The Sales Hacker Podcast
The Sales Hacker Podcast

Episode · 3 years ago

36: How to Market to Developers w/ Meghan Gill, VP Sales Operations, MongoDB

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

This week on the Sales Hacker podcast, we interview Meghan Gill, VP of Sales Operations at MongoDB.  

Meghan has been at Mongo almost 9 years and was the first non-technical hire at the company, helping them scale past an IPO in 2017 and transitioning from an early career in Marketing into Sales Operations.  

One, two, one, three, everybody, this is Sam Jacobs. I am the founder of the revenuecollective and I'm the chief Revenue Officer of a company called behave box. You'relistening to the sales hacker podcast. Today on the show we've got the VPof sales operations, Megan Gilt, at Mungo DV. Mungo ipled last yearin October of two thousand and seventeen and Megan was the first non technical higherat the company. They now have a sales team of will over two hundredpeople and revenue of over two hundred million and their public company. So it'sa great conversation. She started off in marketing and then moved into sales and, as a consequence, has really deep insights into highly technical enterprise sales thatare sort of bottoms up, they call them, smoke them out, marketingstrategies where they market first hit the individual developer and then from there they pursueand push up into the enterprise, and so it's a really interesting conversation.They've had tremendous success and we're excited to have run the show. Now,before we get to the show, we want to thank our sponsors. Thefirst is er call, a phone system designed for the modern sales team.Are Call seamlessly into greats into your crm, eliminating data entry for your reps andproviding you with greater visibility into your team's performance through advanced reporting. Sowhen you're ready to scale, you can add new lines in minutes and youcan use in call coaching to reduce ramptime for you new reps. they've gota new product focused on sales. They originally started in customer success and they'redoing great work and they've got a great had of marketing, Jeffreakers, who'sbeen on this show. So visit air called out io forward sales hacker.That it's air called out io forward sales hacker, to see why we we'redone in Bradstreet pipe drive. Thousands of others trust are call for their mostcritical sales conversations. Our second sponsor is outreach io. Our reaches also thesponsor of the revenue collective, which were super excited about. outreaches the leadingsales engagement platform. So they triple the productivity of sales teams and empower themto drive predictable and measurable revenue growth by prioritizing the right activities and scaling customerengagement with intelligent automation. Outreach makes customer facing teams more effective and improved disabilityinto what really drives results, which they will tell you that I suppose hopover to outreach. That io forward sales hacker to see how thousands of customers, including cloud, a, glass door, Pandora and Zelo, rely on outreachto the build or higher revenue for sales rap. so that's outreached,io forward slash sales hacker. And without further ado, let's listen to Meganguild from mango DB. Hey, everybody, it's Sam Jacobs. Welcome to thesales hacker podcast. We're incredibly excited to have Megan Gill on the showtoday. Megan is VP of sales operations at mango DB. Importantly, shewas employee number eight at the company and has been with the company almost nineyears and has watched that company grow from a very early stage, which willhear about, all the way through IPO. She started off in marketing and thenrecently moved over into sales operations, recently, about a year and ahalf ago. I guess she's also an advisor to a lot of early stagecompanies here in New York and an advisor to flybridge capital, which is aVC focused on our stage investments. So she's a wellknown startup advisor in additionto being a really respected sales and marketing leader here in the New York community. So, Megan, welcome to the show. Thanks for having me.We are excited to have you. So one of the things that we liketo do right at the beginning is sort of understand a little bit about yourbackground and, as we say, get your baseball card. So you know, your name is Megan Gill, your VP of sales operations. We knowthat mango DB's a public company, we know that it's a Big New Yorksuccess story, but a lot of people don't know what Mam Goo DP does. So give us the quick overview of the company that you've been with forclose to nine years. Sure. So, MOM Goo dyb is a we makedatabase technology. So we make a more flexible and scalable database solution thatmakes developers more productive. That's it in enough shell. Good and then sowhat's rough revenue range? I mean your public company. So I guess wecould look it up on your most recent filing, but what's the run rateof the business? You can say roughly...

