The Pavilion Podcast
The Pavilion Podcast

Episode · 11 months ago

Ep 23: Compensating and Motivating Sales Development Reps (SDRs) feat Graham Collins

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Ep 23: Compensating and Motivating Sales Development Reps (SDRs) feat Graham Collins

...by the way. Hi and welcome to therevenue collective podcast. My name is Casey. Let Gordon and I'm your hosttoday. I am very excited. I get to sit down with Graham Collins, who is thehead of growth for a quota path. This is a special session because Photo Pathis actually our sponsor for this month. Quota path is commission trackingsoftware built by salespeople for salespeople. And after talking toGraham, I get it. If you wake up in a cold sweat, dreading the commission'sprocess quota path is for you. Quote A path provides commission transparencyfor everyone involved while motivating reps to sell more. Plus, it's so easyto on board it'll be running before your next commission cycle. Ditch thespreadsheets and formulas. Simplify commission calculation at quote a pathdot com. Today, Graham and I are going to talk about how to actually build complans. What should a career trajectory for an str looked like? How do you makesure there's contracts, parent see and alignment, and how do you deal with itwhen there's not? Graham keeps it, really, but he also gives some verytangible, very helpful tips for anybody that is in an SDR role or leading SDRteams. So with that, let's get going. Hello and welcome to the revenuecollective podcast. My name is Casey. Let Gordon and I'm your host today. Ihave the chance to sit down with Graham Collins. Graham is the currently thehead of growth for quota path, which, if you listen to the top of our episode,is also response. Er Photo Path is a sales first commission tracking tool,and Graham describes himself as a jack of all trades, working in sales,marketing operations and waxing poetic about com plants, which I'm veryexcited about because I think it is one of the most essential parts of the workwe dio. But it's often one of the most complicated. Ingram's previous life heran a 45% str team is the director of SDR Trend Kite, located in Austin today,Graham is coming to us from Maine with his wife and two dogs. He's verypassionate about good calm plants, craft beer and woodworking. So we haveour very own revenue collective Ron Swanson here. Welcome, Graham E amdoing good. So I have to start because I also have two dogs who I just had toput outside because they were acting like absolute nut job. What kind ofdogs do you have? Eso I have to Cattle dog mix is so they're blue heelerAustralian cattle dog mix is there? Couple of a couple of months? But Ilove them. E have a very specific caricature in my head Now you are inMaine, your woodworking. You have your cattle dogs. Like I'm looking at youright now you're rocking like a use a sweatshirt. So there is awesome imageof you in my head that I hope our conversation. All right, well, I'llhope I live up to it. That's great. Alright, Graham. So tell me. Tell me alittle bit about what your world looks like today. Obviously you're with quotapath and want to hear a bit about the company. But also a bit about your rolein what day to day looks like. Yeah, absolutely. Eso My title is Head ofGrowth, which, as I alluded to Are you alluded to is kind of ah jack of alltrades. I tell people that I do a job until we hire people who are better atit than I am, and then I let them take over. So currently I'm focusing on abit of our marketing stuff. So some content some podcasts, and we just dida revenue collective webinar recently, and I also focus a bit on sales andcustomer support on account management. But ah, big thing that I've beenfocusing on recently are compensation plan consultations that I I've beendoing with a bunch of folks from revenue Collective. I think I'veprobably about 50 at this point where I sit down and just do a deep dive intopeople's compensation plans as they're building new ones as they're reviewingtheir old compensation plans and quotas,...

