Few jobs are as ambiguous as business development. Ask ten VPs of Business Development, and you’ll likely get a variety of answers: “Business development is sales,” some will say succinctly; others will answer with vaguely defined concepts like partnerships or hustling. But if you dig deeper, you’ll discover that business development is all about creating long term value for your company by expanding markets and relationships.
To do that, a successful BD professional must have a wide range of skills. They must be well rounded and capable of both planning for the future and making calculated decisions in the moment. They must be able to work with internal teams and external partners in a dynamic environment. And most importantly, they must be able to motivate themselves and their team members.
A successful BD professional also needs to be curious. They should constantly be asking questions about their market, competitors, and customers. This will enable them to make better decisions about everything from the text on their marketing campaigns to how they’re going to improve their current sales process.
Lastly, a good BD pro will know how to use data and metrics to drive their decisions. This is especially true when they’re working with prospects and clients, as a strong understanding of their pain points will help them to sell more effectively. They’ll also be able to customize all content sent to their prospects to show them that they care about them as people and their business.