The Sales Hacker Podcast
The Sales Hacker Podcast

Episode · 4 years ago

21. The Making of a Top-Producing Silicon Valley VP of Sales w/ Mark Cranney

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

On this 1x1 interview with Mark Cranney, the Chief Commercial Officer of SignalFx, we chat about the key elements of sales leadership and his journey to being a top VP of Sales.

One, two, one, three, three. Poe High folks, welcome to the salesacker podcast. Super Exciting Week. We've got mark cranny on the podcast this week, which is amazing. The first thing we want to do, as all reads, is thank our sponsors. So we've got to, as we will have through the fall. The first is air call, a phone system designed for the modern sales team. Air Call seamlessly integrates into your crm, eliminating data entry for your reps and providing you with greater visibility into your team's performance. Through it it's reporting. When it's time to scale, you can add new lines and minutes and use incall coaching to reduce ramp time for your reps. visit air call dot io forward salesacker to see why thousands of great companies like done and Bradstreet pipe drive and Uber Trust are call for them was critical sales conversations. And our second sponsor is outreach, DOT ioh the leading sales engagement platform. Outreach triples the productivity of sales teams and empowers them to drive predictable and measurable revenue growth by prioritizing the right activities in scaling customer engagement with intelligent automation. Outreach makes customer facing teams more effective and improves his ability into what really drives results. Hop over to outreach DOT IO forard sales haacker to see how thousands of customers, including cloud ere, glass door, Pandora and Zilo, rely on outreach to deliver higher revenue for sales wrap. So, without further ado, let's listen to mark cranny, who is very, very well known. He's mentioned in the hard thing about our things by Ben Horowitz, famous Silicon Valley Cro and VP of sales, and has built a number of companies well past the hundred million mark. Super honored to have mark on the show, so let's take a listen. Hi Folks, welcome to the Sales Hacker podcast. It's your friendly neighborhood host, Sam Jacobs. I am really delighted and honor to share the microphone today with Mark Cranny, who a lot of us have read about, know about, but who may be new to some of you folks. So let me give marks quick background. He's currently the chief commercial officer at Signal Fx, but prior to joining signal effects, mark was an operating partner at Andres and Horowitz Silicon Valley venter capital firm over six billion under management, one of them more wellknown and prestigious vcs, if not the most prestigious, in the world. While he was at a z mark and his team advised and held boot camps for the portfolio and go to market best practices and also brought in a network of cxos and executives in the fortune five hundred, global two thousand and if few folks were listening earlier in the podcast, you know that we interview Jamie Buss from Zendesk, who worked for mark for a good number of years. He's also held senior executive positions at Hewlett Packard. He was also in the leadership rolls at Opsware, which was chronicled and been Horowitz's book, the hard thing about hard things, and he played football at southern Utah University, so do not mess with him. Welcome mark to the podcast. Thanks, Sam for having me, or de lighted to have you so. I just gave a very introductory bio for you, but you have a long and a heralded and prestigious career in Silicon Valley, so would be great from your perspective just to hear about your career starting from. You know, you graduated from southern Utah playing football. You know, walk us through the however many years it was till you ended up at signal effects. Wow, that's that's a long time. Yeah, I mean I I get this from the kids today that are coming out of college, you know, just kind of walking them through why cells versus other options they have, you know, coming right out of school. The reason I kind of picked it. I loaded up, jumped in a truck and drove to La right out of school and I said, you got in the office equipment business and you know, the criteria for me is, you know, working. I go a earn a lot of money, be being control of my own destiny and income and see, you know, working I go get great training with, you know and kind of start my career with, you know, under great coaches. You know, I just kind...

