The Top 8 SaaStr Tips to Building an Effective First Sales Team

The most important tips and best practices for founders when building out their first sales team:

  1. Get sales experience yourself first

    • Close the first 10-20 customers yourself to understand the sales process
    • This will give you critical insights to effectively train and manage your first sales reps
  2. Structure compensation to incentivize early sales reps

    • Consider letting new reps take home 50-100% of what they close in the first 1-3 months
    • This helps them “eat” and get motivated, before scaling back to a more standard 20-25% commission
  3. Hire sales reps you would buy from yourself

    • Since no one has heard of your product yet, each lead is precious
    • Hire reps that you would personally trust to sell your own product
  4. Hire at least 2 reps to start

    • Having a “control” group allows you to better understand what drives success
  5. Provide hands-on training and support

    • Be available to help your first reps all day, as they learn the product and sales process
    • Formal training processes can come later, but initial on-the-job learning is key
  6. Prioritize smarter, more experienced reps

    • The learning curve will be steep, so more capable reps are better
  7. Use a simple “round robin” lead distribution

    • Split leads evenly between reps at first, to keep things simple
  8. Hire reps with some relevant SaaS experience

    • Look for reps who have sold products at a similar price point before


I asked Perplexity AI search to summarize the best saastr articles on building a first sales team.  I think it did a pretty good job  The summaries we do might be better, but this is a great place to start.

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