The Pavilion Podcast
The Pavilion Podcast

Episode · 8 months ago

Ep 60: How To Manage-Up In Your Career w/ Nalin Vahil from Asana

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Ep 60: How To Manage-Up In Your Career w/ Nalin Vahil from Asana

Part of the TGIM (Thank God It's Monday!) series hosted by Tom Alaimo.

All right, everybody T g. I am. ThankGod it's Monday. Welcome back to the revenue collective podcast. I'm TomAlaimo. This is the show where we help revenue leaders to up level theirskills and find the strategies to take the next step in their career. I amhappy to be with you today and excited to get into the podcast before we getinto all the great content. I want to give a quick shout out to our sponsor.This month Sponsor is six cents six cents. The number one accountengagement platform helps you identify accounts that are in market careersolution. Prioritize your efforts, engage buyers the right way with highlyrelevant messaging and measure what actually matters. But the six centsplatform. You're able to get into more deals. Improved win rates increaseoverall pipeline and optimized budget. Spend to learn more. Visit six centsdot com slash revenue. Collective for today's guest. Really excited. I gotstolen vehicle. He is the head of commercial mid market sales at Asana.You've probably heard of them. They have had a meteoric rise in the lastfew years. Was that box before that and kicked off his correction in the recordindustry has got some great stories. And the main topic for today is how toup level and manage up in your career, whether you're reporting to a managerto the board, to the CEO or someone else. Uh, it's a really great softskill that you need to learn in order to accelerate your career. So I had agreat time chatting with knowledge, actually met him through the revenuecollected last year. So, please, without further ado, I'm gonna get youstraight into my conversation with knowledge. Enjoy. Uh, all right.Welcome to the revenue collective podcast. Now, Linville. Good evening.How you doing? How's it going, Tom? I'm doing well. How are you doing? I'mdoing good. I'm doing good. You're calling in from the from the greatRocky Mountains. A. That's right. It's actually much warmer here now than itis in San Francisco. So you'd be surprised. I think I would be jealousif you guys right now, but I'm actually not so jealous. Yeah, you You That'salways, like, kind of a fun way to start a podcast or sales calls, forthat matter in a pandemic, because you never know where people are, you know,it's not necessarily where they're linked in says or anything like that.So it sounds like you've been kind of taking advantage of the pandemic andbeing able to see family and, you know, travel around a little bit. Totally. Ithink it's been a unique opportunity. Certainly. It's been a tough time for alot of people, but the best thing you can do is try to see the silver liningand things. So yeah, I mean, it's been great. We had to Seattle in a few weeks,so it'll be nice to be out there, too. So just taken in the mountains and thescenery and things like that along the way. I love it. I love it well. There'sa lot of things that I want to get into with you today and and, you know, in afairly short amount of time. So I want to just get straight on into it. Youhave a really interesting career art, but really, in the beginning of yourcareer, I find to be really interesting. You know, there's not a lot of salesexecs that I meet that started in the music industry. Um, and I'm sure youstill probably still have a strong passion for music. So, you know, I see.Like you did artist management at Runaway Grace. You were a founder andCEO of Brick Road music. Like, could you tell me a little bit about theearly days of your career and what led you into into the music world? Yeah,totally. I think for me when I left college, I knew that I was interestedin technology more so because I like this idea of building and buildingquickly. And something about tech was just super attractive for me in that.And I always had this, like Rosie eyeglasses of what it looked like to bean entrepreneur. And that was something that I was really interested in. AndI'll be honest. I fell into sales more so because I was just trying to dowhatever it was to get into Tech. And naturally, I think, is their entrylevel. There's actually a lot of opportunities for sales. So that's howI found myself first into sales. I...

