The Sales Hacker Podcast
The Sales Hacker Podcast

Episode · 3 years ago

54. How to Pick Your Next Company to Build a Great Career w/ Nick Worswick

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

This week on the Sales Hacker podcast, we speak with Nick Worswick, Global Head of Growth for WeWork. Nick walks us through one of the more impressive track records in start-up land. He discusses how to scale a multi-billion dollar SaaS company as well as the key elements to navigating a successful career.

One, two, one, three, three, pay everybody. As Sam Jacobs, welcome to the salesacker podcast. On founder of revenue collective. We are a membership, a private membership, for commercial growth operators all over the world where in seven cities now we just launched Indianapolis. If you're a VP level or above sales and marketing leader and you're interested in learning more, reach out. But that's not the point of why we're here right now. Why we're here right now is because we're going to talk to Nick Worswick, who runs all of growth for we work, which is a two and a half billion dollar arr business. Nick is a good friend and a mentor and has had an incredible career where essentially each of the companies that he's worked out over the last twenty years has had some kind of event. He was at introlinks that when IPO, he then went to Bull Horn, which was acquired by Vita. He then was at Grubhub, seamless through the IPO, and now he's that we work and we work as we work. So he's an incredible leader and executive and you're going to hear really about how to manage your career and how to build a sales and marketing organization at scale, at a very, very large scale, and what the key inputs are. Here's a hand. It's going to be all about training, training and enablement. But first, before we get to that interview, we want to thank our sponsors. We've got two sponsors. The first to show pad. Show pad is the leading sales enablement platform for the modern cellar. Show pads all in one platform and power sales and marketing teams to engage buyers through industry leading training and coaching software and innovative content and engagement solutions. Using the most comprehensive data on successful sales interaction, show pad fuels ai to discover, replicate an automate what works for top performers. So learn more at showpadcom forward, slash salesacker, of course. Our second sponsor corporate overlords. This incredible company. That is outreach, the sales engagement platform. Outreach support sales reps by enabling them to humanize communications at scale, from automating the soul sucking manual work that eats up selling time to providing actionary into tips on what communications are working best. Outreach has your back. Our reach just released a great new book called Sales Engagement. So if you want to learn more about this amazing new category, please do so. But if you're here to listen to Nick Worswick, which I hope you are, that's going to happen presently. Pay Everybody. It's Sam Jacobs. Welcome back to the SALESACER podcast. Today we're very, very excited to have both a very important person and a good friend, and so let me tell you about him. Nick Warswick is currently the global head of sales and marketing at a company we've all heard of. We work. Now Nick has been in high growth land for over twenty years. He spent eight and a half years at intralinks and help them IPO in two thousand and ten. He then went on to run global sales and service for Bullhorn, which was acquired by vist equity partners in two thousand and twelve. He then ran the corporate division for Grub Hub, which ipoed in twenty four routeen, and now he is essentially, although that's not the official title, but essentially the chief revenue officer or the head of revenue for we work. As you can tell, he's had an exit or an outcome in each of his last couple companies and he is well known across high growth land as somebody that is an exceptional leader, exceptional executive and also a good person. So, nick, welcome to the show. Thanks so much for them. I'm pleased to be here. Well, we're pleased to have you. We tend to start the show in a very simple way with your baseball card. And the good news, as you mentioned to me yesterday, is that we work has some, I guess, public bond. So there's some information that you can share with us. But first tell us your official title. So I'm officially the head of sales and marketing globally at we work okay, and obviously we know who we work is, or we think we do, or the weak companies. But tell us a little bit about the company from a run rate perspective, from capital race perspective, from a size of your team perspective. So in no particular order, we actually just reported to our public investors last night. So we...

