PiF Technologies

Summer 2023 Intern Reflections

This Summer PiF welcomed a new class of Sales Development Interns of college Juniors looking to gain real-world experience and learn more about working in sales. Chris, a returning intern from Summer 2022 joined Nick and Marian on the PiF sales team to learn while doing, gain valuable industry knowledge, and help grow our organization as Sales Development Representatives. They were thrown head-first into our culture and were able to speak to prospects both on the phone and live in the field.

While they will be sorely missed once they all return to school this fall, we’re so grateful for the 10 weeks we were able to spend with them, and wish them the best of luck for their upcoming academic year.

Before they wrapped up their time with PiF, we asked them to share some reflections on their internship experience as well as plans for their future careers.   

Marian Bulkley

Springfield College '24

Major: Business Management

What made you decide to apply to this internship?

PiF was the last internship I applied for and it was also the only one that genuinely struck an interest in me. During my junior year, one of my favorite professors told me that a job in sales would suit me, so I decided to apply to a few sales-based internships for the summer. I have always been curious about sales, and the internship description seemed like the perfect opportunity to test the waters. I could not have been more lucky with being accepted into this program. Every aspect of the description seemed fun and hands-on, which was primarily the reason I applied for it. 

What do you envision your future career to be? Did this internship change your hopeful career path?

I envision my future career to definitely be within some aspect of business. I am still not 100% sure of what I want a set career in, but I know I have time and a lot of wonderful opportunities ahead of me that will help guide me in the right direction. This internship certainly opened my eyes to the fact that a sales career is fun and very rewarding, which are two very admirable qualities for a future career. 

What’s the thing that surprised you the most about your internship?

The thing that surprised me most about this experience was definitely the people at PiF. I did not expect everybody to be so welcoming and excited to have us on board. I love how dedicated everybody was to helping me understand the ins and outs of this business. I felt very comfortable around everybody since the first day here and I am so grateful I was able to have such great mentors to look up to for the summer. 

Are there any practical skills you’ll take away from this experience? What are they?

The biggest practical skill that I will be taking away from this experience is how to talk and empathize with a very wide variety of people. I had so many conversations this summer with so many different types of people as well as many  “C-level” executives. Doing this matured my communication and speaking skills greatly. 

If you could start this internship all over again, what would you tell yourself on day one?

I would definitely tell myself to relax. I remember being incredibly nervous to start this internship, so I wish I could have told myself that it is going to turn out way better than I ever could have imagined. One other thing I would tell myself is to absorb every piece of information given. There were so many valuable pieces of wisdom thrown at us that I definitely will carry with me through life and through my future career paths. 

 

What is one thing you loved about PiF’s culture?

I loved how fun and light-hearted the atmosphere was. I could not have asked for a better community to be around this summer. Every day I was excited to go into the office because I knew I would have a great time and share lots of laughs with everybody. Another amazing trait to be surrounded by was everybody’s motivation, a lot of energy that rubbed off on me so I am very grateful for that.  I also really appreciated how dogs were allowed in the office. Office dogs Bentley and Skittles were always such a pleasure to be around as well. 

 

Can you recall one instance where you could apply the knowledge you learned in a real-life situation (i.e. sales call, field visit, etc.)?

I have learned how to not stress over rejections and objections. I can’t think of one specific instance where this was applied, but having to deal with hundreds of people telling you no, I have understood how to not stress being rejected and how to simply move on and leave it in the past. This is a skill that will certainly help me throughout my life in general and throughout any job I decide to pursue.

Nick Donatio

Colby College '24

Major: Psychology & Science, Technology, and Society

What made you decide to apply to this internship?

I applied to this internship because of my growing interest in the SaaS industry. I am passionate about staying up-to-date with the latest advancements in tech and I knew that PiF could provide me with the proper exposure. PiF has a wide range of software solutions that allow interns to learn and work on different projects involving different technologies, geared towards diverse industries. Lastly, I applied to this internship because I knew that the business owners at the PiF would treat me as a true professional and not just an intern. 

What do you envision your future career to be? Did this internship change your hopeful career path?

I envision my future career to be involved in a sales management role within the tech industry. This internship provided me with the chance to connect with professionals in the SaaS world, which is extremely beneficial for my future career opportunities. This summer allowed me to explore a specific career path and assess my long-term career goals in the software sales industry. 

What’s the thing that surprised you the most about your internship?

Simply put, what surprised me the most about this internship was how hands-on management allowed us to be. We were involved in a plethora of different assignments, whether that was in the field or at home-base in the office. We were always doing something geared towards promoting the welfare of the company. 

