“We also draw parallels between musical talents and the approach to leadership. There’s an emphasis on harmony, rhythm, collaboration, and achieving those collective goals. So, if everyone plays a different role (like playing instruments with different sounds or goals), you harmonize. When we collaborate and work together towards a bigger goal, we make beautiful Music, our results!” Introducing Shanelle Dunbar, Director, US Account Management, Growth, who sat down with Chantel George, CEO of Sistas in Sales, to chat about sales as a collaborative effort and balancing work and personal life as a dedicated mom of three.

Empowerment and Collaboration

When it comes to success, it’s all about empowering people and encouraging collaboration. As the conversation unfolds, Shanelle stresses the importance of collaboration, with Chanel complimenting her warm energy by adding that, at times, sales can be seen as cutthroat and competitive. By providing resources, support, and autonomy, Shanelle fosters open communication and encourages team members to take ownership of their work. From regular team meetings to brainstorming sessions and one-on-one discussions, she aims to create an environment where everyone’s contributions are valued.

“I encourage transparency, constructive feedback, and active listening. I like fostering a culture of open communication and collaboration where everyone’s contributions are valued.”

Success at Work and Home

Being a girl mom of three while leading a sales team requires serious juggling skills and lots of focus to be an effective leader at work and home. With a college student and two kids in high school, Shanelle strives to set clear boundaries between work and personal life and not bring one into another. She also shares a relatable sentiment with listeners by noting,

“My kids are my life, and I don’t want to miss out on anything, but I also don’t want to miss out on the big opportunities at work. I prioritize tasks, delegate when necessary, and set realistic goals.” 

Shanelle also reminds listeners not to forget the importance of mental health days—they’re a must in this fast-paced world.

The Role of Music in Leadership

Since she began singing sometime around the third grade when she hit the high note from Mariah Carey’s, Someday, Shanelle passionately adds, “Music has always been a part of my life, and I believe it enhances my leadership style and the way our team works together. I find that Music provides a sense of unity and positivity amongst our team.” Shanelle adds that incorporating Music into her leadership style adds a unique touch of creativity and passion to the work environment; whether she’s singing during team meetings or incorporating music-themed questions, it helps create a safe space for people to be themselves and harmonizes team dynamics.

Collaboration in Action

In the ever-evolving world of sales, Shanelle shares how staying ahead of trends leads to successful client engagements, even when faced with industry shifts. By continuously learning and staying informed, she positions her team as industry leaders to build strong relationships with clients and each other.

She reveals how the team is implementing a podding system to enhance collaboration and accountability and improve the client experience through their entire Taboola journey, including quicker onboarding and a quick launch. By bringing sales and account managers together to work towards common goals, they can streamline processes, improve customer experiences, and drive better results. “Fostering a culture of open communication and idea sharing within my team is super important, so with this pod system, sales and account managers will come together for a common goal – to get the client activated.” She adds that the benefit of each team working in tandem is account managers coaching sales to understand the backend of the tools and sales training account managers on how to upsell with clients. This holds teams accountable and continues to encourage and drive collaboration. “Collaborative teamwork in sales is essential!”

Final Thoughts

As the interview begins to close, Shannelle encourages those just starting in sales or those new to the ad-tech industry to focus on building relationships, continuously learning, and practicing resilience in the face of rejection. After all, success in sales and life is all about staying present and embracing the journey.

To hear Shanelle’s full video interview and other videos featuring women in sales at Taboola, stay connected with @Sistas in Sales and @Taboola on social media.

To learn more about why we are consistently ranked as a great place to work, check out the Taboola Life blog and visit our careers page. Discover your moment at #TaboolaLife.

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