...exited last year on a two and a half billion dollar run rate, which was a hundred percent growth. You're over year from two thousand and seventeen actually interesting tidbit. The company for its first nine years of existence has grown a hundred percent your rear every year, almost exactly a hundred percent. You're reeer. So we're going to obviously try to do that again this your little bit harder on a bigger base? Some might say. Yes, as the base gets larger, the that the task gets harder. Obviously, my team is about one thousand three hundred people globally. That's inclusive of sales, both pre and post sales, marketing and operations. So basically anything go to market focused is in my world, in my team's world, and you know, it's been a pretty wild ride coming up on two and a half years and we can talk a little bit about some of the things we did when we got here, but that's the sort of state of play of the business. Wow, okay, and you've been you've been building companies for how long? I actually, interestingly, got my career started in finance, so I went to kpmg right right after I graduated from Cornell. It's been a couple years. They're kind of cutting my teeth and if I'm being super candid, I actually learned that I didn't really want to be in finance and frankly, I don't think I was very good at it. So I got an introduction to the guy who at the time ran the the the price line family of companies. Joined that business, or series of businesses. been about a year and a half there and that's sort of how I got my introduction during Internet one dotto into the start up space. So that was about one thousand nine hundred and ninety seven. And what were you doing for price line at the time? Did you you're running your last you know, the the career that I know you as a sales leader, as a commercial operator, but will you did you go into the go to market function at price line or were you doing analyst work or something? I did so at KPMG. What I sort of what I learned was that I wasn't very good at I didn't have a ton of facility with numbers. Frankly, like I wasn't a really good analyst. What I was good at is is sort of going on client pitches and getting interested in what our clients businesses look like. So at Priceland I joined this really interesting group of people that was focused on new market development. So I spent it, like I said, I spend about two years there and really are a job at the company was to seed the ground in new verticals. So priceline at the time was very well known for its airline ticket business and we were actually trying to extend that platform into other verticals. So I was part of a very small group of people, they are about six or seven of us that went around the country looking at new opportunities for the business. Interesting so almost on corporate development, it was that, or develop it was court. It was more like Bisdev, but knew. I would really call it sort of classic new market development, and what I got really good at is figuring out through, you know, five to ten conversations with a prospective customer. Okay, here the things that are going to work in this customers environment that we're trying to sell. Here are the messages that are resonating, here the messages that aren't quite resonating. What works, what doesn't work? Take that back rapidly, iterate, you know, reset the the talk track, go back and eat with another five to ten customers. So I got sort of good at figuring out how to create something that the market would embrace after quick iteration with early adopters. That's how I would describe that role. And how did you. So from there, is it from there that you went to intro links? Yes, that's right, and that was also sort of a new market development role. So I joined that company in two thousand and our team, the company at the time, had created a vertical specific platform and they were interested in sort of taking that document sharing capability outside of that particular vertical that they got. They've gotten very good at servicing. So...

...our job was to figure out two or three other markets that we could take this horizontally, horizontally extensible piece of technology and apply it to a couple of other different vertical markets. And so I spent the first about year investigating two markets, to spaces, and we were lucky that we sort of had a lot of product markets fit in those two spaces that we were investigating. And ls two spaces, so the private equity space. So we went sort of deep into private equity adventure firm selling our service, and then we also went deep into investment banks and all the people orbiting M A transactions. That was the other group of folks that we went after and that was actually the sort of future trajectory of the growth of the business. There's a few folks into links is a fascinating company. So you spent over almost eight and a half years there. Over eight and a half years, tell us, for those that don't know what the company does, give us a quick overview and then give us. I mean that, I think, from a SASS perspective, or at least from a you know, this feels like the first major role that you had where you kind of moved up the ranks pretty rapidly and assumed executive leadership position. So tell us about day eight and a half years that you were there and all of the different ups and downs of that business. Yeah, that's right. So, so again, as a new market development person for the first year. What happened? Was We that that company do anything about interlinks? Has It was a document sharing platform for highly sensitive documents that that circulate in and around very detailed financial transactions. Right, so, whether it's a syndicated loan, and I'm a transaction, a group of investors looking at documents in and around a private equity investment or eventure investment. Again, you have to sort of cast your mind back to two thousand back then, SAS didn't exist. Right, this is before mark. Then you off coin the term. Back then, we called ourselves an ASP and an application service provider, and really what our job was to, as sales people in business, de Meliment people, to go out to the market and convince bankers, a golden sacks and the like that putting documents into the cloud was a safe, reliable and expeditious way to get everyone involved in a sensitive financial transaction relevant access to documents to help them make an informed decision about whether to invest or not invest. Basically, that's that's that was the thesis of a company. So my trajectory thereafter we sort of uncovered these two new verticals, is I quickly got, I think, relatively good at sort of telling the story externally and the thought was, well, we need to go hire a group of people internally to go expand the story externally, and so we had a thesis that we could hire a group of people, so a lot of whom actually you know, we had a group of people that went out and and really sort of evangelize this market, got all of these investment bankers and private equity folks to use the service and from two thousand to two thousand and nine, you know, the company sort of grew forty to sixty percent your rear and we had an IPO in two thousand and ten and my career trajectory was from this new market roll into a sales management role with increasing responsibility, mainly because we are trying lots of things that hadn't been tried before. Frankly, I made every mistake in the book, alongside of a few folks that I consider very good friends, and then we just got very good at identifying talent, training that talent, indexing that talent against a market and then wash rents and repeat the next year for another fifty percent geiger or another sixty percent gegar and so on and so forth. So skipping to the end over the course of that time, by the by the time I left the business, I was sort of managing all the business in the America's the time the company was about a hundred and fifty million revenue and I think my my Reem it was probably a hundred million. That in two thousand and you mentioned that you got you sort of I think this is a theme of your career. But identifying talent and then training talent. Did you have mistakes that you made that helped...