...of haven't grown up in a family business and having mentors. My old man and my uncle's in a large family, you know, farm and ranch in Idaho and then going through a kind of an athletic background and high school and college, just kind of understood the importance of, you know, learning a system from the best. So I ended work. Ended up working right out of school for a company called Harris Threem, which, you know, is also divisionally called linear. It's selling copiers rough out of school. Is that down the street cold calling, like physical cold calling, not the kind of cold calling you do. You know, starting as an SDR. So that's how I got into it. I just kind of old graduated up and medical device and equipment cells for several years. Got On the management path extremely quickly. I think I was only an individual contributor for a couple years of my career and lead managed teams. And then one thousand nine hundred and ninety eight, you know, happened to be up in Seattle doing a medical device and equipment start up and it is all this Internet stuff going on around me and there's a company called PTC that had been stealing my guys for years and I finally took their call and couple days later I was, you know, got hired by a guy named John McMahon at PTC, which is doing as largest software company, or was it the time? And got back on that track again, you know, just kind of progressing up in it, up running the America's at PTC in Boston, moved out to Boston and that's where I've been. Horwitz and market recent found me two thousand early two thousand and four recruited me out to do to es, since you build the field out for opswar and took that from up to a hundred and fifty million in cells and end up selling that HP software. So that's that's kind of the the short version. Not Too short, but but long. So you mentioned that you're an individual contributor for only a couple of years and there's probably a couple different there are many, but there are a couple different phases of growth in somebody's career. Or there's being an Icee, then there's sort of your first management experience and then there's the management experience at the VP level. You're running bigger and bigger teams, but sometimes that first jump from individual contributor to manager is the most daunting. How did you figure out that you wanted to be a manager and what were some of the tools, the tips, the strategies that you use to be successful in those first managerial days? I would say the first things you know, as a nice you want to do is just, you know, be a pro I say this to my team all the time and, you know, be a pro not a Schmo. I mean you're particularly early in your career. You're you're a ball player, if you're a great student or student government coming out of school. I mean you spend a lot of time practicing, drilling and rehearsing. You know, I see a lot of the younger proud, you know, they don't approach the job as a you know, as their profession. So I mean I just consumed tons of books on sales, on business. I've got stacks and stacks, you know, even from some of the first ones. So I mean really studying the game, be a student of the game, picking up mentors as far as how I ended up down that path. It's just you'll, mastered the jobs I've been in, whether it's the customers as calling on in the solution, understanding the value and then just a student of the game from a process standpoint. You know how to add value or customers and different Chi at yourself. I think a lot of people don't really understand that. It's not just product that can set you apart, it's you. Right, you are the big differentiator as an icee and you have an ability, even as an individual contributor to be in a leadership position. Managing resource is getting the right resources in the right content and the right things in front of a prospect or a customer to move the chains. So mastering that first and then you got to enjoy, you know, helping other people from a team standpoint, you know, teaching coaching. I mean I always you know, if I hadn't gone into to this path, that had probably ended up into coaching. That was a big fork in the road for me was, you know, do I go into coaching football or going down the cells path? And the thing I liked about the cells path is a place where I could get out every day...

...and test myself and get out and compete and measure up versus my competitions. Though, when you're thinking about building a team, what do you think the criteria is for you know, you mentioned there's a lot of discussion that playing college athletics as a really powerful prerequisite to being successful both in life but specifically in sales. What do you think are the right criteria? If somebody's out there trying to self assess and figure out if they're going to be good at sales, what are the criteria that makes a successful salesperson. I've got a pretty set criteria and I love, you know, on ncable, a athlete. I also it's not a requirement by all means and not all athletes are suited for this business, but a lot of junior married to junior military officers or great high level, you know, as far as stepping stones, people that are extremely active in student government and things those nature. But my criteria kind of falls in three buckets when I'm looking at an individual dollar, and this goes way back. The first, as you know, you want to look at their track record. I mean that's the leading indicators or, you know, past performance, and that's probably the easier thing to vet out and selecting talent. But the other ones are, you know, digging into you know, kind of intellectual horsepower and Equ and things that nature. But I really go hard on the what I call the character bucket and the things I'm looking for a really success themes in people's backgrounds, and a lot of this starts before the resume. It's really in their upbringing. You know how and why they are, you know, motivated by what they're motivated by. You know what's our golden spur and it's the first ones probably how where they ranked from a courage standpoint? Do they have the courage to you know, kind of push through resistance, to take a little bit of a beating from you know, could be a prospect, a customer, it could be running in someone's system? And then do they you know, how competitive are they are they competing? They really enjoy competition, getting up and being measured every day? And then things like focus and discipline. They have the focus and discipline to kind of really study and grill, practice and get better on a day to day basis in the athletic type background, junior military officer type background. You know that that's already just there. It's just ingrained in them and they thrived in those environments. So it's just a good leading indicator. Other things like coachability. You know, what's the work at they where do they get that work ethic? I mean I don't think you just wake up some day when you're thirty, five or forty years old and have a work ethic. I think that's just, you know, that starts, you know, a lot earlier in life. And the last one was probably just you know, do they have empathy? Right? One of the big things on the cellar side. That I look for is do they have kind of the ability of putting themselves in the buyer shoes and understanding what's going on in their world individually and as a company, and can they unpack that? And do you have the intellectual curiosity to figure things out? So those are kind of the high levels for an ice and you know, as you move up to chain from a leadership standpoint, you layer in. You know, do they really enjoy leading and managing people and helping coach them and seeing them succeed? That's kind of the where things might start to break down and I see might think they've got to go into management, but you really you know, if you a lot of them will pop up and go back down. People are wired differently. You know, some people enjoy helping customers and some people enjoy helping reps help customers, if that makes sense. So yeah, that makes a lot of sense. So courage. How do you measure courage? Are there questions that you ask or their specific experiences that are demonstrative of that? I'm just struck by that. You the use of that word. You know, let's say you're a there's different types of courage if you're an SDR, you know, do you have the courage to get some height and with an account right? Do you have a courage to push through you you know a lot of people on the call here would probably recognize the challenge yourself. Do you have the it's really about pushing through resistance and sometimes you have to go above,...

