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VP Sales or Magician? How Founders and VC's Don't Seem To Know The Difference

VP Sales.


The job descriptions for this role usually don’t speak to the actual expectations. Really what most founders and CEO’s are looking for is a magician.


I built a cool company with a cool product. But now I realize the hard part is actually selling it. So I figure I’ll outsource that job and hire a VP Sales with insane expectations.


I’ll compare my company to the unicorns of the world and I’ll expect that if I hire a great VP Sales they’ll be responsible for making my company a unicorn.


Reality check. It doesn’t work that way.


I love salespeople and I believe we’re amongst the most important functions of building a unicorn, but it’s not that simple.


Salespeople don’t generate demand. They convert demand to revenue. The creation of demand is the responsibility of the product and marketing teams. With a huge emphasis on product.


Here’s how it works.


1st you need a world-class product


2nd you need world-class marketing


3rd you need world-class sales


You cannot skip any of those “world-class steps” and expect a unicorn outcome.


Yet far too often the first two steps are skipped and the sales team takes the blame.


Did your VP Product get fired when you lost deals to missing features?


No, but your VP Sales got fired due to missed revenue targets.

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