...you learn those lessons? How did you develop a training program what were some of the insights that you derived over those years as you as you built that team up in general, you know, grew two hundred and fifty million. Yeah, to be very clear, I think I literally probably made every mistake right and I think the way that you learn and the way that you get better is you have to experience those mistakes. You can cut down on mistakes by reading, you know, by talking to colleagues, by connecting through to some of the content that obviously you've done an amazing job creating over the last year and a half or so. But again, predating all of this, in two thousand we were sort of forced to figure a lot of these things out because again, if you remember at the time, this is sort of the beginning of sales to Dotto, when you were really figuring out what customer centric selling look like. You were really figuring out again what the mark, what the markets response to software is, the service was going to be. So a lot of the things that we were doing was sort of recasting the notion of software into a business buyer and that was a really interesting time to be in software sales because predating that it was very hard for a business buyer to make a decision to you know, stand up a piece of software because the cloud didn't exist right. So we had this really cool moment in time between two thousand and, I think, two thousand and six, two thousand and seven, where you were still a will to go out and talk to business buyers about the notion that putting their information, putting their data, buying software in the cloud and renting, not installing, in instantiating a you know, rack of servers was was actually the right way to think about rapidly to playing software that would help them grow their business. So during that period of time, hiring that first group of sales people of the it's funny, I looked back before the podcast. I look back at the group of my first cohort of sales hires. I distinctly remember in two thousand and three we hired these discohort of ten new salespeople and of those ten sales people I had a fifty percent success rate. So half of them filled right, half. And how long did it take them to fail? Way Too long, right. So not only did half of them fail, but I think that half that failed and again my fault, not there's that cohort of people that failed at the end of that it probably took US collectively, that those individuals and myself, nine months to recognize that it wasn't working right and I think part of your job as as sales leators to compress that time as much as possible. If you can get that, if you can get that learning in the first thirty days, because you are going to fill with some of your first hires, you're never going to get a hundred percent success in your sales hiring. Your job is to determine that really quickly and you know, mutually decide to part ways as quickly as possible. What is the mechanism or framework or what are your tips for making a call and thirty days as to whether somebody's going to work out, deep, deep invest been in training right. So a lot of people, there have been a lot of books written about and I think probably a lot of folks in the pod that are listening I' read a lot of these books about how you hire and there's a rubric, lots of different rubricks around how you hire and ensure a success and hiring. But you should you should spend as much of your time focused on that training recipe to ensure that those people that you've spent all of that company treasure hiring are as successful as possible and root out the ones that, for whatever reason, you made a mistake in hiring. So that first thirty days, those first thirty days, in my mind, are actually pretty prescriptive. Like we have our first two weeks. If you arrive at we work as a salesperson, you open your laptop, you get your Mac Book and you see two weeks where pretty much every minute of your day is spoken for. There's obviously some free time to hang out colleagues and such, but but pretty much every every minute of your time is spoken for for those first two weeks. Then you have a little bit of a break to do some on the field learning in week three and then you go back at it in the week four. So by the end of week four we have a very clear indication, because we're pretty prescriptive about, you know, those first several weeks while you're on board.