...two hundred million and growing. Cargoing in a pretty fast clip. That's exciting. And so you guys ipoedin basically very recent it was it. Was it a few months ago?Was it a year ago? It was a year ago. So we hadour one year as a public company anniversary, I want to say two weeks agoas of this recording. So we're recording in October two thousand and eighteen. So we went public in October two thousand and seventeen. Congratulations. Sotell us about your story a little bit. Where you're from? You know,what's your background? How did you end up at mango back in intwo thousand and nine? Sure, so when I joined mom going to beat the end of two thousand and nine. We were. I was the eighthemployee. It was all engineers and and how I got there as Iknew the founder, Elliott. We went to college together and I was lookingto join US start up, and so I went to Elliott for advice thinkinghe would refer me somewhere. I didn't expect him to say, Hey,why don't you join Mongo DB, because I had knew very little about opensource software. It was a very technical, technical product. There was no salesand marketing team, but he said Hey, you're smart, why don'tyou join? You can come and just help us get leverage, help usfigure things out, and that's pretty much exactly what I did. I hada very sort of ouldifascinating role when I joined and over time I became morefocused on marketing and particularly developer marketing, and then over the years I endedup running multiple teams. I ran develop a relations, I ran to mangeneration, I ran events and then about a year and a half ago theCEO and the CEO asked me to take on sales operations and again I waslike I know nothing. To sort of similar and when I joined longing tobe I was like I don't know anything about sales ops. I know I'mfairly onnalytical from having run to man generation, and they kind of gave me thesame field. They were like, well, this is a great opportunityfor up, you know, for you because you'll learn a lot about howthe sales organization is run, and it's good for us because you know thecompany, you know the business, you know all the people in the nuancesof how things what things work and what things don't work, and I thinkbe a good fit for it. So that's how I ended up in thisrole. So how do you define sales operations at mango DP? What isthe scope and sweep of your responsibilities? Sure, so my role is theit's a bit of it can be a bit of a cash all and andactually it's funny, because I was thinking about this as as prefect this podcast, that one of the things that was great about the early days of BongoDB is that whenever there was a problem that wasn't engineering related, I justhad to go figure out how to fix it and it drove this sort ofhigh degree of accountability and problem solving, and I think that's sort of thesame concept in sales ops, is that you know, whatever sortainly needs toget fixed, it's my job to fix it. But the scope of myrole is really the systems, the reporting and the analytics to support the salesteam and to get the highest productivity out of the sales team we possibly can. So that's my mandate. Tell us about the sales team, because it'ssort of it's got a lot of different pieces in it, particularly given sucha complex sale. Sure. So, at a high level, we divideour sales team into two main segments. We have a corporate segment, whichis calling on companies with today with less than seven hundred fifty million and revenue. Next fiscal year we're going to make some changes which I can talk about. And then we have an enterprise organization, which calls on seven hundred fifty millionplus and they're out in the field or organized geographically. So we wantto optimize for, you know, reps in Dallas calling on the customers andDallas and so forth. And then we have some supporting functions. We havea solutions architect organization, which is our technical pre sales organization that supports thesales reps, as well as a partner organization that helps us source steals throughstrategic a size and ISBS and help us sort of go to market with thosecompanies and would tell us this is this is, you know, all very, very interesting, particularly for myself, given that I run a growing enterprisesale that's highly technical sober. Some of these questions might be very self interested, but so, given what is the ratio of solution architects, which itmight incorrect, and saying that that's largely...

...sales engineers. That's sort of whatmost people would call them. What's the ratio between them and the field salesteams? And when we think about a city like Dallas or a city like, I don't know, Los Angeles, how many people, how many sellers, are in those markets or is it purely driven by this is the territory? There's so many people that are sure. So lanswer the first question about ratiosfirst. So we actually run it slightly different ratios for a corporate versusour enterprise team. So our enterprise team, you know, we're expecting the repsto be traveling, to be on site. So we expect to haveroughly in a steady state, three to one. The reality is it endsup being more like two or two and a half to one because we're growingso fast. So, as an example, we just put our first sales upin Korea. So we can't put a sales rep without us, withoutan essay. So we have a onetone ratio there and we sort of buildthat into our planning. Is like. You know, we know that certainratio certain territories, as we grow them, are going to have more essays tomatch the number of you know, the the as we put in.The first reps in those areas are inside team. It's a slightly you know, it's a little bit more. It's more transactional. The reps are onthe selling on the phone. So it's typically more like a five or sixto one ratio, but we're sort of we've also been experimenting with with thatratio as well. I guess that one of the questions I have is howdifficult is it to recruit essays solution architects and what's the level of technical experiencethat you require or expertise or substance that you were that you expect from theseller themselves? So I was a debate, you know, in these highly technicalorganizations, what what is the expectation of sales? Do you guys havea clear definition of what the salesperson is supposed to do and how that isdifferent from what the solution architect is supposed to do? I think it isquite different. I mean, you know, our sales reps are one of theirkey responsibilities that's quite distinct from an essay is pipeline generation, right.I mean that's like a huge part of the job now. I think ifthey're technical, they're going to potentially the sales rep has some technical background,they put potentially do a better job a PG because they understand the audience andthey understand what the person cares about. We did do some analysis recently aboutpeople's backgrounds and try to correlate, you know, are that's. Are Thereps with more technical background more productive than reps without a technical background? Andwe found that yes, and generally are, but it wasn't hugely significant and theydo work closely with the essays once they do get into a deal interms of sizing and scoping and defining the requirements. Interesting, it's always beendifficult for us at least, to find essays, to find people that aretechnical in all of these different markets. Do you guys sort of experience thesame thing, which is that it's sort of more difficult to find the technicalsales, engineering, solution architecture support in some of these markets as it isto find great sellers? Or is it just finding great talent as hard inthe matter? or You guy, I would say just finding great talent is, I mean, I'd say, the interesting thing or I think our biggestchallenge challenges. It's not market size, because the database market is huge.It's like forty billion dollars a year growing and I think the product is great. Our biggest limitation has been finding talent and engineering and sales essays and inall functions to grow at the rate that we want to grow. Yeah,well, I think that's a common situation for a lot of high growth companies. You guys are you know, it's a hundred. It's a large organization. You started as the first non technical hire. Walk us through some ofthe phases of growth because I think you know, you mentioned there have beensome sort of shifts and I don't know if they're called pivots, but certainlythey're been inflection points in the growth of Mango Dib. Give us a littlebit of that experience, as it's been over nine years. Sure. Imean when I joined we had no sales reps. we probably hired our firstwe are in our first sales or, if I want to say, inlike six or twelve months after I joined, and those reps were really very reactive. I mean we had a pretty I mean I was running running marketingprogram so I'll to my own horn. I thought we were doing pretty goodjob in marketing. We had a lot...

