What do you look for in a VP of sales?

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JASON LEMKIN

I’ve written a lot about this, but for most start-ups, you can boil it down to two points:

  • Has she built at least a small team before? Have they hired at least 2–3 reps that have performed well? This isn’t the same as having been a great rep herself, or having inherited a team. If you can hire 2–3 great ones, you can likely scale and hire 20–30. Do the diligence here to make sure she’s really been able to recruit at least a few successful reps. This is a tough skill to develop. More here: https://www.saastr.com/what-a-vp…

and

  • Has she sold as your price point, approximately? Sales of $3,000 a year products are very different from $300,000 or even $30,000 a year products.

What is much less important:

  • Don’t overindex on domain expertise. This can be learned in a month or two. The skills to build a team at your price point? That takes years to learn.
  • Don’t expect a VPS candidate to be good at everything — no one is. No VP of Sales is equally great at both inbound and outbound sales. At both big deals and small deals. Etc. Etc. Mostly, experience selling at your target price point solves for the trade-offs here. Don’t expect your VPS to be great at all the aspects of sales. More here: https://www.saastr.com/your-vp-o…

Overall on the topic, more here: https://www.saastr.com/the-48-ty…

and:

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Published on October 10, 2017
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