And so you have a clear indication because you have a testing frameworker, they're taking tests or that's right, and you know, you know where they and are you actually making a call on certain people and saying you know what, you didn't get to seventy percent on this commercial real estate proficiency exam. So thanks, but God bless you, I'm hopefully, hopefully, we handle things slightly, slightly more drippingdically than that. Yes, there an occasions where we mutually decided to part ways after after several weeks. That you up. This is why you're in the position you're in and I'm sitting here doing a podcast, nick, because it's diplomacy is not my strong suit. You're too humble. Said so so over indexing on training, what were your key lessons? We talked about this a lot on the podcast and it's always interesting to hear people's perspective. But, moving from an individual country, you know, did management come naturally to you? You mentioned you made every mistake in the book. What were you know from your perspective, and now you've managed managers for many, many years. What do you think the top to one or two mistakes that first time managers make that you know? You would tell the podcast audience on not to make over. You know when they when they take that leap. So I have this very interesting one. When I when I was placed into management for my first time, I was pretty young. I was in my late S and I had a couple of people on the team that I inherited that were in their early s, right, and so that's all. That is probably the most difficult position to be in in a first time management role where there are people in the team that have two or three times more sort of years of work experience than you do. And I actually think, interestingly, as I cast my mind back like that, was incredibly helpful to me because what I was able to do is sit with those people and say, look, you forgotten more in the last twenty years about the craft of selling thing that I've ever learned, right, because I'm you, I'm new in this job. But here's where I can be helpful to you, right, I can be helpful to you and how you craft your story. I can be helpful to you and go to market. I think I have some really interesting ideas around how we can prospect within this particular market, because I've spent some time talking to the first thirty five, forty five customers, so I had some instant credibility there. So I think the key is you have to index to your strengths, right, because in any management role that you take on, whether you're joining a new company or your first time manager, there are things you're either inheriting, their conditions of feel on the field of play that you inherit that aren't of your making, and you have to play to your strengths and you have to be very candid. You have to be very transparent about what your strengths are and radically transparent about what your weaknesses are. So I remember lots of conversations where I was like, Hey, that was a really cool meeting. Thanks so much. I learned so much from you, because you've been doing this for twenty years, about how you approach that customers problem. So I looked at it, at least first time, as this sort of shared learning experience. Right, we're in this learning journey together, and that's kind of the way I treat my team today, like my whole view of the world is we're on this crazy journey together. We're going to learn alot of them along the way. I don't pretend to have all the answers and I think if you approach you know, because sales people tend to be very smart, and what they want from you is transparency, they want honesty and they want you to provide them are cover, like, if you were to distill down into three nuggets, like what every sales person really wants from their management stack, like those are the three things they want, and I think if you sort of dissect those two or three things and really think about how you can add value, that's your job at the end of the day. What was the response of these, you know, these older folks that have been doing it for twenty years? Did you have some wins and some misss? In my experience inheriting teams it's it can be fraught with a lot of political conflict and turmoil and there's sometimes needs to be, you know, sort of a testing period and then kind of like you're either on or off the bus moment. Did you experience any of that? Yeah, and that's a great point, Sam and I think so. Yes, lots of wins, lots of Missus, I think, showing people some early wins, but get across that, whether you're providing the Mara cover or whether you're in a meeting helping them, you know, in a client situation, whether you're bringing them something that they didn't know about. Either go to...