...and oftentimes especially for VPs ofsales. They don't really have anybody toe bounce those ideas off of. And sothat's sort of one of the things that I'm really passionate about right now.I can appreciate that so much I I put in a past life, ran a salesorganization, and I think that was one of the most challenging pieces,especially as the organization gross because what might have been a calmplan for a few people, as you scale might need to look differently.Different needs of the organization. And so I think, to be able to not justhave a platform like a quota path, but also the consultation and that humanelement to talk through it, I think is pretty powerful. So when you say thatyou're passionate about it, usually passion comes from some experience.Tell me, Tell me, maybe what was either good or bad about some calm plants inyour past and what drove you to actually make this a passion of yours?Yeah, absolutely. So my previous role, I worked at a company in Austin calledTrendy Kite, where we were a PR and Communications Analytics platform thatallowed brands to track where they're being talked about in the news and whatkind of impact that was having on their their even the revenue. So that waswhat we did and Iran the SDR team there. But prior to that, I worked in saleswork in sales management have always been on the sales side of things, andI've seen a lot of complaints. I've built a lot of calm plans, and I builtsome pretty terrible com plans. I I can tell people exactly what E can allowsme to tell people what not to do. So you you said at the top. There wecompensation is is the major reason that sales people do what they dio. Alot of the time is Thio earn money, but it's one of the most misunderstood andpoorly executed functions of their job. It's almost an afterthought for a lotof people. We spend all of this time on positioning and marketing and andprospecting and cold calling. And once you finally get to the end result,oftentimes people don't know how much they're going to get paid on deals. Uh,and so I that ties in with my role currently a quota path. But it's been along journey to get there. Yeah, I think that it's so powerful,and I really I mean, I felt it may be anecdotally, but I don't know that I'vehad it crystallized just like you said, because the sale cycle often timesbecomes the focus and the end state is what you hope you get Thio and then theconversation comes there. But there's not a lot of time, even in negotiationsearly stage, because a lot of times, especially a lot of our members areearly stage companies or growth stage companies that sometimes you're beingoffered roles where it says, You know, here's the starting place, but we'llfigure it out as we get in. And I think that gray area can be so confusing. Andso I would love for us to take this conversation a bit from both, you know,SDR, the actual reps who are maybe informing this and what they should bethinking about, as well as the people who are responsible for creating thesethat organization, similar to roles that you've had in the past for yourleading teams having to develop these. So you know, let's maybe start withLet's start with the leaders of groups and let's talk a bit about maybe someof the pains we'll get. People seem like virtual head nodding as they'redriving in the car right now. Yes, that is my pain. And then we'll talk aboutsome of the actual reps and things they can think about. Yeah, certainly.Excellent. Alright, so talk to me about like where do you start with anorganization when it comes with? Let's design a calm plant, right? I'mbuilding out of sales organization. Or maybe I have one, but I'm revising this.What is the starting place? Yeah, so really, the starting place that Ialways ask is, What do we want? Thio? What do we want to get out of ourcompensation plan? Oftentimes, the answer is sales bond. That's fine.That's great. OK, wonderful. That revenue. Do we owe logo? Like what?What do those mean in sales? Yeah, exactly. And that's That's the followup. Question is, what does that mean?...

Does that mean revenue doesn't mean a RR doesn't mean total contract value? Does it just mean logos? Oftentimes,with with small organizations, the average contract value the revenuedoesn't matter nearly as much. It's the new logos because there are raisingaround and they wanna have all of these fancy logos on their pitch deck. Sothat that's really the question is to say, like, Where do you want to get? Doyou want? Do you want to do revenue? Do you want to do a R R? Is it recurringrevenue? Do you find that most people know that answer For the most part,they know it, but they haven't really like, thought about it a ton. Theyhaven't really been and even really asked that question of themselves. Theyjust they think in their head sales. You know, we wanna generate revenue.And then when I say Okay, is it is it long term? Revenue is a short termrevenue. Is it upfront revenue? And so once we define that, that's when we candive a little bit deeper into the how to compensate your reps accordingly. Yeah, and when I think about quota path,we'll talk about that because that's you know, that's the world you'reliving in right now. Who is a good customer for you all. What are thekinds of companies that you're working with? And, you know, is there a sweetspot that you all play? Yeah, for sure. So my it may just be because this is mybackground. Um, but where we've seen the most success is in in those highgrowth high tech startups, they don't necessarily have to fit that we have.Some of my favorite clients are our solar panel sales companies, but ah,lot of the high growth high tech people who are adding sales reps. people whoare trying thio standardize their compensation, make sure that they'recompeting, especially if you're in a competitive market like Atlanta or likein Austin. You have toe to make sure that your competitive but fair and andmake sure that the sales makes sense for the company and the reps. I'm curious when we think aboutstructuring a plan. I think that comp can certainly I think many people getinto sales for the earning potential right and the motivation around that Ihave found. And maybe you can correct me or validate here. But I have foundthat money or compensation can mean different things to it can mean valueof an employee could mean that I am being wanting to be retained. It couldbe the winning aspect of it, right? I'd like to have incentives that I'm goingafter. Are there certain aspects that you look at as like an individual levelof SDRs or what a team is comprised of when you're thinking about comp? Yeah,So when thinking about motivation of sales people, whether it's SDRs or or aes, even VPs of sales, I look at kind of ah matrix of motivation and you havepublic versus private and money, cash versus pride. And so you have thesefour quadrants that people generally fallen. Repeat those. So you have money,just pride and then public versus private public recognition versusprivate, maybe compensation or boys or girls. Eso So public money is kind ofthe easiest example. It's the person who drives the fast car and where's thefancy watches and wants everybody to see all of the money that they make.And that's a really big driver for some sales people. And kind of the, You know,the hackneyed view of a salesperson is like, Oh, they're exactly yeah, Andthen you have the private money people who are actually a really good portionof sales people in some of the best salespeople. They're the people whowanna have a nice house who wanna wanna have nice things, who don't care howflashy it is. They just want to drive. Ah, nice, reliable car because it zgood for them and it may be more expensive. And then you have the publicpride people who are the ones who smile as they're ringing the gong or lovewhen they get shout outs publicly and...