...of inbound demand and so they werereally managing that that inbound demand and we overtime built the sales organization and wedid split it between an inside organization and a field organization and one of theearly iterations they were actually you could consider them kind of overlay, so theywere covering the same accounts but they were split based on the size of thedeal and I actually thought that that was a pretty not optional configuration because peoplewould do funny business to make sure that the deal was on. You know, I forget what the threshold is like. Let's say it was a K thresholdand inside was closing less than that and outside was closing deals bigger thanthat. So that created situations where people were trying to hang on to dealsor move or change the size of the opposite that they could close it.So then we changed the configuration of the sales organization that be based on revenue. So our inside team was was had sole responsibility for companies less than acertain revenue threshold and the outside team was closing deals above that threshold. Andover time we kept raising the revenue threshold and then we saw something else happenwhich I alluded to earlier, which is that even though our threshold got allthe way as high as seven hundred and fifty million and revenue, our insideteam has had the most success with companies with less than a hundred million inrevenue. So we're actually doing something counterintuitive. We're saying, Hey, we wantyou to focus on where you're having success, when they're having a lotof success, are actually quite productive the inside team. Let's focus you onon the low end, on accounts less a hundred million. Doesn't mean thatyou're the the JV team. It just means that you found your you foundyour sweet spot and let's give the enterprise team a chance to go after theaccount said you know, basically, you're not focused on you're not spending enoughtime on let's give the enterprise team of crack at those. So I've seensort of multiple iterations and different ways to structure the team and you know,even though we're public company, were still literating on it. Yeah, I'msure, and you know you're known in many ways. I mean, Iguess for most of the time a pet Mongo you were doing marketing and youguys have an interesting go to market model because it's sort of developer driven.So walk us through you know that because you know you mentioned you were workingon demand generation. Like walk us through the model for how mango DB identifiesan opportunity and how you became good at figuring out how to market to developers. Sure. So our approach has been to have to create like a reallyamazing customer experience and an amazing experience for developers. So mom going to beis open source and we treat open source almost like a fremium model. Soyou can get up and running and try mom going to be and build applicationsof Mongd be, either with our open source version and now we have acloud product called longing to be atlas where there's a free tier or so youcan, you know, very quickly get up and running with the product.And that's how we generate demand, because we make it really easy to fordevelopers to use. And the way we think about sales is the sales repsare really looking for what we call smoke, as in when they're smoke their fire. So they're looking for accounts where there's activity. Could Be, youknow, developers just tinkering around and they're going and talking to those developers,finding out what kind of projects there are and then pillaring up to a decisionmaker or somebody more senior to talk about a more strategic, more strategic deal. What is the benefit of going from sort of free, open source topay? Is it security and sort of some of the INFOSEC and some ofthe things that an enterprise cares about? Or there are different features? Sure, so there's really two rounds you can go in terms of paying for momgoing to be there. If you're running on prem you're probably going to havesecurity requirements, you're going to have operational requirements. So we offer an nompremproduct called long, going to be enterprise advanced, which includes advanced security,includes a tool called ops manager that lets you know, manage and run momgoing to be within your data center. And then, if you want togo to the cloud, we offer a tool called long of the atlas,which has a free tier. The Nice Segment Atlas is that it, youknow, automates and and handles all of the a lot of the operational thingsthat a technical team or an operations team...

