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“Building a SaaS business is very hard. And just because you have the best product doesn’t mean you’ll be successful”, said Jonno Southam, Venture Capital Business Development Manager at Google (ex-AWS) at SaaStock EMEA Online 2020.

Founders typically hire a sales leader as their first commercial hire and founders are rarely experienced in sales, as we know. So this is usually the top of the list in regard to hiring priority.

It’s been thought it’s a good idea in the past to hire someone with a good contact book to get you some great logos quickly.

But actually the kind of person that you really need to hire as your first VP of Sales needs to be prepared to get their hands dirty and to grow professionally with the business.

Skills such as building a story, the sales process, the first call deck, and being prepared to pick up the phone.

They really need to care about the product and its future development, and then take the feedback they get from customers to help the CTO build and manage the roadmap.

They need to be able to:

  • talk your language,
  • understand the customer problem,
  • have interesting examples in the past of where they’ve helped customers in a similar or same space.

Find out more about the importance of building partnerships from an early point of your startup’s journey and developing on those through to the later stages and beyond. Watch the full talk here.

To hear similar hiring, scaling and growth tips, join us at SaaStock EMEA next week, Oct 12-14. Hear the growth stories, learn the proven strategies and meet the right people to scale your SaaS. Get your free ticket now.

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