...you know, around your resistance. You have to address directly, maybe an enemy and account or you have to challenge a prospect or customer. If you truly believe and if you done that, if you've done your homework right, you you're greenly competent with your value proposition. I mean, I've got this flight. It talks a lot about, you know, getting competent. You know, gives you confidence, which gives you the courage to do the right thing, to push through the resistance. So digging into that, you know, when people have been had setbacks, how do they get past it? And there's all sorts of different examples courage like, you know, jumping in a river and saving someone. That's a different type of courage. And I'm talking about business or Eq type courage and pushing through resistance in the from a cellar stand you mentioned you know, going all the way back to childhood. Are there? Are there specific childhood experiences or backgrounds even before you get to go to military school or you get to play and Saa Athletics? Are there specific childhood experiences that you think or are indicative sometimes of potential all star performers? Yeah, I mean, look, everybody's got us has a story. I love hearing people's story. I mean they're kind of patent and let's start it. You know, school and do the chronological on your resume. I you know, I love I'll do that and I'll that's how I'll go teach through the track record piece and understand, you know, how they've ranked and their w two's and what kind of training they've gotten. You know, they coming from a system. But if you kind of understand somebody's upbringing, you know, did they you know, was there a death in the family I grew up? I tell a lot of people like I was raised by wolves. You mother was killed in the car accident at a very early age and you know, I was kind of raised by my old man and you know, if you grandmother's and a and my uncle's, you know on a large family farm and business, and you know, you just you end up you growing up a lot quicker. That's my story. I love hearing other people's stories. You know how they're wired. You know that typically happens, you know, earlier in life and you know it can happen later and people can can change. But it helps to to kind of you know, if you do end up selecting that person, you kind of know what their golden spur is, what makes them tick and which could be very valuable to manage them going forward and helping them and coaching them. And you know, the other big thing is, you know, I try to look for, you know, what are the strengths, not the weaknesses, and because a lot of times the weaknesses in somebody's background or extensions of their strengths and it's tough to go fix weaknesses. And the hired a strength versus weakness is another thing and you try to focus on that makes sense. So, you know, one of the things that we were chatting about offline is sort of the different criteria for being an ice versus a manager. You mentioned as a manager you really need to want to help people. What do you think when you think about the difference between sort of a trade, you know, frontline manager and a VP. What are the critical differences that separates, whether you want to call it a cro or but a senior sales executive, from a manager and sort of like all of the tears below. Yeah, so I get I've gotten this question a lot. You know, at and Reson Horowitz, I mean it's essentially one of the big buckets responsibilities I had was advising theos and technical founders on building out their go to market and as they come in from a seed or an a and they're getting ready scale and you know they have to go do that, first cells higher, and one of the ways I walk them through it as you really had three choices early on in a start up anyway, if it could be first reb or could be that you know zero, tod and ten. It's going to be different than you know ten to a hundred type scale. The first line manager, you know the first thing you got to have a great recruiting eye. They got to have mastered the value proposition, the market sells process. But they're probably somebody that's run in somebody else's playbook from a process standpoint and they're rate at executing. The difference...