...would need to do in order runin order run mom to be on their own, and it's in a ratedwith aws school cloud and with Azure, so you can. The Nice thingis is that you can run in on any cloud that you want and youhave flexibility to be on, you know, multiple clouds. What are your keyinsights from, you know, running developer marketing for so long and fromrunning to managin get us in the heads or the minds of the developers,and what are some of like the great marketing programs that you run? Justreally curious because you didn't formally have a marketing background, but you spent alot of time, I would imagine, putting yourself in the mind of eithera decision maker, a sort of an engineering manager or a developer themselves.What was that like and what are some of the key insights that you drew? I think the key insight is, you know, developers, they don'treally like being quote unquote, marketed to, but they are really hungry for informationand for learning and for education. So we took that angle in prettymuch all of the marketing programs that we did. So, as an example, one of the early successes was doing these one day developer conferences, whichwe still do, the early ones. I mean, I'd probably be embarrassedto like, look, you know, if I were running that event now, probably be embarrassed, as it was like the production value is so lowand was so minimally branded. But it didn't matter because people were there tolearn. They were there to figure out how they could solve their problems withmom to be, how they could build applications more efficiently. Is that waslike an early marketing win. And then, you know, another key marketing initiative, which is still really an important part of our go to market,is are Mong going to be university? So we offer free online courses whereyou can learn mom woyd be and we've had over a million people register fora course to learn momoyd be. So again it's like to me, Ithink about like the educational angle has been really effective for working with developers.What is the narrative that you've constructed given again, like many people, Idon't think you majored any marketing or any of the major and sales, certainlybecause that's nearly impossible to do. So what's the narrative, or how doyou think about approaching career development and professional development for yourself and sort of advicethat you might give to other folks that are out there listening? Sure so, if anybody's read lean in, which I know is Chryl Samberg's book,is really thought about. Most people think of it as being about purely aboutwomen, but I think there's a lot of really great generic career advice init and one of the really great pieces of advice she gives them the booksto think of your career as a jungle gym rather than thinking about it asa ladder. So in my case, you know, I could have justkept going up the ladder and learning more and more about marketing, but actuallydecided to take a step to the side and work on sales ups to giveme a broader perspective. Similarly, like you know, I think a lotof people get really honed in on things like titles, like what's the role? Am I going to be VPA marketing or VP OF SALES? My perspectiveis better to be in a company who cares about the title, who careswith the role. If you're a company is growing really quickly, there arealways be new opportunities if you're doing a good job and you're anti value,which is the experience I had. Of had a chance to do multiple thingswithin marketing and now within within say, bills. So I would say thatthe two pieces advice are, you know, think of it as a jungle gym, not a ladder, and secondly, to think about joining a great companyis so much more important than the the specific job title or job description. was there a point at mango DB when it became clear it was goingto be this IPO opportunity? Is there something you attribute that success to,or is it really just, fundamentally, you built a great product and youguys just continue to iterate and figure out how to serve your customers better?Well, it's an interesting question. I mean, you know, I thinkevery I think most people when they're joining a start up are hoping for agreat outcome like in like an IPO. I think for us, yes,product was their stronggo to market and then also just the size and the spopof the market. I mean, we think we're only capturing a very smallpercentage of the overall database market, which is, you know, over fourbillion. So if we keep executing then we can continue to grow at thepiece that we're growing. It's a great outcome. So congratulations on it.You know, one of the things that...