...think as I started doing sales, themost immediate thing that I wanted to figure out was like, how do I get goodat this as quickly as possible? Because it was one of those roles where youwere making 100 and 50 cold calls a day, three hours of talk time. You're notallowed to leave the office. So I was like, I need to figure this out so that,you know, I'm not getting 100 and 50 knows a day. I need one or two. Yes, isto be able to get me through it. So my friend was actually in a band at thetime and I said, Hey, why don't you let me just start negotiating rates for youat different venues and basically just treat this like a sales cycle for youand it was actually really successful. I helped him raise some of his ratesfrom, like, $200 up to $700. But I think with the thing that actually gaveme this really interesting light bulb was you looked at the local scene andit was just this really antiquated way of managing reputations both for venuesand for artists like artists. The way that they actually would try to getgigs is like they just cold call. They'll cold call places. They'll emailplaces. They say, Hey, can I play? And then if you're a venue, they have noidea If they're good, they just say, Yeah, sure, come on in And theyliterally just rinse and repeat. And I've heard horror stories from theseguys saying, like, they'll share me this mixtape and then they come in andthey literally play this mixtape and then they just like lip sync over thatspecific mixtape. So, like it was just like, really, really just like badprocess in terms like, how do you build this reputation? And I think for me Igot into a situation where I think I was so excited about this idea of beingan entrepreneur that, you know, after I started building a little bit of demand,I said, Hey, I want to I want to go after this and go after it full time.So I had actually gotten in touch with People are potential angel investors.They said I need to prove it in a bigger market. That's what made me movefrom Denver out to Los Angeles and focus on that for a year long storyshort, it unfortunately, didn't work out tons of learnings along the way.But I mean, to your point, I'm definitely very passionate about themusic industry. I do think that there's something to crack there in terms oflike, where is their opportunity for a new business model there? Because it isdefinitely one where they're just so reliant on this live music to actuallybe able to grow at this point. So yeah, anyways, a little bit of a tangent, butyeah, And then what? What led you to get to bring yourself over to kind ofquit the entrepreneurial route? Was it just like, hey, we ran out of money orwe don't see this going, you know, the distance And let's get, you know, intoa sales job like it was it Was it as simple as that? Yeah. No. So, um,definitely ran out of money, got around the funding, lost a round of funding,and I think I was at this point to where I learned a few things and one ofthe biggest things was, especially when you think about your career in yourfuture. It's so important to surround yourself with the best people and whoyou surround yourself with is the most important thing. Where I fell short inthe startup was how I selected my technical co founder, and I honestlydidn't know much about that at the time. The other thing that it helped meunderstand was that I did want to be a leader, and that was my long term goal.And that was like my ultimate long term goal. And I believed, after myexperience in sales, that there are two things that I needed to do to be areally great leader. One was, how do you influence persuade, articulatethese ideas and get people motivated and bought into these ideas? I thinksales is a really great career to be able to do that. Then on the other side,it's the basics of leadership. How do you recruit Retain lead top to yourtalent? So I knew that sales is a really interesting place for me to go,and when I started thinking about my opportunities for the next company, oneof the things that was important to me it was like, Hey, if I want to be agreat leader, follow the best leadership that I can find. So look fora great leadership. Look for a place where I felt like I could beentrepreneurial because I knew that's what got me out of bed every single day.And then I think this third piece was like, How do I accelerate a skill setof being a salesperson and being a...

...great salesperson as quickly aspossible? And I think Austin was this really unique opportunity because itwas still this early stage scene. But a lot of companies were starting to moveout there, and there's this unique timing of box where I had theopportunity of being one of the first aid is out there. I got to be a part ofthis founding team of the eighties, and I actually got to work the Austinterritory as well, too. So I got a lot of on site experience. I got a lot ofopportunity to actually be entrepreneurial and learned from someof the best. Aaron Levie is by far one of my favorite CEOs that I stillfollowed today. He's just such a legend. Exactly. Yeah, I love that. So you picktwo for two so far in your career in terms of, like, amazing tech companies,you know, going from box to asana and and as I'm looking through, right, like,on your linked and it's like, all right, you've been, you know, you're doingthings before, but you've been in tech sales for 5.5 6 years and are alreadybeen in leadership for for quite some time. And now are, I think, have youknow, half dozen or so managers under you, right? So, like, now you're you'renot even just a frontline manager anymore. You're, you know, kind of thatsecond or third tier. So, like, I'd love to hear more about how you wereable to develop your skill set and develop your career so quickly for someof the folks out there that, uh, you know, know that they want to get intoleadership, might not be there yet, or are front line and and want toultimately get to a higher point. Yeah, there's a lot to unpack there. So letme try to be as like, high level as possible is first, and then you diginto where you think is most interesting. I want to say the firstthing is you know, my my background looks like it's probably like thisaccelerated journey for me, but I think there are a lot of failures along theway. And I think the most important thing that I can tell people is likewhat a real growth mindset is the ability to take full accountability andownership of failures and find what you can learn from those to make sure thatthose types of failures don't happen again. Like that's my opinion of wheretrue growth comes from. And you see so many sales people out there that everysingle person fails. But it is this difference between the people that fail,chalk it up to bad luck and feel the exact same way over and over againversus the people that look at what they can learn from it. So one of mybiggest failures, by far was my own startup, and I think like one of thethings that I learned from this was this idea of accountability andownership. The other thing that I actually learned that is not reallytaught at any place is number one like, How do you think about selectingcompanies and how do you think about it. And then number two, How do youactually like? Show your skill set and portray like where you want to go alongthis journey when you're at a company? And how do you flex your skill set? AndI think one of the latter pieces, Actually, both of them, I think, comefrom my learning and working my own startup because basically, it's thisidea of like, you're working for an investor because it's this idea of whenyou go and join a company first. When you're vetting companies, think ofyourself as the investor and you need to vet. This company is like, Is this aplace that I put my bed on because I'm spending a lot of my life over a periodof time, like just spending time purely at that company. Then once you're there,it's actually a flip side. It's like, Hey, this boss of mine, he actuallyjust invested in me. It's giving me six figures my salary to go sell or go likeprove that I can actually own this business. So it's my duty to be able toactually like, keep that person updated like you see that I mean If you weresomeone that invested money and someone you want to know where that money isgoing and you want to know frequently. That's the framing that I that I say Ithink is really interesting. But really like the key skills that you actuallylearn from. That's like, Hey, how do you select the right companies and thenumber two? It's almost this idea of like, How do you manage up? And I thinkmanaging up is something that's not really taught by any like any formaltraining in any way. And I actually think I actually really credit myfailures for that. Yeah, so tell me more about that. Let's talk about theart of managing up because to your point, I've had some privateconversations with folks, but I don't see it talked about or blogged aboutour podcast at about. So tell me how...