...between kind of the first second line manager and somebody that can go put the whole thing together. That that great crow is somebody that can come in and they really created from the bottoms up a playbook and the process at a very detailed level and they know they've got the feel and the situational awareness to go, you know, figure out when and where and how to go put things together. I mean a good example is if I have a product, you know, in the software game, right, and I need to go am I going to go build a bottoms up motion? That's a lot. It's a lot of times its product specific. You know, like Jamie over at Zendesk. Zendesk was a kind of a bottoms up to play and she had a she had a great str inside cells background. She also had the scalability to and has had experience managing outside direct in territory, dispersed cells forces in you know, how you go put that together? Do I go top down? I'm going to put the outside direct people in place first regionally and then back into the bottoms up play, or I'm going to put all three levels, you know, major count organization, commercial cells and then you know, small medium business with, you know, STRs from a high velocity standpoint. That's that's probably the biggest difference is the playbook. Can they run in one? Running in somebody else's system versus putting it together? Two completely different things. It's not that somebody else can't, but do they know? Do they have that ability of doing it or not? Yeah, and what when you're thinking about and when you're invising some of these companies, I guess where do you fall out on? Let's say they've got somebody that they think maybe the person's been a VP of sales once before or a highly effective early employee at the company. How do you help the CEO or the founder balance the tension some vcs are constantly wanting to put in, you know, their favorite crow that's done the twenty to a hundred or whatever stage of growth that companies in. And then there are other CEOS that are willing to let senior executives grow into the roles that they're hired for. One of them that comes to mind on the marketing front is nick met at gainsighte and he he had this Guy Anthony Cannada, very early on and now he's CMO and they never sort of swapped him out for the more blue chips. CMO. How do you think about helping founders evaluate when is the time for an outside higher on top, versus letting the person that's in the role evolve into into the role so that they can sort of make a few mistakes but write their own playbook? Yeah, I mean I love seeing the the high potential grow into the role. The thing they bring to the table is knowledge of the solution, the value proposition, the customers and you know, advising this the founder or the CEO is one thing. A lot of it probably depends on them. And what is their ability to, you know, essentially coach them up and help them bro and where do they hit a wall? And one of the things I say is, look, if you've got a really technical founder that's just never scaled on the go to market side, that get some help. You're going to probably have help from your board, but you know, reach out and build a team of advisors, you know that are best in class from a cells and marketing standpoint or whatever the role is. Could, because we're success, that can go help that executive grow and then help you kind of a you know, as the founder, help you kind of assessed. You know, can they make the next level or not, though I'll it's just so situational and a lot of it depends on the you know, the hiring authority. You know what more skill said is getting helps probably the most important thing. Get another set of eyes on it and and you know, if they can't make the leak, they can maybe move on to the next one. But I love seeing them. You know, people grow in those roles. You know, I got the opportunity to do it several times and sometimes, though, you got to you got to go fast. You don't have time to let him grow. So yeah, I love saying it too self servingly of course. But so one of the questions I have is there's all these...

...different frames of stage, stages of growth. You know, there's some people say zero to ten, some people say ten to thirty, twenty two, fifty. What do you think, having done this so many different times, what are the natural break points, if you're thinking about it from an Arr perspective, where things really do change? In those those rr milestones do seem to be indicative of something shifting? You know, zero to ten is probably the toughest and where you're really trying to find that recipe to systematize. You know, I think once you Crackeden, I mean the way I've always looked at is look, if I crack, if I can figure out the ten, I typically can see the path to a hundred from ten. Different people may look at it differently and I think that's probably where the breakdown is. And then, you know, haven't been in all the different phases from, you know, zero to, you know, managing a few thousand people at complete scale. It's that helps dramatically because you know what needs to come next and you've got that awareness of, you know, the building blocks that need to be there, you know, getting up to that hundred. I mean I you know, look if I when I you know, blown by the hundred piece, I'm you know, I'm looking a billion right. You can kind of feel that way. You do or you don't, but you can start to at least understand what needs to come next. Breaking it down into, you know, the smaller buckets. I think, you know tougher. One of the things I think that's missing with a lot of crows is is, you know, do they is the finance piece. They don't spend enough time on the OPS in the finance and really building out the bottoms up type plan and they end up, you know, the CEO and the board and the CFO kind of hand them the plan. I mean some of sometimes it's based on hey know how much they raised. Right, that's plan and it might be a little aggressive and it's at I've seen a lot of arrows be piece of sales get tipped over and and whacked because they just took the bottoms down or the top down plan that was handed to them and they didn't really bend enough time and thought and they've gone into fiscal years. You know, metal on metal, on a plan or underneath the plan. They didn't understand what the reproduct you know, the time of productivity ramps were. They didn't get granular enough on look, it's going to take me longer to ramp up and outside direct cells force is calling on the g two thousand that it is, you know, an inside seller selling. You know it might be nine to twelve months for a fully ramp outside direct cells force, but the inside sellers might ramp it, you know, three months or four months, and that you know. So you really got to pay attention and be the student of the game. Have a great you know, finance guys in your cells operations group and or in the early stages you're doing it yourself. I mean you're into the SPREADSHEET, you're really tweaking that productivity ramp and then you're putting the package together. One of the biggest impacts, and there's another place where people all down is they kind of outsource the you know, training and enablement and the process piece and they're not, you know, customizing that to the uniqueness of their business, because that's the biggest impact. A higher in the right people be put in the right system, in place cells process, then training them up and shaving that cycle time to competency mean unconscious, you know, getting people unconsciously competent at what they're doing. That gives them so much confidence. It gives them a ton of courage to push the resistance and you'll see your productivity ramp quickly. That way, there's one of the purposes of the boot camp is to give the these technical founders. You know, here's what it looks like, it's scale and all these different levels, and here's the things you need to start putting a place and here's kind of the criteria you need to be looking for in your executives as you layer in and build your companies. If everything else was equal, to pay the equality opportunity. Is there a stage for you that's more fun than the others? Do you love it at the you know, managing three thousand people on the march to a billion, or are you kind of like a builder? At the easier at attend to the building? I like the first few months of you know, I go back to a year ago, last summer, I mean literally in the wall on the white board with the founders really teasing out the value,...