...we were sort of talking about beforeand that you mentioned and in a note to me, is talking about movingfrom a funnel framework, which I guess Brian Halligan at s hub spot wasmentioning, to a fly wheel and how companies need to focus on customer delight. Are you guys doing that at Mango DB? Walk us through how you'rethinking of it, which is often, I guess it's sort of like amarketing framework, but probably also relevant to the sales organization. Yeah, soI just recently watched Brian Halligan's keynote. That inbounds when he talks about goingfrom funnel to fly wheel, and I think this is, in a reallyindicative of how the market is changing. You know. I mean it usedto be that the person who had all the information and it held all thecards was the sales rep they had they knew everything about the product, aboutthe market, about the competition. Now it's a lot easier for people toget that kind of information on their own and it does put sales at abit of a disadvantage and it means that, you know, what's become the mostpowerful form of sales and marketing is customers or talking about the experience they'rehaving with your product and generating virality. So I think that means that assales people and as marketers, we need to reorient towards creating an amazing,positive customer experience so that our customers will refer people and, you know,talk about the great experience that they're having. So that can manifest itself in manyways, like you know. One way, for example, was havinga really strong customer success organization that's integrated with your sales organization, which issomething that we have. Another approaches, you know, we have all ofyou know, some companies, once a deal is closed, they pass therenewal off to a renewals team. We have our sales reps continue to ownthe relationship and own the renewals, which means that they're really invested in thesuccess of the customer and thinking about making sure that they're going to renew whenthat when that time comes. So so there's different ways that you can integratedinto the come that concept into the company. Yeah, do you find that thesales people? Do they embrace that idea of mataining the relationship? Arethere tradeoffs that you have with the customer success or Account Management Teams in termsof division of responsibilities? It's always an interesting challenge to think about to whatextent the CS or am teams are motivated by specific revenue apis versus the salesteam. How do you guys structure that? I'm a strong and believer that theat least in a business like ours, that the reps need to own therenewals, and the reason for that is that we're land and expand salesmotion. So if you think about how many database applications a single company couldhave, I mean the first deal is just your foot in the door,so it would not make sense to pass that on to somebody who's more ofa a farmer. To maintain the relationship. We want the reps to stay,engage and structure the complex and structure their territory, is that they're reallymotivated to stay gage in the with the customers. Now I agree there aretradeoffs, like doing a renewal like that takes away time from generating new businessand it takes away time from, you know, getting new logos, butI think that it's important enough in a land and expand that we're willing tomake that tradeoff and I think it's the right thing to do. When youthink about you're in sales ups now and to the point of land and expandand sort of like looking at the sales team and looking at the sales motion. There's a lot of enterprise sellers out there and you're in this unique rollbecause you're in sort of the OPS function, so you're looking out at the productivityof all of the different sellers and sort of what makes success and whatdoesn't. And you said that you've done some analysis trying to determine if technicalbackground or some level of technical knowledge helps people perform better. What are theother insights that you've gleaned looking at sort of sellers from this analytical objective perspectivein terms of what makes a great seller? Who Your most successful people are andwhy? And you know, what lessons can you share with the audience? Sure I can share. I mean one sort of counterintuitive insight we havehad, and this says less to do with the people in the profile,is around focus. Some I think we're big fans of focus at MONGODB.So we did an analysis to figure out. Okay, I think intuitively would thinkif I give someone a bigger patch and more opportunity, they're going tobe more productive. We actually found pretty...

...much exactly the opposite, that thefewer accounts somebody has, the more productive they are, and that actually makessense to focus people on a handful of really good accounts where they can getdeep and they can maybe say qualify I'll quickly or qualify in quickly. Sothat was one insight that we had and that had US move our entire salesorganization, including our inside reps, to a named account model. When yousay a handful, like how is it five and roll. And this isthe other sort of key insight is, you know, you can't treat everyperson. You know, every person's unique right. You have to match theplayer to the position right. So an inside rep can handle, you know, seventy five accounts. It's very high velocity. They're qualifying in and outvery quickly. You know our enterprise team, you know they're more focused on ina fifteen or twenty accounts, and even twenty could be a lot ofaccounts for them to handle if they start getting really deep in them. Youknow, are most one of our most most productive reps. he's down tothree accounts and he's just really focused on on expanding within those accounts. Nowthey're very large organizations. So that's there's room to expand and within those thosethree accounts, but it has to do with the person and there their skillset and sort of matching the the territory and the accounts to their abilities.How early did you guys go feel and did you struggle and or how didyou address the struggle of a growing company, you know, venture backed with allof these people that you're hiring that don't work in the office and sortof imbuing them with the MO on Goo DB culture at the same time thatyou know, I've got a hundred and fifty people around the world. YouGot Somebody in Korea, different time zones. How do you guys address that challengeof sort of cultural scaling with field sales people and people that don't workand home base? It's not easy, for sure. We do bring peopletogether for qbrs centrally. I mean we've we bring all of the sales leaderstogether. We have one in Europe and one in North America where there withthe head of sales and one of our some of our board members are CEO. So I feel like that's an important way for us to reinforce the culture. We also did an exercise I want to say three years ago, wherewe put sort of a common language around our culture and values. So,like mom going to be's, we have six core values. Some of themare like think big, go far, built together, make it matter,be intellectually honest. And when we did that exercise I'm everything in myself,like nothing really change about our culture. We just put a common language aroundit and it really resonated with people. And you know, even when we'rerecognizing people through our sales all hands or our sales kickoffs, we try toframe it in those common that common set of values and that we defined severalyears ago. That's interesting. Is there a psychographic, you know profile,as you guys have interviewed, hired, fired lots and lots of people.Any common themes or anythings that you think are specific to mango in terms ofthe types of people that you're looking to hire, particularly on the sale set? So we try to be scientific about it. We actually we do anassessment. Every single person that gets hired in a sales roll does an assessment. We use a tool called profiles xt and we took our top sellers andalso our bottom sellers and we tuned our assessment based on on those people andwe try to refresh that every six to twelve months. And that assessment isbroken down into three sort of core sections. There's like the there is a sectionon they're learning, their capabilities, which is basically can they do thejob, and there's a behavioral section, which is about how to do thejob, and there's a third section about, you know, will they enjoy thejob? So there's different facets on the assessment. There's things like,you know, manageability and coachability. Are they management? Can you manage them? Can you give them advice? Will be able to follow our playbook?There's a score for something called accommodating. You know, are they to commodatingwith customers and able to hold a line and hold a customer acountable to acertain timeline? So we use that assessment to help us iterate and refine ourprofile and also just to help us understand the people that were bringing on boardand you know where their sort of strengths and weaknesses and areas of development are. And is is that inform the I...