...the private pride People are the oneswho who hold themselves accountable, who hit their quota every month becausethat's their job. And they want Thio. You know they feel good aboutthemselves when they do that. So there's all different ways ofmotivating and compensating those people a swell. And do you recommendwe'll stick with the high growth, tech oriented companies because you know, toyour point that that's where you all see at least a good portion of yourcustomers. Do you see that a company should have a singular com plan, orshould it be determined and and vary based on what the individual reps mightneed? And I think that's my hypothesis is, if you're managing 45 people likeyou did in your last gig, that might be really challenging. And so I'm curioushow you get enough structure that it makes sense for a company, but enoughflexibility that individuals feel seen and appreciated and and, you know,cater to, so to speak. Yeah, for sure. So I'm a big proponent of standardizedcompensation plans across the board. Um, it could be for specific role. So youhave a senior you have a junior SDR senior SDR Junior, a senior 80. Buteverybody who has the same title has the same base. Salary has the sameexact compensation plan. I'm a big fan of this for a bunch of reasons.Transparency for reliable are our consistency. So you know what you couldearn when you move into the next role on why you would do that. But the majorone for me is, is that if you have different plans for different people ingeneral now, I'm not accusing anybody of doing this intentionally, but youend up under paying specifically women and people of color. And so there's abunch of studies about that. I encourage everybody to take a look attheir compensation plans. If they're not standardized, ask yourself why andoftentimes it's Oh, they negotiated this base salary and they they caremore about this than that. And that may be the case. But take a look at it andunderstand that you may be under paying specific people. I love thatperspective honestly, and I'm a woman in business and hadn't really thoughtabout it. In that sense of the benefit of standardization, it creates aculture in which there's clear path for individuals they can opt in. If that'smotivating to them, I assume into a company or culture. And then I imagineit's a lot less headache for the manager, right? Like you, you're nothaving to worry about these nuances. It's pretty straightforward. Do youever find that there's pushback within negotiations to say that this is likeour standard model across all employees like, Is that ever a deter? Yeah, it is.It absolutely is. And when I joined Trend Kite, I was the second saleshigher and the 10th employees at Trend Kite and ended up growing a team with250 employees before, on acquisition a couple of years ago for $225 million.And so we. But we had the standardized plans the entire time when I joined asthe second sales higher. I was trying to negotiate mawr and they were like,No, we have a standard standard compensation plan, even though I wasthe second person, so I think just laying that out as as a standard fromthe beginning and having a good explanation behind it. It's not becausewe don't want to pay you Mauritz because of those things that Imentioned Transparency. Ah, clear career trajectory. You wanna earn more?Okay, come in, Kill it for three months you'll get promoted to a senior A andyou'll make even more than what you're trying to negotiate. I love that. Thatto me is is so powerful. And especially as we see a necessary but increasingconversation around pay inequalities to be ableto have. This is somethingthat's very tangible for people to do to review your compensation plans andto set forth something that says We're creating equal playing field. Everyoneis gonna have the same earning potential to start and performance thatis going to drive how people are earning. I think that's fascinating. Ihave seen actually an interesting model, a swell, Yeah, A couple oforganizations I've seen have an interesting model where you can. It'snot a negotiation, but it's a you get to choose your base salary and yourbase salary in software. Specifically,...

