Advice and Whiskey with Julie Swift

Waypoint’s vice president of foodservice shares her best sales strategies.

By Jeff Houghton

May 2018

Julie Swift is the vice president of food service for Waypoint
Illustration by Alex WolkenSips and Sales Strategies with Julie Swift Purchase Photo

Julie Swift is the vice president of food service for Waypoint, and before that she was the national sales director for the non-commercial division at French’s. She sat down to pour out some of her sales wisdom over drinks at Queen City Wine Dive.

“Know really, really well what you’re selling.”

“Know your points of influence. Know what’s going on with the customer. Know what’s going to be impactful to them. Is it solving a problem? Is it bringing something new and different? Is it bringing innovation? Or is it literally just sitting down and having a really good conversation about their business?” 

“Above all else, bring your passion. It’s visible; if it’s not there, it’s visible, too. When you bring your passion, people know you’re invested in the conversation you’re having, they know you’re invested in their business, and you start to see them feel a different way in the conversation and get excited themselves. It’s true what they say about it being contagious.”

“It’s important to come from a place of integrity. When you think about different people in sales across different industries, all kinds of different things come to mind. I think you’ve got to let the person that you’re selling know really early in the conversation that you come from a place of integrity.”

“Each customer is different. You have to adjust. You have to be adaptable. Trust your intuition.” 

“If it’s the first time you call on a customer, go in with an empty bag. It really is all about, ‘What do you need?’”

“Bringing a solution is definitely a way to get in the door, but it’s also the way to build the relationship to the next level.”

“Be the authentic version of yourself. That’s where your confidence lives, and there’s nothing more powerful than confidence.”