...would imagine it informs the interview processin the sense that if you determine that accommodation is a bad thing. Thenyou find ways to test for that. And is it? I guess theother question is sort of is it exclusively behavioral or are you doing a lotof case studies and kind of assignments to gage their ability to match to theprofile that that platform as well? Our interview process is Pretty Pretty Rare Ausso they have to do the assessment, they have to do interviews and thenthey also do a challenge, so they actually come in and present, doa presentation and do a pitch as if it were to a customer. We'rereally trying to understand if they'll be successful in the role. And the otherthing about these steps in the processes is it also helps them qualify us,like are they going to enjoy doing this kind of work, putting to getthe process of putting together the challenge helps helps them qualify as well. Soit's a combination of all of those things. And, like you said, likeyou may say see on the profile that somebody scored particularly high or lowon a certain facet and then you have to think about well, if theyhave a certain score or certain or maybe they have a certain experience gap,does a manager can the manager help cover those risks? Because their manager hasthat, you know, experience. So it's also about again, player position. Like you know, if they don't have experience doing a multistate coal orsale, but the manager has a lot of experience with that, then maybewe're okay, but if it were the case that neither the manager or theRep had that experience, then you know, we might be in trouble. Doyou guys use any kind of specific methodology when you're selling, to thepoint of the multi stakeholder sale, or using value selling or Miller hiymen oranything like that? So we we have a few different frameworks that we use. We worked with a consultancy called force management to come up with the valueframework, so you know, the value drivers and then the things that sortof build off of that, and then we also use medpick to qualify deals. So metrics, economic, oh my gosh, now I'm on the spot. Metrics. The pen is a paper pay for the process. I asidentified pains these champion. So yeah, so those are some of the frameworksthat we use. Got It. Another question I have is I sort of, you know, asked you a few questions offline about sort of building therevenue plan and thinking about Perp Productivity, but you've also been in charge ofdemand generation. So is the enterprise plan? Are you guys using bedrs or SDRsor you thinking about pipeline generations? It's the job of the REP todeliver the amount of pipeline that they need and, you know, whatever,whatever quota we give them, which is, you know, going to be xthere ote, that's how much pipeline they're going to generate. So wedo have an SDR organization which we've done a lot of experimenting and eneryting on, which I think is is natural and it's it's a good way to testthings out and do lots of experiments because they're the least experience part of theorganization, so it's really easy to pivot and come up with sort of newideas and run them. And so we do expect some pipeline from the fromthe STRS, but at the end of the day we try to drive accountabilitywith the reps, like they should not be setting back waiting for pipeline froman SDR or from marketing, like they own their pipeline in the and thethe revenue that they're generating. And in terms of planning, I work prettyclosely with our FPNA team and building our annual plan. And there really areonly three inputs to that, which are, is, our assumptions about sales productivity, hiring and attrition, and we build our sort of annual plan basedon those, those three inputs. And you know what I can sort ofprovide to the FNA team as they're building that is, you know, okay, we're going to create this hiring plan is and will actually go and stresstest it with the the sales leaders, like, okay, let's actually buildan ORC chart that they gets you to whatever, a hundred and fifty EA'sthis year? Is that realistic? Do we have the management capacity? Dowe have the regions that we want to open up? Will we have enoughsolutions, architects, things like that. So there's a little bit of backof forth that happens between the finance team...