...market strategy, whatever is you need to figure out a way to bring quick wins to people and typically, you know, that's through lots and lots of listening to your team. I think one of the things I do a decent job of is, particularly when I join a new companies, I actually don't I make very few and I was just pretty hard. Actually, we were it because we move so fast. Like I make very few decisions, if any, in my first thirty days, if not my first forty five days. Your job is to listen, your job is to take counsel from people that know way more about the company, the customer, you know, the management team than you do and then slowly, through lots of good questioning and interactions with teams internally and externally, start to formulate a inions. And then, once you formulate your opinions, your job is to be radically transparent about what you're going to do so that you deemstify for people that that period of time where folks are like I have a new I have a new boss, or there's a new VP or whatever it is that they're vibrating about, your job is to, as quickly as possible, create trust and transparency around what you're what you're going to be doing for the team. Well, obviously it's a great formula. So you were at interlinks for a long time. I guess there's sort of too two relevant questions. One is, how did you know it was time to go, because obviously inter links has continued on through a variety of different capitalization moments, including one where they were just recently acquired by by a member of revenue collective. That's right, not individually, but but Rishi Kana led that acquisition. But so how did you decide that it was time to go? And then how did you know? We're going to talk a lot about this, but how did you figure out that bullhorn was the place that you wanted to go? My counsel to people is when everything becomes a mechanism at the beginning, middle and end of the year to washernts and repeat, at least for me, some people find a lot of comfort in that and it's like I've got my machine working and all I have to do with turnal dial two or three notches. I just gotten to the point where it was an industry I had been part of for, you know, eight and a half years. I was ready to try something new and I had this interesting thesis where I was like Wow, we had this amazing four or five six year run after or the bubble burst of you know again, forty to sixty percent kager every year. I start of had this there's this sort of demon on my shoulder asking me questions about whether I was whether it like, are you good or did you get lucky? And I had this interesting moment where I got a call from this great recruiter and he started talking to me about Bull Horn and I met the CEO, aren't Pappus, who's in by the way, anyone who has a chance to work with art, phenomenal CEO, and we sort of just had this very like minded view of the world and it just looked a lot like introlinks to me. Five years prior right sort of seventeen million and revenue, figuring out how to take that next step to get to fifty million or thirty million first and then fifty million. Do We build an inside team? Do we not build an outside and inside team? Do we hire enterprise sales people? Do we not are impresse sales people? Should go out market? All those questions that I'd spent years sort of puzzling through an introlinks. I just had a lot of pattern recognition and then I and I was like, okay, cool. So I'm at a CEO that I think I could be in the Foxhil with for a couple years and and I really interested in the team that I'm at and they're all these problems that I've solved in a prior life. Can I do it again? So that was sort of the genesis of the decision that I made. Was it a search in the sense that, like you, were evaluating Bull Horn amongst the portfolio of opportunities? Had you been having conversations periodically, or was it just sort of luck, like this was the first conversation that you had and it turned out that it was the company that worked? I was getting again, frankly, I was getting a little crispy right. It just it had had been eight years by the time I started talking, and so I wasn't I would say that I had poked my head up, I was taking calls, I had met with a few companies, but this was the...

