Tl;dr on Sales and Selling from A16.

Selling to an enterprise is like passing a law through Congress.

The default is companies reject all products.

Coin-operated idiots — the Silicon Valley nonsense of sales forces (Dalgaard). They are your frontline with customers.

Sales reps have a NOW sense of urgency in a way that Product never does (invalidated, purely imagined products)

Selling for money to consumers — Apple could work
Selling to companies — sales
Product for free with advertising — sales

Sales doesn’t sell. It creates value for customers.

Competitive – compete to sell
High courage
Focused disciplines
Some charisma
High horsepower
Can take a beating – military, team sports

Sales varies by cycle –>

Lifecycle —
– Evangelistic sale when you have all the leads
– Scaled regional Rep

– Hard to match success in one category vs another

The importance of competitiveness — failure is vivid and total. You get fired.
– Nobody has a hobby of selling for free without competitive

My favorite Rep…doesn’t think about how many leads they are going to get from their SDR. They take their goal number and know how many leads they are going to go hunt for themselves and how many deals will still be in Pipeline at end of quarter.

Geography luck — great reps do best with fewer accounts to cover. Smaller territory.

Assessing ability
— well obviously are you showing up
— if outside sales then 3-5 per day
— for inside sales perhaps 10-20 per day
–> these have truly different mentalities at the pacing. Hard to pace. Hard to show knowledge and expertise.

Three models.
– Bottoms up. Inside sales. Eg Freemium to Premium products.
– Top down. Outside direct sales. Eg regional in-territory folks to visit heads of companies in the field.
– Or a Hybrid.

Siebel – outside direct
Salesforce – let’s focus below them where they can’t afford to go. Inside.

Can you do this in all categories?
– big decisions = complex, many users and stakeholders = outside strategy
– small decisions = departmental = inside and bottom up

Channel strategy is a costly apparatus.

VP of Sales is hire #…?
– CEO can distribute leads to sales reps as individual contributors
– or else, get a Director level sales leader who can then assemble team around them
– or else, if PMF is very strong you might get a VP. They are there to scale; so when it is time you get them to scale.

Sales, to other people, IS your company. They never meet anybody else.

Compensation. Make it very simple in two variables. Pay for it and you will get what you pay for. More complicated and forget the rest.