...and the sales organization and I wouldassume that the in terms of sort of like demand generation, like to thepoint of named accounts, it really comes down to territory design and making sureor that each person has the right number of named accounts to get to whatevernumber you expect them to get to, and that your job in opts isalmost to provide that reassurance that, listen, we're very, very confident that thisgroup of accounts will get you to the number that you need to getto. Does that sound yeah, it's interesting to bring that up because we'respending a lot of time of thinking about territory planning right now and doing abetter job and a more sort of scientific job around territory management. So weconsider territory management. It's ultimately the job of the Rd to sign the accountsbecause, you know, as systematic as we could be in terms of identifyingdata, their data, that indicates a good account. You know, youhave to also be able to match the accounts to the people. So isthat player position concept right? You wouldn't give, you know, a repwith very little field experience, you know, an account like a big bank,like Morgan Stanley, for example, because you're a setting them up forfailure. But we can provide the managers as intelligence to help them make thosedecisions. And you know, we're actually in the process of rethinking how wedo territory management. So we're actually bringing in a consultancy to do some datascience analytics on our account account base to help us figure out which are theaccounts that we think have the highest or pensity to buy so that we canmake it simpler for the managers to assign those accounts. And then we're alsosupplementing our account data with more intelligence from third party tools like Data Fox andinside view and things like that. So that's definitely a topic that's very topof mine because I think it'll have a big impact on sales productivity if wecan get the territories assign more scientifically. Yeah, absolutely. Beyond mango,you know your your an advisor to a bunch of early stage companies. Whatare some of the trends patterns, you know, what have you observed asan advisor, maybe separate from your experience within mango DB? That determines,you know, in some ways, where you're finding that companies are successful orunsuccessful. What are the common themes? As you've been more part of thestart ecosystem, given the the success of Mango d be, what are yousunny? I mean I I've been advising these early stage startups like one,for example, is called Concord. They got acquired by Akamai. Another iscalled honeycomb and which is a product to help developers get insight into performance issuesand those are pretty like monging to be pretty technical products and have technical cofounderor technical founders who, you know, may not have a lot of experiencewith sales and marketing. And in the case of like honeycomb, the CEOand founder charity majors, like she's pretty amazing, like she's an engineer bytraining, but like she is incredible marketing instincts because she knows the developer audienceso well. But in terms of like the insides, I feel like thestartups and the founders that do really well they're coming from a technical background,of the ones that are trying to figure out what are the best practices,what are the right ways to build a sales and marketing organization and really thinkingabout it critically. You know, I think you asked offline, like youknow what some startup advice that you think is total bullshit, and I thinka trend right now or theme right now is like Hey, just build anamazing product, is all about product, and then your products going to goviral and you'll succeed. And I think that that may be true for asmall subset of products that have some inherent reality and have very little competition.But for most of us, most of us, you know, mere mortals, we need seals and marketing and you need to generate demand and if you'renot doing it, your your competition is doing it and you're missing out.So I think that those founders that start thinking about it early and try tolearn as much as they can and are open to feedback are the ones thatare really successful. It makes perfect sense. You know, there's a part aswe sort of think about, you know, paying it forward and someof the influences that you've had and maybe some of the content that you've created. What advice would you give to other folks? Are there books that you'veread that have been particularly influential or even mentors that you want us to knowabout? Sure, so, you know, I thought of two things I thoughtwere pretty interesting. One is a...

...podcast called ninety nine percent in visible. I don't know if you've ever listened to it, but it's all aboutdesign and the things that you may not notice around you that have actually beendesigned or thought about at some point. So an example would be there's areally great episode about the calendar, like why do we have thirty or thirtyone days a month. Why do we have twelve months? And it talksabout the different experiments that have been done around different kinds of calendars and therewas actually a someone who worked at a railroad that came up with a calendarthat was thirteen months, or each month was twenty eight days, and itmade it a lot easier to manage time tables and that calendar was actually adoptedby Kodak, I think, as recently as like the s and the reasonI love this podcast is it gets you out of your head in terms of, you know, what, what you think is the best practice or whatyou think is normal, because that's the way you can innovate is when youcan step aside and say, Hey, this is a the prescribed best practice, but why do we do it this way? Do we have to doit this way? So I really appreciate that podcast. It's called nine hundredand ninety nine percent in visible. Look. I would recommend is predictably irrational byDaniel Ralli, which is it's sort of similar in that it again getsyou to, you know, rethink conventions and it's all about the ways inwhich humans do things that seem counterintuitive and if you can understand human behavior.I mean I think that's sort of necessary to be a good sales or marketer. So that's that would be my recommendation. Those are so just repeating it backfor the audience. Predictably Irrational. And then ninety nine percent invisible,as the podcast. And in terms of you know, sales leaders or evenmarketing leaders or any kind of leader, who are some of the people thathave been particularly influential that you know we should know about? We should kindof Google and look them up on Linkedin. You know one or two folks thatthat you think have been particularly important? Well, I definitely learned a lotabout marketing from mom going to be CMO, Megan Eisenberg, who's prettywell known, as well as our former Ciro, Carlos Dillatorre, who's nowthe CEO of a company called Vera Security. So I thought it was pretty cool. by He's well known, he's famous. I hear about him allthe time. Yeah, and it's pretty I think it's a pretty amazing successstory. Like I was really bummed when he called me and said he wasleaving, but when I found out he was becoming a CEO is like,well, I get it. The other big influence on me is actually myfatherin law, Phil Murray, who's a had many marketing roles. He's hada marketing ow at a company called cyberex out of Boston. So it's reallyfun over Thanksgiving and other holidays to be talking talking shop, talking about convergentrates and, you know, outbound versus in downd SDRs and things like that. Absolutely are you from the Boston area? I'm actually from New York originally.I grow up in Queens. My my husband's from Boston. Okay,cool, awesome. Well, listen, Megan. Thank you so much foryour time on the show. We really appreciate it. congrats on the successat mango. Your career has been really, really inspiring. And any final advicefor people you know? So you mentioned the jungle gym, you mentionedSheryl Sandberg. Any last parting words of wisdom before we hit the Stop RecordingButton? As people think about you know how to be you maybe even particularlyfor some of the women out there that are trying to navigate their career insales and marketing, I guess my advice would be to be bold and justsort of go for it. I mean my one of my personal mottos isready fire aim, so don't worry so much about being perfect or having theperfect plan. Like you know, it's better to take action, even ifthe action is wrong, and learn from it, because in action is alsoa decision and you'll get better results if you just keep trying and it ratingon it. So just go for it and be confident. Absolutely, wewill do it. I assume, given what you just said, that youguys are growing. If people want to get in touch with you, eitherto, you know, seek you out from mentorship, to ask you questionsor even to apply for a job at mango, is there a preferred channelthrough which people should approach you? Is that okay? How should people reachout if they heard something that I liked on this podcast and they want toconnect? Sure, I mean, I'm on all the social media network sofeel free to connect to me on Linkedin or on twitter, or you canjust email me. My emails pretty easy.