...there's kind of this rule of thumb offive x on target earnings to quota, So if you're making $100,000 per year,your five X would be you'd have a $500,000 a year quota, and that wouldbe it. Then that's on a 50 50 base and commission split. So I have seen acouple models where it says, like you can take whatever base salary you want.You can have $100,000 base salary, which means you have $100,000 ofcommission potential. But you're quote is a million dollars a supposed totaking half of that? You have half the quota. And so I have seen that modelbefore, which is interesting. It allows somebody to kind of choose their owndestiny. I haven't done any research as to the whether that does away with oror encourages pay inequality. So I'm not gonna not going to blanket approvethat or or ah, support that. But it is something toe investigate. I do likethe at least the optionality of that and making it around expectation. It'snot around candidates willingness or likelihood to negotiate. It's based ontheir ability to contribute to the organization's goals. And so I thinkthat, you know, to your point we won't make any blanket statements here. But Ilove here in the variability, and I really like that. It's it makes sense.But it's a math equation that we're putting forth here and an individualcan then often to say, Do they feel capable of contributing to that mathequation? Yeah, do you find as you go into organizations? Let's sayretroactively like right. It's one thing to come into the beginning andhelp somebody set it up because there's not the baggage that comes with it. Butyou come into an organization that maybe has their handful of employeesset for They are all over the board as faras compliments. I imagine it'semotional to try to inflict change. Change is never easy. So how how do youall see that done and just quote a path? Help with any of that? I'm curious fromlike a I think it's your observations. But then also just the business thatyou're in. Are there certain things that you guys were solving for withthose things? With that? Yeah, absolutely. I mean, with within thequarter path app, you can create different plant different com plans,assign them out to specific people if you have those unicorn plans, or ifeverybody has a different plan, you can assign those out to two specific people.With that said again, there are instances where everybody having aslightly different plan makes sense for account managers. They're not all goingto have the exact same book of business, or it may be different quarter byquarter. And so there there are instances where everybody may have tohave a slightly different different quota. And so those air, you know,again something that could be handled within quota path. But the actualchange management is is difficult going in from I've seen instances oforganizations where one person is earning a 25% commission on all of thedeals they close, and one person is earning a 6% commission on all of thedeals. They close, and one person is going to be upset, and the other personis likely to be happy unless you just blower them all down to that 6% 1person. So it can be a very painful process for sure. Is there a certainpoint in a company's growth outside of at the beginning? Do it right. But isthere a certain point which you see that most organizations are findingthat have to adjust? Or is there no one specific recipe? Yeah, I mean, part ofit is as soon as the whoever runs your compensation starts complaining enoughabout it because having to dio having to dio 25 or 30 different compensationplans, you know different commission rates is okay. But often times I'll seesituations where somebody gets paid on the number of logos they close, andsomebody gets paid on the amount of revenue one person gets paid on a areare they? The person gets paid on MRR, and so the standardization tends to berequired, at least to an extent at a certain point. And it seems to be kindof the same stage where you break off into two teams to sales teams, which isgonna be your like, You know, once you get past 10 sales people, you're likelyto have two separate sales teams. And...