...putting the yeah, I come with a playbook, right, but it's a customizable playbook with the messaging, the how to do it at a very grand new level brand your level, how to go step through a technical validation event and concurrently, you know, build a business case, you know, attacking all levels of of an audience, the you know, understanding what the buying criteria should be or your customers. One of the things I think happens is, you know, a lot of go to market exacts, particularly in the startup world, they say, well, here's how it's here's what the buying criteria is for, you know, my customers to simplified. I try to break it down into three buckets. Executive level buying criteria is completely different than if you go down to the bottom, like the users of your service. Right, that's more feature function based DEC it is is more business, since you know, strategy and initiative level type criteria, though, putting a an rlie type model in there to show value. The other thing people to understand is look the customer. If it's new right at like in our space, there's this massive shift going on in the market place from an architecture standpoint to cloud needy. Right, what's the buying criteria? What should it be? It's our job to help our customers get there and providing that value by here's what things you might want to look at as you move forward in your move to cloud nat even here's how we can help. The last thing we bring up is here's how we can help you know, from a solution standpoint. So that I think that's super critical. Is really crafting the message, and that's what I enjoy the most is kind of figuring the thing out and then systematizing it and then growing it higher and the right people, training and developing them and then seeing them have a big impact with their customers. Tell us about signal fx. If they've got you as chief commercial officer, there's obviously something super interesting going on. So tell us about that company a little bit it look, I got the opportunity at my time at Andrews and Horowitz to, you know, work with and look at and evaluate thousands of investment opportunities and work with a ton of founders and teams that we invested in taking on the enterprise side, and so there's a genealogy story here. A lot of the crew at signal fx, the founding team. There's two cofounders, phil low would and carthy grows, or Co. They actually a loudcloud and when loudcloud made the you know, they had the neardeath experience and they respun the company out as ops. where US enterprice software company from a cential, a service provider, you know, kind of aws before a tows, they cart. They get it up, going and joining a young lady called Diane Green at this little company called D m where when is about a million cells, and then art they ran product for her through the ipl Phil Lou State at opswhere where I work with him, and through he's our chief architect, and he you know, after we got acquired by HP software, he got recruited into this little company of Palo Alto called the facebook, and I heard of him and a lot of the the engineering team went over there and they saidually built and rebuilt the monitoring solution for internally at facebook for several years, two thousand and seven up to two thousand and thirteen when docker was released and this whole containerized environment started to take off. So cart they can fil got together then and cofounded the company and decent Horowitz, we invested in the a round. So I got a lot of a long run with these guys all the way back to sentially two thousand and four when I came out to the valley and the exciting pieces. It's it's a huge market to move to the cloud and public cloud, public or private, is really accelerating. And what they built it, what we built here, is a real time streaming analytics engine that helps customers get to these cloud naive environments and either infrastructure, their application, your Apis all on one view at lightning speed, which is, you know, in this four nines economy where things are going, where companies...

