Meet Aerodyne’s new Head of Sales, Tod Harvey

Like any business, Aerodyne has evolved over the years, and we found out why new Head of Sales, Tod Harvey is best placed to know all about the changes. 

Tell us a bit about your background and career so far 

Well, interestingly, I’ve worked for Aerodyne before. Back in 2001 I was a sales rep, out on the road, learning the ropes with Aerodyne’s founder, Ambrose Kingston. I left in 2008 to pursue my sales career but have always maintained a keen interest in the business. 

It’s been a fast-moving market since then. What’s changed? 

You’re right, because of the climate agenda, there’s a lot more to consider these days. The carbon footprint issue is much higher priority, as it should be, and the timeframe for targets is pretty real now. 

What about Aerodyne itself? What changes have you noticed? 

Originally, my role in sales was very product focused and we did some extra lines outside of aerodynamic kit. The business has obviously streamlined and niched with their expertise since then. 

In fact, the proposition at Aerodyne has changed considerably and we’re now fantastically positioned as a key advisor to our clients. I really admire the amount of work that’s done directly with fleet managers as this means we can add value where it’s really needed.  

Lots of our competitors don’t work directly with the end users, they operate through the manufacturers. We do that too, but our strength in data and analytics means we speak the same language as the fleet managers. I think we have more presence and gravitas now, we’re definitely leading the field in aerodynamic solutions. 

So, what do these changes mean for sales? 

My role is really to free up more of Ryan’s time so he can deal with the strategic direction of the business. I’d like to strengthen the sales capability of course, there’s always room for upskilling and improvement.  For me, sales as a skillset is changing. It’s much more about relationships now. In the old days, we used to make the sale and the relationship would come after, but it’s turned completely on its head now. Buyers want to know they can trust the people they are doing business with. Consumers are much better informed and have more information at their fingertips, so we need to demonstrate that we’re up to the job. 

What excites you most about your new challenge? 

I like the fact that I’ve got the chance to build something that future proofed. We have a huge amount of technical expertise within Aerodyne, but not everyone recognises themselves as experts. It’s time to change that and let people put their knowledge to good use.  

For me, building the best team is about playing to everyone’s strengths. Some will relish chasing cold leads, others will love the detail of producing quotes. Why interfere with what people enjoy? We can mould a team around a central process and let people fill the spaces according to what they love and loathe. By that I mean focusing on what they love, of course! 

So, you favour more of a team approach? 

Absolutely. When you have key account managers who are responsible for everything, you create a natural pinch point. If we can focus on the customer journey and our sales process and resource it appropriately, we can let people do what they enjoy and encourage knowledge sharing which then empowers every team member to do a better job. 

What do you think is different about sales nowadays? 

Well, I’ve already mentioned the importance of relationships building, which is a big difference. The other main factor we have to consider now is the online element – the social side of selling through platforms like LinkedIn and the fact that sometimes it is better to have Zoom calls rather than face-to-face meetings. Lots of salespeople prefer to be on location, shaking hands and meeting face-to-face but that’s not always possible with the speed of business these days. Plus, tools like Zoom help us reach much further than we could if we had to travel. 

What about the future of the business? Where would you like to see Aerodyne heading? 

I think we’re on a great trajectory with our role as trusted advisors. This industry has some very stringent targets to reach in a frighteningly short timeframe so our strength in data and analytics will mean we can add real value to those making the tough decisions. I’d like to see us capitalise on our leading position in the market and work with more fleets and grow further afield too. We’ve got a huge amount to offer, and our case studies and testimonials only need to be seen once by business leaders for them to know that we can make a tangible difference to their running costs. 

It’s exciting times and I’m delighted to be a part of it again.