...that's around the time whenstandardization makes more sense. Yeah, that's that's fascinating to me,and I I I'm curious to hear the response from our audience because thisto me, is so timely, especially if people are going. If they work on acalendar year going into, you know, cute for fiscal planning for the nextyear and how they start to look at this. So we've talked a bit about theorganization and the leaders of teams. How they set this fourth. I'm curiouswhat resource is or maybe quarter path has, or that you've seen that theactual individual contributors might drive around, you know, conversationsor calm plans and and how they should be looking at this. Yeah, for sure.It's fascinating the number of times I have conversations with individualcontributors or just sales or sales reps who don't really understand theircompensation. They don't understand their com plan. They know that they getpaid a certain amount, but it's so confusing or it's so complex that theydon't they don't really get it. I know that if I close the deal, I earn about8% on it. Unless it's a two year deal and then I turn mawr. But I don'treally understand exactly how much and so that transparency is very the lackof transparency. It could be very de motivating for reps and so I understandif if you're listening to this and you say, Yeah, I don't understand how I getpaid. Let me know. I always tell people you could go to meet with graham dotcom. There's my calendar, but we I look a calm plans and dissect them andunderstand them every day. And we have, ah, free version of quarter path thatallows reps to go in, enter their calm plans in track their sales even greatwith Salesforce or CRM s and and track their sales in their their commission.Accordingly, I, as an individual contributor, had a, um, Excel document.I still have it on my, uh, it's been turned into a Google doc. Exactly. Andthat's that's what lot of I call myself and others like me. Sales nerds. That'swhat a lot of sales nerds end up with. Is this this Excel document thatthey're using to track their own sales, their own commission and hope thattheir their organization is doing the same? So that's one of the things thatwe're looking to do It at Quarter path is provide that transparency across allpeople. So not just the director of sales ops, who does all of this thiscalculating but each individual rep as well. So encourage your your sales opsperson to check out a tool like quote a path as, well Quota path. I mean, Ithink that that gives the transparency. But say somebody is not to the pointyet or they're not using that tool like that. And organizations who do you findor where should the responsibility lies it on the SDR? Is it on the team lead?Is it on the organization as a whole to report out what earning should be? Yeah.I mean, I think that each person is in control of their own earnings.Obviously, the organization should get it right. But I would recommendeverybody know exactly how much they get paid and ensure that it's correct.Because I I if I had to ask your your listeners how many of them have had aNen correct commission check? I guarantee that almost everybody isnodding along right now. I certainly have a few times. Yeah, same. Same here.And I think that you know, the one thing that I personally am veryfascinated with in quote a path or any tool and that is helping with this isthe transparency across the board. I can't tell you how many hours of mytime as a sales person has been spent in that damn Excel sheet and organizingit emails back and forth meetings to, you know, lay out things. Negotiations.It probably is at least a week's worth of time annually, if not mawr, that hasspent figuring out the comp model versus doing the job that would help meget what I want to be. And so, as I'm thinking about this of just efficiencyof scale and transparency and all the...

...benefits that come with that how thataffects an organization, especially those that are high growth, to focus onwhat they should be focusing on rather than some of the back end nuance. Oh,yeah, no, it it sucks. It sucks doing commission. I've done it for teams.I've done it myself. Ah, lot of that also starts at the top starts at the VPlevel of somebody building that the compensation plan, making sure that itis easy enough to understand and not overly complex. I always in mycompensation in my complaint, consulate calls with people I'll often just saylike no simplify, they'll be like, Okay, So we need to compensate on the numberof years that they closed the deal for they pay it and how many, See? Nope,Simplify it, simplify it, simplify it like I know that quota path allows youto automate all that stuff. But your reps should still have a pretty goodunderstanding of how much they're going to get paid on a deal. Um, even withoutsoftware, I love that when we think aboutmotivation of reps like it gets so complicated at times, I could imaginevery de motivating. It's It's almost It's not worth the headache, even ifthere's earning potential there. It's not a headache for me to spend timehere. So outside of calm plants, you know, we talked about the publicprivate. We talked about some of the, you know, the cash versus pride. Arethere any other components that you think about when it comes to motivationand specifically in a team, I think about a team of 45. I don't mind. Thelargest team I've ever worked in is a team of five small professionalservices. So 45 member team blows my mind, especially from a salesperspective, so I'm curious of what are some of the ways that you see Com plantor not that you're keeping teams motivated and excited and, you know,driving towards the goals. Yeah, certainly. And trust me, I could nothave run a 45 person team without without, ah set of wonderful managers.I worked with a bunch of wonderful managers throughout that time, so don'tdon't think that I was doing it alone. I I always tell people I was a amediocre str I'm a pretty good SDR leader and I understand the math andwhatnot behind it. But get me on a cold call and I'm actually just like, justOkay, So, um, but when it comes to motivating those those people, reallythe money is is there for everyone. But you have thio drill down and understandeach individual person. And what what they really care about? Yes, the publicand private. The money versus versus pride, but sitting down andunderstanding each person. And so at the beginning of every month, I wouldsit down with each one of my STRS, which again was, ah, a bit of a choreevery, uh, every month dedicated pretty much a half week Thio it and we'd setgoals. We'd sit down. We'd set up because we had such a quick careertrack. A tranq itis Well, like what are you hoping to do? Or you don't wanna bean SDR forever. That job sucks. E mean it just it's just not the most e. It'sjust it's not. It's all the hunting without getting getting to experiencethe kill. And that is just so everybody does the SDR job. Everybody with anasterisk there does the SDR job because they want to move into a close on dso.I would sit down with them and say, Okay, let's set goals to get you tothat next role and to get to the next role is it really accomplishes bothboth the money side and the pride side because, hey, you got a promotion. Italways feels awesome to get a promotion, so I would sit down with them, setthese goals and then translate them into actual outcomes. And so, for mySTRS, their quota was centered around two things centered around exhales,accepted opportunities and revenue. And so I would say, Okay, where we good,where we bad What? Where did you struggle? How can we use your skills?Use where you're You do really well, Okay, maybe you're really, really goodat setting demos, but you're not very good at having those demos show up. Andthat's where you fall flat, eh? So how...