...are happened to come. Software companies it's pretty exciting. So that's what brought me off the bench. It's just the size of market, the chance to kind of paint my own canvas from go to market standpoint in a what we think is going to be a really big, important company. It's incredibly exciting. Question for you about a Z in your time there, so you got as a sales leader and a sales executive or revenue executive. You have one set of skills, but you've also had the opportunity to work with besides Ben and mark, you know, every other partner at in recent is one of the smartest people in their fields. So what are some of the lessons beyond sales and revenue that you learn from your time being around and directly working with so many of the brightest minds in investing, whether it's been Horowitz or Christics and or anybody else? Probably the biggest thing is, you know, one of the probably core investment thesis has the firm was? You know, did there's the founding team today. Really you know they earn and you know learn and earn a secret, I mean kind of a secret that no one else really knew and it wasn't always super obvious at first. In fact, the craziest ideas sometimes, you know, a lot of times, turn out to be the bigger outcomes from an investment standpoint. So being able to listen and really, you know, dig in and tea's out. It's like, you know, Cart they can and fill the founders of the signal fx. I mean that that whole team, the engineering team, they'd really learned to learn a secret at facebook, but they're just so deep in it. I mean it's a pros versus shmos type thing. And and my job, the biggest part of my job, was there is. I how do you go, you know, operationalize that and go to market? And then, via this briefing program that I built, you know, we would sentually reach out to the GTWO thousand, the senior executives across the world event really and offer them up access to curated innovation, you know, to these dart ups that, you know, would normally would take them years for these startups to get to these type of executives to build up enough cells and marketing muscle. I mean we essentially shorten that. And or if, from a customer standpoint, you know, a cio of a gobal two thousand or his or her team what might take them years to kind of sort through what's coming next. You know, they just weren't getting innovation like the old days. I mean people used to buy innovation from the HPS and the IBM's of the world. Today, thinks are just happening so fast with cloud and social and mobile and all the technology shifts in the changing and business models. It's just, I mean it, I just saw a lot in a short period of time. So, yeah, I work with a lot of smart people, a lot of people we invested. They had got it, but really connecting the two worlds, the valley to the rest of the world. From a business standpoint, there was it was a lot of fun, but I missed the GRANNU Larry. I always missed the granny larity of getting in and every day, you know, waking up and you know I love the smell and napalm in the morning, went out and ask from a competitive standpoint, that's the one like the most. I like coaching and helping startups, but you know, it always took longer right and there wasn't you know, I couldn't make them do anything. That was the most frustrating part. But it was a lot. It did give a lot of satisfy. I mean there was a lot of satisfacts. You work with some great companies, guys like, you know, the team over an Oct. I mean to put a lot of the cells leadership in there. I mean they you know, what public a year, year and a half ago, and you know, five billion dollar, five billion dollar valuation now. I mean companies like that. Or we're fun to work with. Github crew, which you know, was tough to work with. They had this culture problem right, or I viewed as a problem. They didn't want to screw up their engineering culture. Is like guys. I mean you can have two cultures. I mean the most important culture is the culture of winning right and getting your solution out to the market. And you know it's you got to, you know, get out in front of the customers. You'RE gonna have to drop people into territories and, you know, put the sales guys in another floor. Yeah, the engineers want to they want to win to right. That is a debate I have had so many times...

...and you and me aren't exactly the same page. I think a lot of founders don't. They don't process that you can have more than one culture and that the kind of person that's going to be a really successful salesperson. They might need a bell to go off every ID new opportunities created. Our sale as closed. And if that annoys the engineers, then have them in two different rooms. It's okay. Yeah, absolutely. I remember when I joined it opswhere, within the first week, you know, there was a cube company. Right. So I'm a little some people might fall find this hard to believe, but I can be a little loud and I had an engineer walk over. I was on the phone with a prospect and actually had I got a grant Wilson with me, runs force management, great cells trading in a nabling company. We work together at PTC and as like, you know, listen to you know, want it. I wanted him to kind of hear what the customers saying. And the engineer comes over and says, Hey, can you hold it down? We're trying to write some coded here, and I could on the mute button. They said hey, mother, blankety blank blanker, if we don't get this deal, you're gonna have a job. Get the free you know. It was a little uncomple actually he's at signal fx right now. He's still tells that story. So a few days later board mandate, cranny gets his own office. There was a conference room, but I was the first to have it office. Yeah, we ended up, you know, moving to different floor pretty quickly. So I get it. I understand. A few last questions. First of all, thanks so much for taking the time. I really appreciate it and it's it's just an honor to get to chat with you. One question I have is what's changed? You know, you've been doing this such a long time. I don't mean to say that and maybe that sounds like, yeah, you're not that all. Do Still Young, you're younger heart, but but things have changed in particularly because even though you were advising Dart upset a sixteen Z, I'm sure that you're in it right now and there's probably specific tactic, specific tools that are different than the last time. You know, you are formally the head of sales or the head of revenue. So what stood out to you as some of like the biggest changes in the sales world from now versus maybe ten or fifteen years ago? I think I mean a lots changed. You know, the tools right, the power of the user, you know, the bottoms up type cell. I think in the growth marketing pieces change. The customers are just armed with way more information prior to the reach out, you know. So I think ABM is super important, attacking your target markets from a bottoms up standpoint as well as top now and kind of putting all three of the audiences together, you know, the the CXO, different criteria versus you know, BP's and selling laterally across multiple functions of the business. And then the bottoms up, getting to the bottoms up the users, because and the tech is just so much better right. So, I mean in some cases it's changed. The tooling is changed from you know, crm and marking automation standpoint. I love. I mean I looked at hundreds of solutions over there. I still, you know, we're constantly tweaking them here, the access to customer information, but the biggest thing is just the power and knowledge that the that the buyer has. And then, you know, how do you help enable the seller? You know the how does the marketing ortization enable the seller? And you know, the advantage I have here is a you know, run and sells. Marketing in customer success is really being able to take the iron out and just flatten everything. See, I don't have like three functions that are pointing figures at each other. I just learn out wrap, people excide the head and we you know, it's one system right. You know, being able to view it, you know the customer journey is as one big customer journey. So it's pretty exciting. Yeah, it sounds incredibly exciting. I have a specific question for you. Just in the enterprise sales world. Do you guys do POC's as signal effects? And there's a bit of a debate, or at least there's debate in my world, about whether you should charge for the POC before moving to full production environment.