...you know, because that makes sense. Ifsomeone invested money in your business right, you're you are obligated and youwant to update them on how the business is doing, and that makes sense. Andit's the same case for your boss or maybe even your boss's boss, right?Like they they hired you, You know, they're keeping you on board. They arevery much the red tape for you to continue to grow within the company,right? If they don't give you the nod, then it's gonna be really hard for you.So tell me how you may have managed up in your career. Yeah, I break it downinto four really key principles and I'll talk about them one by one andgive you an example. Which one? One is communicate early and often like justover communicate. And that is something that a lot of people failed to do. AndI think a lot of the reason is because people feel like they crave autonomy.And the way that they do that is to say, Okay, I'm going to do my own thing, andthen I'll go into my one on one with my boss and then just assume that theyknow what to talk about. And I actually think a lot of autonomy is bred bytheir confidence and knowing that you know what you're doing. And a lot ofthat just comes from how do you actually just over communicate thethings you're focusing on the things you're working on and the updates alongthe way. It's It's no different than these investor updates that youactually see CEOs sent to their investors and you can just find themonline. And you see this level of rigor and thought process that they think oftheir business. And I think you showing that you have this ability to take onthat level of ownership is really important. So it's just communicatingas early and often as possible. So that's number one. Number two is. Howdo you think of explaining the root cause of problems? I actually thinkthat there's a lot of opportunity for people to think one layer deeper whenthey think that they have a problem. So, for example, let's say that you go toyour boss and you say that like, Hey, I think that there's this, you know, Iactually can't prospect like I can't figure out how to generate enoughpipeline, and that's all of it that's like, just leads so many differentopportunities of where you can spend your time as a manager that, like thatperson, has to be like, Okay, you're kind of asking me to help you solvethat problem all on my own without, like a leading process of how youthought through it yourself. If you actually go one layer deeper, you as aperson will also get way more out of it. Your skill development and the guidancefrom your manager is going to be a lot better from that of saying like Hey, Iactually look at, like, not being able to prospect. And I actually think thebiggest reason is I don't feel confident in these tools that I'm using.I don't know how to actually use outreach to its fullest. It is a prettycomplex tool, so it's very possible, but very powerful. So like being ableto do that gets you to this extra layer of a conversation that's so much moretactical and helps you grow so much more if you actually go this layerdeeper, this root cause the problem. It's also this other idea for and ormaybe talk about this in the next principle. But like a lot of people,when they think of being a leader, they say, like, Oh, I just want to go findproblems and just go solve them right away and that's what it takes to be aleader. And I think the issue oftentimes when they'll go to theirboss and they say, Hey, I'm ready for this leadership position and the leaderwill say like Hey, like, I'm not seeing enough clear examples in terms of youbeing a leader, and I think that that's as a result of like it's not thinkingof the root cause of that problem and not solving for the right things at theend of the day. Number three is, uh, don't outsource your thinking to yourboss and I think it's taking that exact same scenario that I mentioned before.And it's like propose solutions. Don't propose the problems and think throughthose potential solutions, and that will give you two things like one isthis autonomy idea, like a manager will look at that and be like, Oh my God,this person actually really thought through exactly what they want to doand how they're trying to solve. The problem is the most coachable person Ican think of. The other thing is, let's say that you're actually trying to gosolve a problem to try to prove yourself as a leader. You come up withthese solutions, you will immediately have the first right to go and try tosolve those problems. You'll immediately be the person that the bosswill start thinking of of saying like I...

