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Posted: January 24, 2013

Colorado’s Most Powerful Salespeople: Jennifer Chang

Strategic account manager, Scientific Civilian Region, Cisco Systems

the staff of ColoradoBiz

Jennifer Chang, 32

Strategic account manager, Scientific Civilian Region, Cisco Systems, Centennial

SALES PRODUCTION: Chang finished the fiscal year 2011 at 195 percent of plan and brought in $14.9 million in revenue for fiscal year 2012. She was recognized as the Cisco FY12 Achiever Winner.

WHAT SHE DOES: Manages accounts for the Department of Energy, the National Nuclear Security Administration and NASA.

HIGH PRAISE: "She works hard to understand her customers’ environments and needs, and she patiently listens to her Cisco partners that work with her around the nation," said Ryan Clore, who works for a Cisco partner and nominated Chang for this award. "Even though she is on the road 70 percent of the time, she is one of the most responsive and thoughtful Cisco account managers I have ever encountered."

IMPORTANCE OF PATIENCE: "In the federal arena, deals can take months, and sometimes years, to move from request for information status to purchase-order status," Chang says. "If you’ve covered all your bases throughout the sales process, and architected a solution that meets your customer’s needs, then you have to trust in the work that you’ve done, and in the customer relationship that you have cultivated."

SALES PHILOSOPHY: "I ultimately strive to become a trusted adviser to every one of my customers. This doesn’t happen overnight. But it certainly is a culmination of multiple interactions and conversations, where honesty is of paramount value. If a customer has a requirement in an area that Cisco doesn’t specialize in, we articulate that, and refer our customers to the appropriate vendor(s)."

ON DEDICATION: "Because my accounts are all over the nation, I’m never truly ‘off the clock.’ If getting the job done means staying up late and getting up early, I do it."

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