...can we use your demo setting skills tohelp improve your demo show skills and break that down and help them? Um,really look toward the future for themselves? E. I love that I like thethought around breaking down with the sales processes. Where do you win andhow do you use your areas? You win toe help where the areas you have a deficit.And I don't I don't know that everyone thinks of it that way. I think that andthat's a really good framing, in my opinion, as somebody that's led teamsto help somebody make it tangible of them, it's not just go fix this. Onething is how do we innately lean into the things you're excellent at to helpovercome that deficit? That's great. Exactly. All right, let's talk aboutsales trajectory. Career trajectory SDR. We talked about that. And what shouldit look like? You know. I know you. You mentioned that SDR like That's notanyways dream gig. It's where you start, but maybe we can shine a little light,and I'm sure it varies by organization. But what does the path look like? Maybewhat does the compensation path look like? If we could get into some of that?Yeah, certainly. So I would lay out the compensation. Are not sorry. Thecompensation? Well, we would lay that out as well, but I would lay out thecareer path for SDRs during the first interview. Well, the first time Iinterviewed them much as a phone screen, and then I would interview them, and soI would lay that out for them from the very beginning. And I think that wasone of the major reasons we were able to hire such hi talent in in Austin onthe str team. When we look around, some of the top top sellers in Austin cameup through the SDR organization is Trend kite, and so I would lay that outfrom the very beginning, and for us, it was a very clearly defined you start inthis role after a certain number of months we expect you to get to thisrole, but it's not just like a you know. After four months you're promoted. It'sa These are the clearly defined goals, and I think that's a major component aswell. Because oftentimes people who are a quote, culture fit get promoted aheadof the people who are maybe just very good at their job. But don't don't fitthe mold of what you'd expect somebody. And so we have these very clearly laidout goals for you to go from an SDR to a senior str that on average takesabout four months or five months can't over at this point. A few years ago,the fastest you could do it is three months because you have to hit threequotas in a row and then in order to move from a A senior SDR to a junior A.You have to do these five things, and one of them is is learn how to demo theproduct. And so part of the career path thing is adding certain skills thatyou'll need in order to be successful in the next role and possibly droppingskills. So at a drink, right, we had ah, prospecting specialist role, but thenwould turn into a scene era, turn into an SDR and then a senior str. And bythe time you hit the senior SDR role, you weren't expected to do anyprospecting because that was being fed to you by the prospecting team. But itstill helped build your skill set, and I gave extreme empathy. I'm surefor the people who were still in those roles and understanding the workthey're doing, like I I really like that. Ah lot. I'm curious A trend kiteand I'm sure this was the case. But I imagine you had to hire, you know,people not necessarily being home grown from all of those roles. You had tohire somebody at a a role net new and so in bringing them in. How do you Howdid you approach that? Or was there any specific things that you might havedone around on boarding them? Because somebody that maybe started as aprospecting specialist that got to an 80. They have a very specificunderstanding up to your point. Your culture, how you guys train. Was thereanything specific that you all do when you interject somebody bid trajectory.Yeah, we we tried not to. We tried Thio higher, higher, entirely internally,but that that could be tough because you have toe. It's just like any dealcycle. You have to answer a lot of...