...want to give this person moreresponsibility because they're actually thinking at that level deeper. Andthere's solution oriented that impacts the culture that impacts, like howyou're actually able to go solve problems. I mean, there's this level ofcritical thinking that I think just up levels yourself as much as possible toand then my last one, which I think is really important and actually justladders into all these other ones. You should know your boss's priorities andtheir top three priorities specifically at any given time, and you should knowhow you're contributing to those top three priorities. It's a reallyinteresting one also goes back to How do you communicate? What are youcommunicating about? What are the problems that are actually going to tryto solve, and are you even focusing on the right things? Any time you arefocusing, you know their top three priorities and how you're contributingto it. I promise you, you will have the stories Six months from now of like,your boss will actually come up with the stories for you. I'm staying here,all the things that you've done for me. So I think that that one's actuallyreally crucial. And it's surprising how many people just have no idea whattheir bosses top three priorities are at any given time. Yeah, I think thatis so good, and it ties to all those other things, right? Because all thoseother things the extra communication, trying to solve the problems on yourown things like that can help to, um, probably solve some of the problems ofyour leader. Have you ever heard of something called the canvas Strategy?No, I haven't. So, um, Ryan Holliday writes about it, and I think it's theobstacles the way, and I love a lot of his books, but it's It's essentiallythe thought that in order for you to progress, you want to clear the pathfor the people ahead of you, or at least the person directly ahead of theright. And like the more that you make that person look good, the more likelyyou know they are to kind of bring you along with them right and and andchoose you as kind of the right hand person to do so with. So it justreminds me of that, like trying to know. And maybe this is a dumb question. Buthow do you know you just just asking a one on one like, Hey, not like I wantto do my best job and keep in mind what you're focused on. Like, what are thetop three things that you care about this quarter this year? Is it as simpleas that? I think it is. I think it's, uh sometimes it's It's funny to justgive that easy of an answer, but I think it's as simple as having that Idon't I would be surprised if there's a leader that is that wants to guard whattheir top three priorities are to their reps because ideally, what a managerand a leader is trying to do is they're trying to set their goals andpriorities, and they're trying to align their team to be able to execute onthose priorities as much as possible. So maybe that's my leadershipphilosophy, and maybe it depends on one leader from the next. But I would behonestly surprised if you ask your boss is three priorities and they're notwilling to give it to you. Yeah, and do you going back to the communication?Let's say you get the priorities from your boss or your boss's boss. Do youdo any sort of update for folks like a weekly update? A more deeply monthlyquarterly update on not just your numbers, but how you're trackingtowards some of those other goals and other things that might be outside ofthe obvious. Here's what I did for percentage of quota or some of the highlevel things you see in Salesforce. Yeah, and I don't think that this needsto be overly formal in terms of how this communication comes out. But Ithink what's really helpful is understanding the other point of view,and a manager needs to know something's on a weekly basis. They need to knowsome things on a monthly basis and some things on a quarterly basis. The thingsthat they need to know on a weekly basis are the deals like name the dealsthat matter. Are you leveraging the resources and the team around you andthen just what's changed in the previous weekend. Why, like those arethe simple things that you need on a weekly basis. When you think about iton a monthly basis, You. That's when you start talking about like, Hey,what's broken, like what needs fixing and like, What are those problems thatyou want to help try to solve? It's also where you start thinking of like,this coaching plan. Are you actually making progress on specific skills,like where you want to focus your time and energy? And then I think when youthink of quarterly, that's when you get...

