Successful entrepreneurs are passionate and dedicated. They are characterized by an unrelenting zeal to succeed. Such leaders have a creative streak and an unrelentingly strong work ethic. One such dedicated and goal-driven leader is Chad Burmeister, the CEO of ScaleX.ai and BDR.ai.
Chad has been a salesperson his entire life. In his early childhood, he used to sell candy on the bus on the way to school. Over time, he evolved into a seasoned professional and has held various positions in sales and marketing with renowned companies like FedEx, Cisco- WebEx, RingCentral, and ConnectAndSell. After having an experience of over 25 years in the marketing domain, Chad discovered that he was not destined to be confined to rules and regulations and to operate within a “box”. As a result, he ventured out to start his own company. In 2004 – 2006, even before “digital sales” had attained prominence, Chad launched Tele-SalesForce and signed nearly 50 clients to help them with telemarketing and appointment setting. “Over the last 10–15 years, the world has changed. It turns out, optimizing multiple channels of communication from phone, email, social, video, and more, has become important (and complex)!” says Chad.
Subsequently, he launched ScaleX.ai in 2017, and more recently, BDR.ai in 2018. ScaleX.ai takes care of the entire Sales Development Representative (SDR)/Business Development Representative (BDR) role, powered by artificial intelligence. For about the same cost a full-time BDR, the company delivers 10,000 sales activities per month (10X more than a typical SDR or BDR), and typically delivers between 10–50 meetings/month. BDR.ai is an offshoot of ScaleX which takes care of the entire digital outreach strategy on behalf of a quota carrying salesperson. BDR.ai sources 1,000 leads/month from leading data providers, and then executes 100 emails/day and 100-200 social selling activities/day for about 1/3rd the cost of a dedicated BDR.
Tackling Challenges with a Game-Face On
The turning point for Chad’s career in sales came when he was fired from his first job out of college. He was a born introvert, and it showed. He had to overcome numerous hurdles to make it to the pinnacle of success. Over countless years of practice and hard work, Chad was able to become a “learned extrovert” and an incredible sales leader. His hard work paid off as it turned him into an outstanding individual. “The outward facing part didn’t come natural though, even though many who know me would say they had no idea. Hard work beats talent every time,” he adds.
Chad believes in looking at every challenge in the eye and transforming them into opportunities. Finding technology partners who will partner in a way that is meaningful for their clients has been a challenge. It has taken several attempts – many successes, and a few failures. Chad’s team of world-class operations combined with great sales and marketing allows him to listen and deliver to the clients, and pivot to what is meaningful in the market.
A Dedicated Leader
Chad is a firm believer in working hard and playing hard. He believes that as one works hard to achieve their desired objectives, they should also spend some time to celebrate their achievements. “My goal is to build a company that drives so much economic value that I can afford to ride off into the sunset with my wife and enjoy flying my children to unique “ports of call” in Europe, Asia, and all over God’s great planet!” says Chad. He believes in empowering his employees by understanding their goals and desires, and then helping them to achieve the same.
Ensuring Employee Growth and Empowerment
The company relies on Gong.io to capture call recordings that are integrated automatically into SalesForce.com. This allows Chad to have 1:1s with sales reps, as well as customer success, to provide appropriate call coaching. He has been a firm believer of the notion – “coach to neutral elements”. He says, “If someone isn’t doing something right, don’t say they are doing it wrong. Show them the proper behavior then coach to neutral elements”. Chad also recommends that sales people read great books like Gap Selling, by Keenan, which will motivate them to improve themselves and enhance their performance.
Winning Laurels on the Road to Glory
Under the insightful leadership of Chad, ScaleX.ai has won numerous accolades. It has achieved various noteworthy landmarks throughout its illustrious journey. In 2018, ScaleX.ai won two awards – Top 20 Sales Management Application and Top 50 Most Admired Company of the year by two respectable organizations. “The thing I’m most proud of – 50 new clients in 2018, and 20 already by the end of January, 2019!” he adds.
Words of Advice for Up-and-Coming Entrepreneurs
In the years to come, Chad plans to participate in some sales related businesses, but more from an advisor point of view. Chad feels that emerging entrepreneurs should stay with a company for at least a while early in their career. They should learn the basics and hone their skills. Constantly working on improving their skills will be beneficial for them. He advises them to find business problems that need to be solved. They should attend events that encourage and promote entrepreneurship. This will nurture their knowledge about business and entrepreneurship. Chad concludes by saying, “Find a mentor. Work hard, play hard!”