Interview: Nikki Donkin

As anyone who has spent time in business development can attest to, sales can be a tough job. Dealing with rejection and unfair perceptions are just the start…

So it was lovely to catch up with Nikki Donkin from Productspec this week to hear how honesty, integrity and maintaining close connections with clients are helping her win sales and change perceptions. With a refreshing outlook and positive approach, Nikki is yet another woman in our industry we admire.

Read Nikki’s story, including who she looks up to and why she isn’t delivering babies, in our latest interview.

Please provide your name, job title and company name.

Nikki Donkin, Sales Representative, Productspec.

How long have you spent in your current position?

It will be two years in June.

What job did you have before your current role?

Residential sales at Barfoot & Thompson.

To date, what has been your career highlight?

There is nothing quite like making your first sale, especially when you’ve been working on it for some time.

Who have you admired or learnt from the most in your career and why?

Our General Manager, Ian Watt. He’s really good at what he does and is always happy to help when needed.

Are you doing what you thought you’d be doing when you were younger? If not, what type of job did you expect you would have?

I always thought I would do sales, especially real estate. Real estate was a great job, but it was time for a change.

I wanted to be a midwife for a long time, but I wouldn’t have been able to handle the lows of the job. I’ve been lucky to be present at the birth of my niece and nephew, so at least I have been able to experience that!

What do you think is the most important quality or skill you need to succeed in your current role?

Honesty. You need to have a good relationship with clients, and they need to be able to trust you. This doesn’t align with some people’s perception of sales people, but I’d much rather lose a sale through honesty and have a happy client that will refer other people to me, than win a sale through dishonesty and have an unhappy client!

What’s one thing you hope to achieve this year, either at work or in your personal life?

Furthering my skills and education.

Do you have any tips or advice for those just starting out in the industry?

It’s easy to give up when you’re told no to a sale, but it’s important to maintain a good relationship with that potential client. It usually comes down to timing. Keep filling your pipeline and sales will eventually fall out the other end!