...this really good idea of performance.And I also think you get a really good conversation around morale andunderstanding like, Hey, what's the culture of the team, like, what's thesentiment of the team and where there are opportunities to grow? I think ifyou think about it in that framework, it kind of helps you think through,like how often or how frequent should you have different types ofconversations? Um, there is obviously, I think, a point to where maybe yourincessant at some point of like having similar types of conversations. Moreimportant, I think, is the intent of those conversations than the contents.And I think sometimes like the thing that you want to be careful of is thatthe intent of your conversation is not only to be able to get the raise or tobe able to get the promotion. The intent of the conversation is becauseyou are curious. You actually want to get better and you want to grow yourskill set. And you want to make sure that your boss believes that you areactually, you know, reaching your potential. Yeah, I love that. I thinkthat's great advice for anyone that's listening, especially folks that areearlier in their career and trying to find those ways to level up and addvalue to, you know, different folks across leadership. I'd love to pivotfor a second because you know, there's a lot of different types of folks outthere in the B two B and then the Sox world that will be listening to thisthat have different types of founders and different types of companies anddifferent types of selling motions, and asana is pretty legendary for justhaving an amazing product being product lead, especially the first few years ofthe company, and then kind of developing that sales motion over time.So I'd love to hear your perspective on being a sales leader at a product leadcompany at you know who. One of the founders is a legendary product personhimself, but I'd love to just hear what that experience has been like. Yeah,and I have nothing but great things to say about us on A I think I'd saywhat's really interesting is that this product like growth model, I think it'srelatively new. But I actually think the journey for a lot of product likegrowth companies is actually pretty similar. So Dropbox is probably one ofthe earlier ones that come to mind at last season, certainly was on thatjourney as well. And slack is one of the more recent ones. Where you see anacquisition of Salesforce is like a really successful outcome for them, andI think what generally happens is like your goal and this should be obvious.Goal is like how do you be customer first and prove out that you actuallyare providing real value to the customer and once you're able to dothat and when you do that in mind like a lot of this is like, how do you getthe end users bought in? And that they love it so much that it's actuallysomething that goes viral in the organization, where they want to shareit with other people because it drives this obvious value. And at that point,then the sales team can come in and they can actually tap into the adoptionthe success that people have already had. And actually, I mean, it starts,really, if this, like sales assist motion, where like a lot of times, whatyou're doing is just directing people to answer the questions that they need,And then over time, it gradually increases to be a little bit morecomplex. And realistically, the goal is to move further upmarket, strategicallyclose, larger deals. You saw slack do that really, really well. The lastseason's made a lot of progress on that as well, too. And certainly it's beeninteresting here too. So I think it's a really interesting journey. I thinksome of the philosophy is a from a sales perspective. When you look at Itjust makes a ton of sense. It's like, How do you actually build somethingthat's really customer first? And as a salesperson, it's so much moreenjoyable because when you talk to people, you know that they love it, andit also opens up this opportunity to help people actually try to prove outthe value before they make these massive purchases and investments,which is really not something that you can do in a pure, top down driven saleslead organization. Yeah, and I imagine the flip of that is, um that, you know,if it if it is more product lead, then there might be a little bit of a delayin building out. Kind of like that outbound strategy because you can relyon the product going viral at a company and, you know, end users really getting,you know, kind of attached to getting sticky with them. So, like, how doesone let's say if you know someone listening is new to a product leadcompany, maybe their director of V P of...