...first one that really piqued my interest. Got It and you know, one of the I remember you and I talking about about Bull Horn years ago and you shared with me that your conversation with the CEO is incredibly transparent about sort of the goals of acquisition. Walk us through that conversation, because I think a lot of the times, when you're an executive, having that direct dialog with the CEO about what they want to do with their business is often not not as easy as the way that you described it with bullhorn. But walk us through that conversation. Yeah, so again, without betraying any any years old confidences, that that between me and art. I'll be what I'll say is that, you know, art was was someone who, when I met him, had been at it almost ten years. He had just and you'll find this a lot with with people that have raised either other series C or a series D, depending on what stage of growth they are. You know the next leap, whether you're going from twenty, you know, from ten to twenty, or from twenty million to fifty million, or fifty million a hundred million. What I would say is it's very important that your interests are aligned with the interests of the CEO and obviously the CEO's, of lunch interests are aligned with with the investors. And what I found was that, from a go to market perspective, art and I were in lockstep right. So we did three or four things I think really well at that company. It was a company that was focused on the the SMB, and we decided to really invest in and enterprise sales team because we'd done that an interlinks and I thought that there was a market for this product up market. So we invested in that one too. We invested in international expansion. The company was a US based company and there was no reason. It was a great SASS platform leader in its category. Like why shouldn't we be selling this product in rationally? So we built a beach head in London and now I think, actually, don't quote me on the number, but I think half of their business or more is coming from companies outside of the US, right with their customer base. And the last thing was we had this idea that you could create sort of a robust business development function and get partners into the company to help you sell and in the space that we were in, that that that actually worked out pretty well. So on a go to mark, on the go to market side of things, he and I had chewed the fact during the interview process around Hey, what are our ideas to sort of spur some more growth in the business. And we came up with those three and some others. And then just on the sort of growth trajectory, he's like, look, I just take a very great confusion of capital from General Catalysts and some other folks and highland capital and some other folks, like how do we ensure that we get those guys a great return? You know, we certainly have to be growing thirty, forty, fifty percent, Kaeger. You know, how do we coming out of two thousand and nine when the world had collapsed, like, how do we read charge the growth in the company? So I just found that on both sides of the fence, right on the sort of on the investor side of the table, we were all very much in lock step, but then on the go to market side of the table we were very much unlocked up. And when you agree with your CEO on those two things, it's it creeds magic. In my mind, was the time horizon against these investments because you know, if you're going to move up market and higher enterprise sales people, those are expensive people to hire. You want to start an office in London. What are the proof points that you both of you use to confirm to yourselves that the you know, the investments were positive, Roy, that it was working. You brought up the right word, proof points. So I think again, what art and I in the CFO at bullhorn did really well as we said, okay, we're going to we're going to test, and Marco Bearish talks about this a lot as well. Right, you're going to go and you're going to because the investors goal is, you know, a hundred percent Kaeger and perpetuity, or at least for the next five years, until I get to take my money off the table. Right, like they're there. Go, go, go, and as long as you're showing any modicum of success. In a lot of cases, though, actually, at least in this day and age, poor, you know poor more capital into the business to allow that to happen. Well, you have to do is internally, is make sure that those things are working, because it's very disruptive to the business. Those those bets that you place that don't pay off, super disruptive. Right. So I think just...

...taking the enterprise example, at Bullhorn we placed some early bets. We hired I want to say, seven enterprise sales people and my first six months, maybe eight months, and we said okay, that's enough. I think I heard some really good people. We are going to test the thesis that we can move up market. We're going to build a really strong pipeline it as that pipeline starts to convert, will get back together. We'll sit with our you know, with our team, and make some decisions about whether we want to pour gas on that fire. So and that process sort of unwound. I joined in March, I would say, by the time we were putting our budget together for the following years. So by sort of October, November, December, we were confident enough, because we built enough pipeline and we close some interesting deals, we were confident enough that we wanted to double down, or even, frankly, that kiss, triple, quadruple down in that nest that next fiscal year. So that sort of the way that we that I think about is you test proof points are good like and you don't need a hundred of them. If you have a you know, if you have a robust pipeline and you have five or six people with contracts out and they're ready to buy and a couple of those contracts drop like again, you have to look at all the you have to look at the Tam of the market. You're going to do all that stuff. Assuming all that has happened, in my mind, you're ready to place that next bet. So you made those bets and and then four years later, I guess. As simple as that. But all I mean is it accurate that those three investments paid off big the feel that the European sales moving up market, I guess in the Channel Strategy, and then that led to an acquisition from vistas. And then what's happened since then? You've been part of an IPO and now you're at we work. So walk us through the last couple of years. So seamless GRUBUB was super interesting. That was a that was a great business. I sort of was always interested in these market place businesses from my time at price line. There's actually this crazy stat from a couple of years ago. This is three or four years dated, but if you looked at all of the consumer Internet companies, this is three years ago now. If you looked at all the consumer Internet companies, there were about thirty five publicly traded consumer Internet Internet companies for four years ago or so, and of those twenty nine were market place businesses. Right. So if you look at the the creation of wealth in and around Internet businesses, it's all been around market place businesses for the for the most part. So I was sort of just always fascinated with these market place businesses. So I joined seamless at the time prior to the merger with Grubbub, and again I was fascinated with the marketplace, fascinated with how you grow these market place businesses, and so my job was really running. They actually have a really robust as product which with the time when I joined the business was thirty five is percent of the revenue of the company. So I joined as the general manager of that business. So I had not had pl responsibility prior I was really interested in getting that so as a GM, my own sales, marketing, customer service and everything in between. So I really sort of got an exposure to the law side of the panl not not just the profits out of you, so to speak, which was a really cool learning experience for me and that was a great ride. You know, we merge with our largest competitive DRUBHUB. About a year after that we went public and then I joined. We work about four years after that. So one of the areas that I come to to discuss a lot of the time and which I think your track record demonstrates, is your ability to select the right company. So you know, and it's again the track record, is you're at we work before that and IPO before that, an acquisition before that in Ipoh. So how do you do it? What is your you know, what are your strategies for for company selection and how do you ensure that you're positioning yourself? And I'm not a sad I'm not saying that the only reason you've been successful is because you pick the right companies, but certainly that's had something to do with it. So how do you think about the process of due diligence and and sort of company selection when it comes to where you're going to work right? So, at a high level, I have a lot of people in my network call me for career advice and I love...

