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Demofest 2024: A Dive into Tony Francetic's Stoic Mindset

Demofest 2024: A Dive into Tony Francetic's Stoic Mindset

Who is Tony Francetic?

Director of Presales Support at Thomson Reuters

At this year's Demofest, Tony Francetic, Director of Presales Support at Thomson Reuters, really got the audience thinking, about philosophy and presales. Francetic's presentation discussed ancient Stoic philosophy in the context of the modern presales industry. With a background in technical support, training, and leadership within Thomson Reuters, a perspective incorporating age old principles to increase professional effectiveness in presales roles was refreshing. How can Stoicism can be applied to work challenges and life itself? 

Want to learn more about Tony Francetic and his transition into presales? Check out this podcast episode from The Path to Presales, "From Journalism to Presales Leadership: Tony Francetic's Unique Journey and Stoic Principles for PreSales Excellence."


Understanding Stoicism

More Than Just an Ancient Philosophy

Tony Francetic thinks Stoicism is just as relevant today as it was 2000 years ago. Stoicism is fundamental to many modern idioms and phrases, and Francetic discussed facets of the philosophy that help improve daily life and to achieve professional goals. Tony advocates understanding and adopting this mindset to enhance one's ability to handle professional setbacks and personal challenges.

The Four Stoic Virtues

How They Relate to Presales


In presales, wisdom means more than having the necessary knowledge to provide effective solutions consulting. Presales professionals need a deep understanding of the product, market, competitors, and customer needs, in addition to deep understanding of soft skills. Wisdom comes from experience and is also why continuous learning is important to keep pace with industry trends, technological advancements, and buyer behaviors. 

Remember, there is a difference between intellect and wisdom. Intellect involves acquiring knowledge, and wisdom is how you apply that knowledge in everyday life.


Every presales demonstration requires courage. Courage in presales requires assertiveness, informed decision-making, and a growth mindset. Making calculated assumptions about customer needs, asking questions when you need answers, and being receptive to feedback, all require courage.  Additionally, it requires viewing mistakes as learning opportunities to better understand your customer and better understand where you can improve. These attributes of courage culminate to create a confident and customer centered presales approach. 


Presales can be a high-stress environment, and for presales professionals to stay calm and composed is key to maintaining customer trust and confidence. Temperance is a quality that helps individuals manage challenges and stress, presenting themselves with composure during critical presentations and client interactions. Maintaining composure under pressure is a mark of some of the most successful presales professionals and comes with deep confidence, experience, and training.

5 Critical Discovery Mistakes and 

How to Avoid Them


Engaging in ethical and fair practices in presales builds trust with both clients and colleagues, and should be a non negotiable in building your career. Prioritizing the best interests of the client, even if it means sacrificing short-term gains, in order to create long-lasting relationships based on integrity and mutual respect is a regular example of Justice in presales. Individuals adopting a more just approach in their presales career can ensure that they are acting in accordance with the highest standards of professional conduct and building relationships to last. 

Leveraging the Stoic Mindset

Peak Presales Performance

Francetic drew attention to the synergy between Stoic principles and successful presales strategies. He pointed out that while many are familiar with methodologies like Demo2Win, integrating this methodology with a strong, resilient mindset forms the best strategy for presales success. According to Francetic, embracing a Stoic mindset can be presales professionals, as it helps develop a deeper sense of self-awareness. This, in turn, enables them to build genuine connections with clients, which is crucial for establishing long-lasting business relationships.

By adopting a Stoic approach, presales professionals can learn to focus on what they can control and let go of what they can't. This helps them stay calm, composed, and in control, even in the face of challenging situations. They are better able to manage their emotions, avoid making impulsive decisions, and maintain a positive attitude, which is essential for success in presales.

Applying Stoicism

In Presales and Personal Life

Francetic's experiences formed the backbone of his presentation. He explained how Stoicism helped him and his team achieve better collaboration, confidence, and success in their roles. By adopting Stoic principles, such as focusing on what one can control and accepting what one cannot, presales professionals can improve their interactions and sales outcomes. Francetic's message was clear: It's never too late to integrate these principles into your professional life and personal life.

In Winning with Executives, we talk about focusing on what one can control and what one can influence. In executive interactions, it's unlikely that you can completely control the outcome, but you can heavily influence the outcomes by employing the right tactics and approach.

The Takeaway

Stoicism for Presales Success in 2024

Tony Francetic's session at Demofest explored how Stoicism can inform presales best practices and help professionals frame professional challenges. Stoicism may be 2,000 years old but its tenets cultivate resilience, encourage ethical behavior, and promote effective communication skills, which are timeless.  Stoic principles promote a clear and focused mind over impulsive or emotional decision making. 

Follow Tony Francetic on LinkedIn, where he shares additional insights into applying Stoic principles in professional settings. 

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