What's your point of view there? WHOO that I love that one. I want to give my kind of gets into my you know, the hardcore Ip, but absolutely here I want I have such a devastatingly powerful product and that's one of the most exciting things and one of the reasons I joined is I really like the product the impact it can have with with our customers. I want to do a plc. I want it. If I go in sidebyside, no one could be absolute devastatingly will kick anybody's ass if we can get the customer to put it in and I want to do a big one and I will treat the PLC like a production deployment, like we're deploying it. So absolutely charge. Do you charge for the PSC, though in some cases we will if we can it. Typically will do is we get executive alignment up front that you know if we go through it, we're going to treat it like a production deployment and you know we're going to when we get down the path. We're currently start working on commercials. We're going to concurrently, as we're checking the boxes from a criteria standpoint, we're working on a business case for the executives and we're going to put it in production for it and you're not going to want to turn it off. You're not going to want it. Why would go waste the time? Let's just go put in production. Yes, bring in the competition, absolutely, sidebyside, we will kick their ass. So I love it. I love it. Yeah, my perspective is pretty similar to hers. It's I just what you know. Sometimes there's going to be companies that are asking for a POC and it's sort of like, yeah, we would love to see a pilot and see what happens, and my mandate as well. There has to be a passive production. We don't do POSC's for their own sake. We do it in the context. A lot of it's just putting a barbel around it. We do unpaid HELC's for this time frame and here's the checks of the box. If you want to go beyond that, then it's really there's a difference between a PELC and a paid pilot. Right. If you want to go longer than that and you want to do soaked tests and stuff like that that are beyond you know what we think, you know needs to happen, then you know absolutely move it up to a paid pilot. So I think it's a situational it depends on your tech, depends on where you're at, how hard it is to get deployed for customers it. You know, I don't think one answer fits all the boxes. I think it really is situational. Yeah, makes sense. There's a section at the end here where I basically just like to pay it forward and figure out either people that have worked for you that you think we should know about or books that you've read that you think we should be reading, but who are as, as they say in the commitments. Who are who are your influences? Wow, I was hired by, you know, PTC. I do love coaching. Trees are super important to me. I mean the the talent that came out of PTC. The numbers of vpiece of cells all over the place are phenomenal. You know, there's a lot more Boston. It's a lot more Boston DNA, but there's a lot of them out here. You know John McMahon, you know he's does a ton of advising and boards right now. He hired me of PTC and then we ended up squaring off and went to battled. He was at blade logic when I was at offswhere. That was the Super Fun for me because, you know, he was good. I mean his whole team was good and we went to war. That was probably the funnest I had as far. I mean Jade Buss, who you've had on the program I think some phenomenal talent. I don't know if I was really prepared for this one. That's okay. It's management. You know, if you're a Croro and and you need some help putting a package together, I you know, the Horse Management through out in North Carolina. They have a playbook they can you know. It's called comp you know, the Big One, is the most popular, is command of the message, hardcore cells process, they forecasting process with Betty. You know, they can put that in for you in a customized fashion. If you don't have the time or the OPS and the cells enable men trained chops to do it and or people to do it. You can't wait. I you know, I would follow those guys as blog John Kaplan and grant Wilson over there or phenomenal talent, some of my favorite people. You know, the opposite there is there a sales book that you think or books that you either you know like something that's had a big impact on you...