...sales like, how do you start buildingout that outbound motion? Is it different than doing it anywhere else,like do you have any advice on next? I know that you were helped to spearheadthat. Yeah, and certainly it depends on the company that you're at. And what isthe profile of, like who they work with? You know, you can look at slack and youcan see a lot of the journey that they were on, and I'll even speak to slackof specific phases and talk to some specific examples of what they wentthrough. Their first phase and a lot of this as a salesperson is like, What isthe timing of when you're joining? The first phase for Slack was like, We justneed to get to market coverage. We need enough salespeople to be able to managethe leads that are coming in like that. Is the round number one the first phaseof growth? It's a fun time for sure. Phase number two is like, Where do youstart thinking of customer focus? That's really where this conversationof I wouldn't even necessarily define it as outbound. I define it as beingproactive. That's really where that type of conversation comes in. It'slike, what are the segments that we really want to win in How do we definewhat the true ideal customer profile is that will yield the long term results?I think every product lead company like you will look at an enterprise C dealwhere you're getting the foot in the door as really long term, beneficialfor the company if you're able to prove adoption and growth. So I think thosetypes of conversations are really important, and I'm not going to sayit's one size fits all. You know, I think there's some companies that getso much growth that they don't necessarily even need to make this jumpup market. But I think what's more, more important as you understand yourcustomer focus and where you want to go. And I think Dropbox, for example.There's a perfect example where they made at least half a million dollarspurely based off of their consumer base alone, So do they need to move furtherup market? The answer wasn't actually the case, so that conversation dependson a company basis. Slack did want to make that move, so a lot of that waslike, Hey, how do we start intentionally moving in that direction?That's an entire company decision that has to happen. Product developmentneeds to move in that direction. Marketing, uh, the you know, even thewillingness to build a lot more cross functional teams because moving furtherup market, it's much more relationship oriented. It's much more coordinationinternally to actually make that happen, whereas on the on the other side of thespectrum, it's a lot less friction. It's much more transactional, and it'svery high velocity. So there's a very fundamental difference. And I thinkyour goal is How do you make that journey where then that's phase numberthree's. Then you start thinking about how do we think about operationalefficiency? And that's where you start getting to this point of saying okay.Not only do I need to make sure that we're focusing the right customers, weneed to be really effective and the narrative and the messaging and how weget in front of those people and that Phase three is when you really startthinking about maybe it's time to start building an SDR team. Maybe a start atthis time that we start thinking about operational efficiency in terms of likeour sales execution, specifically perfect plug for Gong if you wanted toshout out to going. No, we're not. We're not here to plug on, but yeah, Iappreciate the appreciate the plug. Anytime. Call me people. Um, so, yeah,I I love that. And I think there's some great examples like, do you personallysee this as kind of like the wave of the future? I mean, there's obviouslynamed some huge names Whether we're talking about asana or slack or at lastin the list goes on like, Do you see that? As you know, product like growthis going to be a huge thing for the next, like 5, 10 years. And SAS, Do yousee that being like a really big wave moving forward? I think so. Youcertainly see a lot of venture capitalists even think that way. Openview, I think, is the most popular one. If anyone who's listening to this wantsto go read a lot more about, like how this trend is evolving, Certainly goread them because they're very interesting. You know, I think youstart seeing some of the younger upstarts in some of the growth thatthey're experiencing. You look at a Web flow, for example, and they're justgetting this massive traction and...

...starting to compete in a veryinteresting way. And, you know, I think both from if you're a sales person andyou think of the companies that you're really interested in joining. But thenalso, as you think of how do you want to go attack a market and prove thatyou can actually be hyper efficient once you start getting these largerounds of investment? A lot of it just makes just so much sense is just somuch more efficient versus you know. You look at a lot of these sales leadcompanies, and there's so much percentage of revenue that is justgoing directly back into sales and marketing to be able to fuel this longterm growth. So I think it makes a lot of sense to be honest. Yeah, let's putit for a second to culture and leadership, because again, you know, Ithink if there's a few things that stand out about asana, you know one isthe great product and the product led growth, and I think another one is theculture. Uh, it's a pretty legendary culture in terms of, you know, not onlybeing somewhere where people love to work, but really having an emphasis onthe growth mindset that you mentioned earlier investing in, you know, thecoaching and development and training of the employees. So I'd love you totalk about a little bit about that. If people aren't familiar with Cassano'sapproach on that or even your personal approach on that and like the emphasisof having a growth mindset and training and developing your employees totally,I'll speak to a little bit of both. I've definitely been really fortunateto learn from some of the best leadership that I've gotten to workwith, and the sauna takes culture more seriously than I've seen at othercompanies. You know Dustin and Justin are co founders the way that they frameculture is treating culture like a product, and by that it means you haveto think about it very intentionally in terms of how you actually want toevolve the culture. It's not something that is just a by product, and you seea lot of companies when they think of culture and great Glassdoor reviews.That is something that is just a by product, and for us it's somethingthat's very intentional in terms of the direction that we want to go in. If Icould think of the most important aspect of what creates a culture, Ithink it's hiring. And I think hiring is by far the most important lever tounderstand what the future of the culture will look like. That makesobvious sense in a lot of ways. When you think about it, when you know ifyou're going to grow two x or three X, all the people that become the company,it's as a result of this hiring process and I think we we approach it in a lotof different ways. One of the biggest approaches for us, I think, is thisidea of diversity inclusion. Certainly that's a really big pillar in a bigfocus for us to make sure that we think about a really diverse workforce andthat that means in many different ways the way that I think about it as evenjust our sales team. Specifically, one thing that I think is reallyinteresting for us is like the way that we think about hiring is not about howdo we find people that fit our culture. We actually think about it as like howdo you actually add to our culture? And I think that's actually a veryimportant distinction and a shift, because for us we'll look at people.And instead of looking at years of experience in terms of how the up leveldo they fit that profile specifically, we'll be very competency focused. Butwe'll also have to leave this conversation being are being able toarticulate the skill that this person has that we think would up level therest of the team. And I think if you actually surround yourself by thosepeople and like that just exponentially grows to this point to where you join amid market team. Every single person around you actually has a unique skillset in terms of what they provide in different backgrounds, and it justnaturally creates this really collaborative culture where it's veryobvious that the sum is greater than its parts. You know, like some personmight be better at out bounding. The other person might be much better innegotiations, so it just makes obvious sense that they'd want to collaboratebecause every single person wins. In that scenario, So I think that's thepiece of culture that I talk about. That I think is really interesting.There's a ton of thought leadership...

