding customer needs and market dynamics, which will lead me in a closing role, partner management and further in my future who knows a role in leadership! The experience gained here has sharpened my ability to understand and cater to people's needs, which I believe is a cornerstone for success in any field.

Overall, working in tech sales has not only been financially rewarding but has also equipped me with a diverse skill set and a keen understanding of how technology integrates into our lives. It's a journey that has opened up countless possibilities for my future career, and I am excited to be on this journey.

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

Starting a career in sales is like embarking on an adventure where every interaction is a chance to learn and grow. My advice? Embrace curiosity. Dive deep into understanding not just what you're selling, but why it matters to your clients. Listen intently—sometimes, the most powerful tool in sales is a genuine ear.

Rejection? It stings, but it's a crucial part of the journey. Don't let it deter you. Instead, let it guide you toward improvement. Stay organised; it might seem mundane, but trust me, it's the backbone of efficiency in this field.

And remember, sales isn't just about numbers. It's about building relationships, finding solutions, and offering genuine value. Stay true to that, and you'll find success beyond mere transactions. Most importantly, enjoy the ride. Every day in sales is a chance to learn, adapt, and excel. Good luck—I'm rooting for you!

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

As a BDR, I'm passionate about joining Tangent's mentorship referral program because I deeply understand the challenges of breaking into sales, especially for those from diverse backgrounds. Having navigated this path myself, I know firsthand the value of connections and guidance in kickstarting a career in sales.

A mentorship program like this would have been a game-changer for me, offering insights and support that could have propelled my journey much earlier. I believe that in sales, ambition and dedication are what truly matter—everyone deserves the chance to thrive in this field, regardless of their background. I want to pay it forward, leveraging my experience to help others access the connections and knowledge necessary to excel in sales. It's about opening doors and creating opportunities for aspiring sales professionals, fostering a diverse and dynamic community within the industry.

Why others should join: joining Tangent's mentorship referral program is an incredible chance to champion diversity while showcasing your leadership and mentorship skills. By connecting with aspiring Business/Sales Development Representatives from diverse backgrounds, you're not just offering a referral; you're extending a hand to kickstart their careers.

This initiative isn't just about giving back—it's about creating a more inclusive industry. As leaders, it's vital to pay forward the support we received in our journey. Tangent provides a platform to make a tangible difference by guiding, supporting, and uplifting those who may not have had the same opportunities. Participating in this program not only enriches your CV with real examples of leadership and mentorship but also contributes to a more successful hiring process for companies. Employee referrals often get higher success rates than external hires, and by fostering a diverse pool of talent, you're actively enhancing the company's performance and culture.

Today, making a difference isn't just an option; it's a necessity. 

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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