...over the last couple years or something like spin selling or something that you've read recently that you think has some interesting nuance. Yeah, I read a lot of them. The problem is with the readers. Now I can never remember the names of them, but I look Steve Martin, the author, Steve Martin Heavy hitter selling. You know, it's a little more tech and enterprise software focus. He's wrote two or three that I really am a fan of. I don't know if they're still you know if he's a really a big best seller. I've been spend a lot more time on the marketing side lately, on the growth marketing side. But you know, I'm going back all the way the ZIG. I go all the way back to you dated me, but the ZIG tigglers and the you know, that's stacks of the books. So yeah, you look, be a pro, not a SHMO. Is the big I mean be a student the game. Is what I suggest with everybody. You know, consume this data, study, practice, drill, rehearse the cells. You know, if you want to, you're aspiring cells manager. You know, there's a lot of management great management books as well. So very good. Last question. I'm assuming you guys are growing at signal effects if folks want to reach out to you or first of all, are you open to that and second of all, what's the best way to do it? Email, market, signal effectscom, you know, twitter, facebook, Linkedin, maybe not all the usual channels. And I know are you guys building out and are you hiring? Oh, absolutely, yeah, we're hired all levels, all the all the cellar positions were hard for stars, just phenomenal talent. We're getting inside sellers at a commercial teams, you know, hybrid guys. I love the inside celler. You know, strs are coming in and they're getting in the field or they're getting to quit of carrying roles pretty quickly and we're starting to push them out to hybrids fairly quickly. We're also hiring a heavy hitter, you know, ten, fifteen, twenty year major account type reps that can walk the halls of the global fifty, global fortune five hundred type of counts. So absolutely your you back in New York. We can't find enough back there right now, so you're very good. We're hired in Europe as well as agent. So Market Signal effectscom folks will reach out to you. All right, mark, thanks so much for joining. We really appreciate it's been it's been great talking to you. How to go to one. See You. Hey, everybody, it's SAM's corner. We just continue to get amazing guests here on the salesacker podcast and Mark Cranny is somebody that a lot of people know his name and he's featured very prominently in the hard thing about hard things, and now his chief commercial officer to signal effects and he's a guest on the salesacer podcast, so lucky us. That was awesome. Just a quick interesting point that mark made that I really strongly agree with. I've had this debate so many times with my boss, is typically the CEO or the founder about you know, there's a it's a product even company and there's a group of engineers and so they say, well, we don't want to bro Culture, a bro meaning, I guess, like Super Masculine sales team that's sort of chess bumping or something like that. And so there's a lot of dismissiveness and a lot of disparagement sometimes around celebration, particular in the sales team. And what I try to convey to people that I work with, particularly CEOS, is these are different cultures and sales teams need to be motivated and people need to celebrate. What we do is really, really hard. We hear no most of the time. I always say that if you hear no seven out of ten times you're an all star and if you hear no nine out of ten times, you're fired. And that is the life of a salesperson. And so when we do get that win, when we do get that sign contract, I think it's okay to celebrate. I think it's okay to use something like a level eleven or a ambition dot ioh or a Hoopla and, you know, have a sound go off and have a celebration go off and have a celebratory gift. But it's okay to celebrate and high five and make some noise. And if that means that there are two different cultures, but all of them aligned...

...around winning more broadly, then that's important and that's okay. And if you're out there and you're a founder building an amazing product with a great group of Engineers, that's awesome and we celebrate you. But just understand that it takes a village, it takes a lot of different types of people to build a company and let's make sure that we empower the salespeople on the team, whatever gender, race, ethnicity, age, wherever they're from, whoever they are. Let's empower them to celebrate those wins because what we do is really, really difficult. So with that, I'm sure some folks out there are nodding their their heads in agreement. I'll leave you with that. This has been Sam's corner. I'll talk to you soon. To check out the show notes, see upcoming guests. and play more episodes from our incredible lineup of sales leaders. Visit Sales Hackercom and head to the PODCAST TAP. There you'll find the sales hacking podcast on itunes or Google play. If you enjoyed this episode, please share it with your peers on Linkedin, twitter or elsewhere. If you want to get in touch from me, I think the best way is linkedin. So that's linkedincom in slash Sam f Jacobs. Once again, a huge shout out to our sponsors. Are Call, which is your advanced call sending software, complete business phone and contact center, one hundred percent natively integrated into any crm and outreach, a customer engagement platform that helps efficiently and effectively engage prospects to drive more pipeline and close more deals. I'll see you next time,.

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