...from Dustin and Justin that I'd highlyrecommend people read because there I don't know how to say that. They'rejust very They think about it so critically in a way that that Icontinually learn every time that they write about it and they put a lot ofintention and they're writing about about culture. So the other piece aboutlearning and development, I think that a lot of that again it comes from frontline leadership. I actually think a lot of that is like, Hey, how do youintentionally understand where you want people to grow and like what their owngoals are and how you're able to actually get people to those goals?Certainly we have a lot of company resources that I think are reallyunique. One thing that's really cool is we have executive coaching resourcesfor every single employee at Asana. Have you ever worked with an executivecoach? I actually just hired one this year coming out of my own pocket. It'sworth out of pocket to because It just really helps you clarify and articulateyour own goals. And it helps you work on these soft skills that you might notlearn from your manager, who's very focused on the sales side of things. SoI think it's for blind spots. I totally amazing for blind spots and like justself awareness and developing self awareness. That's like That's reallycool that we have. But I think the other piece is, is How do you actuallylike, Think of the vision in terms of like, What do you want this team tolook like a few years from now? And I think my personal vision is like, Ithink there are a few things I want this to be a team that has a networkthat is as a result of Asana like has a network for the 10 future jobs afterasana that you know that they want and those are only because of the networkthat they built and that definitely happens. You know, you look at thePayPal Mafia is a perfect but but like I think that's one piece. But I thinkthe other pieces, like if I think of the 1 to 2 years of time to whenthey're in a certain segment. We're working together. I want that to be atime where it unlocks their career trajectory and makes them think abouttheir career in a different way than they came in. I love it, and I couldtell from the way that you're talking about, you know, leadership and valuesand everything that you've mentioned that you're in SAS, that you're alsovery well read. I'd love to just here if, if there's any books that yourecommend you recommend to your team, you give out as gifts that you havefound yourself rereading or read recently or in some way has has kind ofshaped you. I'm curious, if any come to top of mind. Yeah, well, so I'll godown different themes and categories. Some are personal habits and mindset,my honest opinion, and this is funny. If you read enough sales books, younotice that like Chapter one and two are always about mindset, and I've readenough sales books to where I feel like my natural thing to do is to skip thatsection. But it took me enough time once I actually became a leader to whatI actually realized. Mindset is the most important thing that unlocked allof these other skills. So personally, I'm really interested in these booksthat are like Call it what you will, whether it's like self improvement or,you know, mindset books, philosophy speaking my language. Yeah, so I dolove the obstacles the way Ryan Holliday is a really great writer. Ilove a lot of his work. Atomic Habits by James Clear is a fantastic book thatI'd recommend for every single person I actually as a more like high level book.I've been recommending GreenLight's by Matthew McConaughey just because Iactually think it's really good about philosophy and thinking about how toapproach the business. If I think about sales specific books, I like the onesthat are much more rooted in science and like neuroscience and a little bitmore than why I do Don't get me wrong. There's some great so people have soldfor 20 years that have really great learnings. But books that I usuallyrecommend the science of selling by David Ha Field leadership books that Irecommend are actually broader leadership books that I'd recommend ishigh Output Management by Andy Grove. And then I also recommend salesLeadership By Keith Rosen. That's a really great book about how to actuallybe a really great coach. So those are some high level ones. If I could thinkof ones that are more interesting that...