...stuff at the top of the funnel in orderto get it down to the bottom of the final out I can think of. I think Iknow of one person, a guy named Cam Smith who is still at Trend. Kite wasacquired decision. So he's, I think he's still at decision, and he was oneof our very first prospecting specialists. Became an inbound, MDR SDRoutbound senior. Now he's, like, moved all the way up the chain in the accountexecutive line. And so, But for the most part, we did have to hire thoseexternal folks. And so we tried to do kind of a crash course in all of thoseroles in the prospecting role in the STR role and the demo ing roll, it tooka while. It took a while for them, toe be fully ramped. It might have takensix months for somebody to be a fully ramped E that was hired externally,whereas it would only take two months for a str who came in Thio come in andbecome fully ramped. So one of major reasons we tried to avoid it, but yeah,we did like a crash course. I think the first two months, two or three months,they were effectively SDRs and instead of it taking a year to get there, ittook them two months. Yeah, I'm fascinated just personally. You saidyou were the second sales person and the 10th employees creating structureamidst ah, high growth environment could be very challenging, right?You're feeding the beast while also trying to build the foundation toe tobring in new members of the team and any tips and tricks of how you balancethat, Because, I mean, I'm sure some of it right now it sounds lovely. I'm surethere were trips and falls along the way, like right behind site. You canalways, you know, make it make it a better story. But I'm curious of justhow you balance that about like, knowing that you wanted to havehomegrown talent, for instance. That's a pretty strong perspective, and itsounds like it's sort of dual really well, knowing what? The timelines Wheretoe step to the next thing in creating that structure was that your team wasit in partnership with HR? I'm just curious what that looks like. Yeah. Imean, part of it was done kind of accidentally because of cost reasons.It's a lot cheaper to hire somebody out of college and train them to be ahseller than it is to hire a seller and have them, you know, pay them a bigbase salary and and, um, have them closing deals. And so part of it wasdue to that being a scrappy startup, but some of it was intentional. We wehad come from actually, most of the organization when I joined had comefrom, ah, competitors. A company called meltwater, uh, that competed directlywith with Trend Kite and I came from a different competitors working at NASDAQat the time. And so we've seen kind of in the industry what was working inwhat had worked. And so we were able to build a team and build a structurebased on what we had seen successful in the past. And then a lot of it wasexperimentation guy who was one of the very first employees as well named K.Fujita. He is one of the most brilliant, like, experimental minds because he'ssuper creative. But he's also organized enough to say, like, Okay, let's lookat this A B test and see Did the did sending this type of email or this timeof day produce better results, or did it produce the same or worse results?But he's able toe to come up with those ideas. So I would say that it's, ah lotof just try a land error, but quickly iterating on it. And, yeah, we had alot of failures as well. We tried to do a pod structure where we matched up toSDRs with three a es that failed pretty miserably for us. We tried a bunch ofdifferent things. Yeah, I love hearing these stories and especially, you know,when you were there from the beginning to the point that it's scaled, I couldprobably sit here all day and jam with you on this. And given that we havepeople you know, for their their half hour hour here, we'll jump right backinto to our topics so Graham. I guess you know if if you're talking to ouraudience, think about the members of...

