Balancing the Grind with David Cooper, Head of Commercial Sales at SEDNA

David Cooper is the Head of Commercial Sales at SEDNA, a smart email platform that helps enterprise companies escape the noise and confusion of traditional email systems.

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1) To kick things off, could you tell us a little about your career background and current role?

My career started off in Tech support but I quickly realised the bit I loved about solving customer’s problems was talking to them & understanding where the issues lay. It made sense for me to look for a role where I could get in front of customers more, so I took the plunge into Sales. 

I’ve spent 12+ years in the technology & the SaaS world with companies such as Intuit, The Access Group, Paddle and now SEDNA. I’ve worked with a range of businesses from Professional Services to Maritime over my career and provided sales consultancy across a multitude of sectors. 

2) What does a day in your life look like for you? Can you take us through a recent workday?

Team huddles, forecast calls with my VP, coaching with my Team Leads & helping my Account Execs with some deal coaching / sitting on their calls.

It’s currently the end of quarter so things are a little different from usual. One of my teams is at target & the other is pushing for the final signature on a bit of a whale. So super tense times but very exciting.

3) What does work-life balance mean to you and how do you work to achieve that goal?

Work life balance for me is about enabling one’s life with the work that you do. There needs to be a reason behind our efforts and a goal in mind whilst doing it. For me I have big plans for the future and work is my way to achieve them.

There does need to be a cut off point for all we do, to enable the stress to be relieved & avoid burnout. Personally, I try to distress through physical activity and playing strategy games (when I can) as it helps divert the mind from the struggles of the day. My wife is also a wonderful person at helping me talk through the day & ensure I have a sensible plan of action for the coming adversity. 

4) In the past 12 months, have you started or stopped any routines or habits to change your life?

I have started running and frequenting the gym. I find this hugely helpful to put the worries of the day at the back of my mind and focus on something else entirely.

5) Do you have any favourite books, podcasts or newsletters that you’d like to recommend?

I am a bit of a geek, so fiction books: The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss, but business books, in sales there are three that consistently elevate members of my team: SPIN Selling, The Challenger Sale and MEDDIC

Podcasts would be ‘the 10 minute MBA’ or ‘Off Menu’

6) If you could read an interview about work-life balance by anyone, who would that be?

I would love to hear how high performance athletes balance their mindset and focus with down time as I can imagine the physical stresses of their lifestyle (media, competitions etc) would be very intense. Son Heung Min would probably be the person I’d be most interested in hearing from. 

7) Do you have any last thoughts on work, life or balance that you’d like to share with our readers?

Make sure you know your limits, we can push them sometimes but we cannot push them all the time. Too much too often and we risk crossing over to irritable demeanours, deteriorating mental health & poor performance. Make sure you have some form of outlet in your life, both mental escape and someone to talk through things with you to give you perspective. 

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About Author

Hey there! I'm Hao, the Editor-in-Chief at Balance the Grind. We’re on a mission to showcase healthy work-life balance through interesting stories from people all over the world, in different careers and lifestyles.