...are in different categories alltogether, that you can translate over 11 rings by Phil Jackson is awesome,actually talks through. How do you think about up leveling culture indifferent stages and phases? And that's a new insight that I actually learnedthat there are so many sports people that are really great about doing that.And there's a lot of translation into into sports learnings that applydirectly into sales. So that's a great book that I recommend. And then Iactually, I really like this book. It's called Team of Teams by StanleyMcChrystal. I just recently finished that one, and it talks much more aboutthe complexity of organizations, And how do you actually have to rethinkthrough, like, how should you operate in different ways? That's great. That'slike, that's a great list for folks. Whether it's sales mindset, leadershiprelated. I am a firm believer as well like if I took someone from scratchthat had never sold anything before and was getting into that world like Iwould read some of the mindset, but like atomic habits. Ryan Holliday Somethings like that mindset by Carol Dweck. Before I would touch, Never split thedifference or Challenger sale or gaps selling or some of those kind ofstandard sales books. So I'm a firm Agree with you there, and there's a fewthat I haven't read from your list to that I need to check out. So Iappreciate that. Well, you know, it's funny because it will never work thatway. It actually turns out. So, James clear an atomic habits. Or maybe it'seven just in his personal blog. He talks through these like three levelsof mastery. So level number one is execution, and that's where a lot ofpeople who are new to a field they need to focus because that's where theyactually understand this second level, which is like the strategy piece. Andthat's where the second people level of people should start focusing. And thenthis third level is actually mindset, and that's what you can actually startdoing once you once you start to understand the fundamentals. So it'sactually apparently this natural progression of mastery, and I actuallythink that it's funny it takes takes reading through. A lot of those booksfirst actually realize, Oh, that mindset chapter and every single one ofthose was actually really valuable. Totally. And James, clear is is, uh,he's a genius. I'm like waiting for him to drop his next book whenever likeLike, Dude, let's get on to the next one. And Tom McAdams was great. What'snext in the bank? Totally so valuable, though Totally, totally true. So I knowwe're running up on time a little bit. The last thing I want to get into withyou is just obviously, we're here on the revenue collective podcast. That'sactually how we met roughly a year ago, so shout out to revenue collected forhooking that up. But I'd love to just hear any tips tricks like how you useit and how you network like you know, whether it's the slack community,whether it's a lot of one on one engagement, using the resources,whatever it might be, I'd love to just hear how you how you use the, uh,community? Yeah, I think the answer is B intentional. Certainly I get busy attimes when I, you know, ease off a little bit and don't focus as much onthe community. But when I actually do take the time to engage in thecommunity, it's been insanely valuable. I've met people like you. Of course. Ithink one of the best things is that it actually there is this. It's almostlike this badge, and it's kind of how people who are interviewing and maybe alittle antiquated, but they'll look at an M B A. And it's like at least thisbaseline level if someone that has a growth mindset that has thefundamentals. And I think that's true of the revenue collective I'vecertainly met. A lot of leaders certainly have gotten to interview alot of people as well, too. I am still hiring. So anyone in the revenuecollective confining, Uh, but, uh, where I found the most values in twoareas. One is definitely in the black community and keeping an eye on wherethey're like interesting questions to be able to help contribute the otherarea where I found a lot of value is actually the air table directory andactually, being a little bit more intentional about the people that I'mreally interested in reaching out to and actually just going out and doingthat, trying to learn from them and often times I think everyone's reallyreceptive. And I've actually gained...

...some mentors throughout the process. So,you know, again, I I think it's just it is how much you put it like you get outof it, how much you put into it. But if you put something into it, I thinkvaluable community. Yeah, I couldn't agree more. The power is in yourfingertips, and you just need to harness it. So now and you've beenyou've been generous with your time. I appreciate you sharing so many greattips for people really at all stages of their career, all different types ofcompanies. Um, you mentioned at the end there that you're hiring, So I'd loveto get let you give a little plug there for, um, where folks can connect withyou if they want. If they want a job, but to if they want to learn from you,if they want to meet you. What's the best place for folks to reach out? Yeah,Find me on LinkedIn. You can email me personal email. It's my first name dotLast name at gmail dot com or whatever is easiest for you. Come find me. I'mvery open to talk and talk about career pads. You know, wherever I can givesome advice, I'm happy to help. Awesome. And I appreciate you coming on. Yeah.Good catching up. All right. Thank you for checking out that episode. If yousaw any value, please head over to Apple. Subscribe. Leave a five starreview. That's what helps us to grow this show. If you'd like to connectwith me, I'm Tom. A limo and linked in the work over It gone. And obviouslyrecord this podcast every Monday for you One last shout out to our sponsor.This episode was brought to you by six cents powered by AI and PredictiveAnalytics. Six cents helps you unite your entire revenue team with a sharedset of data to achieve predictable revenue growth without further do. Arewe back to you next Monday? Thank you for listening. Yet after this week, say something Mhm.

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