Revenue collective or other salesleaders gonna be. Aren't members that are listening to this going into Q forgoing looking at Q one next year? What are some very tangible things you mightsuggest that they dio when it comes toe planning and comp? Yeah, for sure. Takea look at your com plan and try to remove half of the different componentsor different. We call them path the different way that you get paid becauseyou could try to remove half of them. And I'm only half kidding there. Mostof the time. When I talk to people, there are four or five differentcomponents to the ways that people get paid and that can provide confusion andsometimes can provide the opposite of what you're looking. What you're hopingfor. Um, people try to game con plans, and sometimes they misunderstand. Andif they misunderstand, it means that they are doing the exact opposite ofwhat you want. I've talked oh, or organization where they said once we rolled out quota path peoplestarted closing two year deals and I said, Well, now you're paying them morethan twice as much for them. And they were like, Yeah, but they didn'tunderstand that. And so now they're closing two year deals, and I'm like,Why didn't you explain it better? And so try to cut back as many of thedifferent components of the complaint that you can and make sure thateverybody understands the complaints there so often it's They're notunderstood. Even if you feel like you built it well, or if your financeperson built it, make sure that it it's digestible. It's like trying to read.If it's like trying to read the terms of service for high iTunes, then thenit's not a good com plan. It should be very simple. Onda laid out very clearlyfor them. And so any general rule of thumbs I know you mentioned, you know,for instance, like a five X earning that you should see and then a splitbetween base and bonus or, you know, variable comp any other baselines thatyou would tell individuals or sales leaders here toe to be thinking off 75%of my complaint. Consul to these, these two rules come up, which is number oneexactly what you said. Take the on target earnings kind of in half. That'syour your base salary and the other half is your commission. Then take youron target earnings multiply by five. That's what the quota should be.Obviously, there are a lot of exceptions to that if they're sellingprofessional services or if they're selling multiyear deals. But that's agood starting point for you. The second one is on SDR compensation. There aretwo pure forms of SDR compensation. There is the pay them for every coldcall they make or pay them for every deal, every dollar of the deal thatgets closed. Anything that isn't one of those two is not going to be an exactscience, not saying you shouldn't use those. In fact, I paying everybody forevery cold call they make isn't right. And paying people for revenue theygenerate isn't right. If you have a sale cycle, that's more than my role isis 100 days. But just trying to find the middle point there, where you havesort of a new indicator or a litmus test of there is good revenue here sofind if you aren't going to compensate them on cold calls or revenue, find amid point that is very, very clearly defined. What an opportunity is, what ademo is, what a qualified meeting is and try to make it as far as possible. I love this transparency science, Iheard you say, making it an exact science, trying to make it an equationlike right, Let's not Let's remove emotion or this feels good. Let's putit truly in tow. What someone needs to contribute and then consistency acrossthe board. Those air things I've taken out of this that I I don't know that Iknew coming into it. So I am grateful for the day. The time today, Graham andI have no doubt that our audience is gonna be pumping out these reallytangible and actionable insights. So thank you. Yeah, of course. Happy Thio.Happy to join you today. Awesome. So, last question for you if people want toget in touch with you. You said that...

...you you work with a lot of the revenuecollective members or other folks out there. How should they find you? Yeah,absolutely. If if you are a revenue collective member. Um, it's GrahamCollins on there. You can you can DME Or even in my, uh, in my bio. I have alink to my calendar if you're not a revenue collective member. I mentionedit earlier, but meet with graham dot com. Is my calen Leah's well and sofeel free toe book Sometime there. I'm also on LinkedIn and e think it's justlinked in slash Graham Collins. So you're a searchable is what I'm here. Iam. I am well optimized for the engine. There. There is a Canadian guy who ownsgraham Collins dot com. If he's listening to this, I would love to buythat from you first. Yeah, but then it's just a bunch of EnglishmenEnglishman named Graham Collins. And then there's makes Does Ring veryEnglish. So I see that. All right, Graham, this has been great. I am soglad that we had a member of our sponsors team quota path, and we'll seeyou again next time. Take care. This is Casey. Let Gordon and I'm your host.All right? That's a wrap on another great revenue collective podcast. I amso grateful that Graham Collins chose to join us. You heard it from himdirectly. Go to meet with graham dot com to find out more about him and findtime to meet with him. This'll episode was brought to you by quote a pathquota path is the first radically transparent and and compensationsolution from sales reps to finance. Get started for a free quote, a pathdot com and your next commission cycle could be totally automated. I have tosay, I wish I had known about quota path in a past life because that soundspretty darn good. All right, this is Casey. Let Gordon I'm your host. I'mgrateful you tune. Did see you next time.

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