It's Megan M Egaja, and atMango, tobcom happy to happy to refer people for jobs or hiring likecrazy. That's great, Megan. Thanks so much for being on the showand and we'll talk to you soon. Thank you Y I team at SamJacobs. This is SAM's corner. Other great interview, this time with MeganGil from mango DB. She was the first non technical hire at that companyand she helped them go public last year. They've been public for over a year. I think Megan had a lot of really, really good insights intohow to build and scale a complex enterprise sale and one of the things thatshe mentioned is it's a heavy field sales organization where they put a lot ofemphasis on the sales up themselves to generate pipeline. In fact that's one ofthe core responsibilities. They have a one to one relationship between the salesperson outin the field and the solution architect, which is the sales engineer, whichis the technical person that actually knows what Hell's going on. So one toone and so they have equivalently, if they have a hundred fifty people outin the field, they have a hundred fifty solution architects, although I thinkthe actually she mentioned that the ratio was sort of ideally three to one,so maybe they have fifty solution architects in my math is wrong. The pointis that when you're doing an enterprise sale that's highly complex, highly technical,you're going to need to provide an invest in technical support and part of thatgo to market motion is investing in sales engineering and support to assist the salesteam. Now, they did some analysis, and this was really interesting, andthey found that people with technical backgrounds in sales did do better. Sothey did better, but not a ton better. Nevertheless, it's pretty clearin the modern age that if you don't have technical experience of any kind you'reat a disadvantage relative to everybody else. And finally, I think what's reallyinteresting is that they figured out that the smaller the territory, the more productivethe REP and I think we've all probably had some notion or some intuition thatthat might be true. But you know, they're their enterprise sellers are managing.You know, she said twenty was a lot and I would think tento fifteen and she said their top seller manage is just three accounts and itsounded like one of them was a really big investment bank. So if youguys have ever tried to sell the investment banks, you understand why that's important. There's so many different people making decisions, so many different local little pockets ofbudget and it's really, really difficult. So make sure that when you're thinkingabout your territory design and your named account strategy that you have the rightratio for the size of the deal. For a truly complex enterprise sale,you might think about a territory that's really only ten to fifteen named accounts ifthat seller is a land and expand model where they can grow the account overtime. So before we go, of course, what do we want todo? We want to thank our sponsors. There there are the reason we allget to breathe oxygen, etcetera. Big Shout out to air call,your advance call center software, complete business phone and contact center, a hundredpercent natively integrated into any crm and outreach, a customer engagement platform. They efficientlyand effectively engage prospects to drive more pipeline and close more deals. Ifyou want to get in touch with me, please do it. A lot ofpeople have been reaching out to me and it's fantastic. You don't haveto just get any positive feedback. You can tell me, hey, theseare the types of things that we want to hear on the show. We'vegotten a lot of feedback we're working on new formats because of that feedback.So if you want to reach me, you can find me linked in twitter, anywhere you want. Linkedin's probably the best. It's Linkedincom the word inI N and then forward Sam f Jacobs, linkedincom in Sam f Jacobs. Ifyou want to talk to me about Washington, sports, politics or thesingularity, you can find me on twitter at Sam f Jacobs. I'll talkto you next time.

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