Unleashing Potential: Nurturing Top Contributors for Impactful Growth

HSMAI staff recently had the chance to interview Bart Berkey, Founder and CEO at Most People Don’t, a speaker at the upcoming Sales Leader Forum. We learned more about his experience and what attendees can expect from his session, Unleashing Potential: Nurturing Top Contributors for Impactful Growth. 

Q: Can you share a bit about your journey that has shaped your perspective, and how they inform the insights you’ll be sharing? 

A: My 35+ year journey in the hospitality industry has profoundly shaped my approach to leadership. Over the years, I’ve held sales, management, and executive roles for Hyatt, Ritz-Carlton, and Marriott, as well as in a CVB. After I wrote my book Most People Don’t, organizations started to approach me to share the importance of actions that most people overlook—sharing knowledge, fostering growth, maintaining a positive attitude, and spreading kindness, which led me to take control of my own destiny and found my company. These experiences, rooted in the unique challenges and opportunities of our industry, inform the insights I’ll share with attendees. 

Q: Can you give us a sneak peek into the takeaways attendees can expect from your session? 

A: Certainly! Attendees can expect to gain insights on what to do when you have a person that is a great seller and all of the sudden, they get promoted to leadership and it turns out they are not the best leader. To answer that we’ll also answer the question, “why do quarterbacks slide?” Through real-life stories, and tangible examples, I’ll encourage everyone to think differently about their leadership approach and capabilities. 

Q: What inspired you to choose this topic, and why do you think it’s important for our audience at Sales Leader Forum? 

A: The reason why I believe this discussion is so critically important is because it is hard to find great salespeople. It is hard to keep great salespeople. If you have a team that is reporting to a leader, and they’re not a good leader and they’re making people cry and they’re not there for them, you’re going to lose those people.  

If we can make sure that the leaders are good leaders, that they are great leaders, that they want to be a leader, and that they are focused on helping others, then no longer is it my way or the highway. It is: What do you need? How can I help you? What obstacles can I remove? That is the goal that we want to get to with sales leadership. 

Q: Can you share a story on nurturing leadership? 

A:  In my podcast, I interview industry leaders. The top takeaways I’m hearing is to be self-aware. Learn what you are good at, surround yourself with people that are better than you, and make up for deficits that you have and then allow your team to do what they do best and help them.  

It’s a different, totally different perspective than what leaders perhaps were doing years and years ago when it was all about the title and you need to treat me one way.  I remember when I first became a director of people, and I was cocky, egotistical. I went from a salesperson to a leader of people. And I’ll never forget I had this one conversation with our director of finance. She was not helping with some credit billing that were looking for. And I cringe, but I actually said, “do you know who I am and what I do?” Meaning you better treat me with respect, and you better do what I want. That’s not the way to lead people. That’s not the way to be a director. That’s not the way to be a boss.  

Q: What advice would you give young sales professionals?  

A: I believe in pursuing one’s passion immediately. My advice would be to not chase the pennies or the title. Hospitality’s greatest gift is the ability to create memories. Passion and purpose should be at the forefront.  

Q: For those looking to deepen their understanding or application of your session’s insights, what resources or next steps would you recommend? 

A: If attendees to the session can complete this free survey prior, we will touch upon the top 4 strengths that these sales professionals have, and how they can use the survey to identify their “seller turned leader” or vice versa. 

Also, attendees can learn more by checking out my website that has information about my book, podcast, and weekly newsletter.  

HSMAI’s Sales Leader Forum is being held in Long Beach, CA on November 8, 2023.Learn more. 

Categories: Sales
Insight Type: Articles