Are there any practical skills you’ll take away from this experience? What are they?

There were a handful of practical skills that I can take away from this internship. The first is communication skills. Effective communication skills are crucial in sales, specifically learning how to articulate proper responses and pivot in different directions when hit with an objection. The communication skills acquired during this internship allowed me to create a solid “sales pitch” which involved crafting persuasive openers tailored to different customer profiles. The second major skill that I adopted during this internship involved customer relationship management (CRM). We learned how to target specific audiences and manage customer relationships with follow up emails and calls. Thirdly, understanding/learning about the software products enabled us to address customers’ inquiries effectively.  Lastly, building qualities of resilience. Rejection is a common aspect of sales, and we learned how to bounce back from setbacks while maintaining a positive mindset. 

If you could start this internship all over again, what would you tell yourself on day one?

It’s a marathon not a sprint. Chill with the happy ears. 

What is one thing you loved about PiF’s culture?

I truly loved the PiF community! Every single person in the office from top to bottom was extremely kind and empathetic to all of the interns. The PiF community made us feel comfortable and at home right from the start. When one of us messed up, we were approached with constructive feedback from our team leaders. 

Can you recall one instance where you were able to apply the knowledge you learned in a real life situation (i.e. sales call, field visit, etc.)?

There was one instance where I was out and about this summer and I had run into a C-level decision maker at a local college. I began telling this gentleman about my current experience interning with PiF technologies and he began telling me about his position within the purchasing department at his college. One thing led to another, and we ended up booking a demo for an AP automation solution! It was truly satisfying to translate what I learned in the office into the real world on my own.

Chris Gately

Stonehill College '24

Major: Marketing

What made you decide to apply to this internship?

I applied for this internship for a second summer because I liked how great the atmosphere in the office was. All of the people who work here really care about you and want to help you grow from a professional standpoint. Also, I wanted to build upon the work I did last summer and gain more experience in the field that I am interested in pursuing. 

What do you envision your future career to be? Did this internship change your hopeful career path?

I still envision myself in the sales field. I like how in sales, your days are never the same. You are constantly looking for more potential customers and adapting. This internship really helped me understand that sales is the right fit for me for a career. I like the concept of thinking on your feet and being quick to the draw in order to handle objections. It is also awesome to help companies realize that thanks to PiF’s solutions there are better ways of doing certain tasks to allow their business to run more efficiently.

What’s the thing that surprised you the most about your internship?

One thing that stood out to me is how the sales team pushes everybody to be better. I always thought that sales was all about being the top dog, but the team here works toward success together. All of the sales team at PiF want everyone to succeed and share knowledge with one another about how to approach things. They tell each other what worked well and what did not for themselves to help each other grow. Also, how to approach the objection in a different way to be successful in the future. 

Are there any practical skills you’ll take away from this experience? What are they?

During this internship, I learned a lot of valuable lessons. The first one would be the acronym C.E.O.T. or Consistent Effort Over Time. I learned that “sales never sleeps” and you really get out what you put in. With the mindset of C.E.O.T., you get the push you need in order to do the difficult legwork on the front end to help you in the long run. Another skill I learned is the idea of “selling through curiosity.” This is a very helpful tool to use in all conversations. Using the phrases “just curious” or “help me understand” in conversations with prospects have been a great help in getting people to open up in conversations and gain valuable information. This skill also helps you layer in empathy very well in times where it may be hard to do so. 

If you could start this internship all over again, what would you tell yourself on day one? 

I would tell myself, it is just a conversation. Don’t get hung up on the calls that don’t go your way because there will be a call that will go your way. Another thing I would tell myself would be to differ from the script to make it conversational to better allow you to lower the guard of the person you are speaking with. 

What is one thing you loved about PiF’s culture?

The office atmosphere is a really great one to be in. All the people in the company, whether they are on the sales/marketing team, or professional services team, make you feel welcomed and appreciated. Everyone is easy to talk to but when it comes time to do work, a switch is flipped and it is work time. Also, the office is dog friendly and seeing the dogs in the office add a bit of variety to the work week. 

 

Can you recall one instance where you were able to apply the knowledge you learned in a real life situation (i.e. sales call, field visit, etc.)? I found that having a “human” conversation and using the selling through curiosity phrases help the prospect to open up. This is particularly helpful in situations where you do not know how to ask a question. It brings in empathy on your side and helps the person explain themselves. These phrases also help you gain a better understanding of topics you are not familiar with.  

Interested in joining the PiF team?

Learn more about our open careers

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