...those conversations, by the way, I love talking to people about opportunities assessment and what I find is that, for a variety different reasons, people tend to rush to judgment on an opportunity at the highest level and they do that for, again, myriad reasons. But what I always tell people is look, think about it. Think about it as if you were an investor. Right. Think about it is if you were a VC and the luxury that the VC's, by the way, have in a portfolio of a hundred fifty companies is they get to spread their risk over those hundred and fifty companies in the portfolio. So they'll sell you all day long. I know a lot of those guys and they're great, but and they're very smart, but their risk is spread across a hundred fifty companies. Your risk, your risk is index to a single entity. Right. And you want to have a good run, you want to you want to have an impact, you want to build a great team, you want to have staying power inside of these these companies that you join. You don't want to find a new one every twelve, twenty four months. Right. So what I tell people is approached your job search as if it was an investment thesis, and it is if you were an investor. And you do a couple things when you do that right. The first thing you have to do is you have to find a company that you think has real potential. Right. What I often see with people is they join a company that that is it could be early stage. That's fine, but they join a company that, if you really dig into the covers, it's hard to figure out how that company is going to have a big opportunity there. I. They're not playing in a big market. They're still figuring it out, whatever it is, and some people are like index to that, and that's fine, but if you want that sort of six, seven, eight year run, my advice is find something that at least has a real shot at success at a big market. Big Markets cure a lot of problems. Right. That's the first thing. The second thing is the team is incredibly important. You have to connect with the team, you have to connect with the CEO, you have to connect with the rest of the exact team. It's imperative, and all this sounds sort of like trite, but at the end of the day, I go really deep with people, I have dinner with them, I connect with people that work with them prior I get to the point where people are like wow, this guy is really, really diligencing me, not just the company, but really spending a lot of time with me as a person on the exact team to ensure that you really want to be in that foxhole with those people for the next four, five six years, right. So that's the second thing. The third thing is, this is where I think a lot of people get tripped up. Your experience, that your pattern recognition has to be relevant. So what happens is a lot of times a series a person, because they want to take their next step and they want to join a much bigger company, gets wowed by a company that's, you know, let's let's say a twenty million dollar company, into either a VP roll or a regional sales roll, and their muscle memory around what they've done with the two sales people in that series a company just has nothing to do with the fact that this twenty million dollar piece of business that they're going to be running now has to go to fifty million. You have like your experience in in everything in and around the sales apparatus has to be super relevant. You have to have potter recognition and I think a lot of people you can obviously learn, but you want to make sure that you're going to be your the value you're adding is going to be additive on day forty five, not on month eight or nine, because that will end in tears. There's probably people out there to say that's great, nick, but I don't want to just stay series a companies. You know, I had a great run with this. I took this company from zero to ten. But the money, honestly, the money is made at the end, right. So whenever the company finds out what it's going to be, when it grows up, whatever that endpoint is, that is when liquidity is ultimately realize in the people that are building a company at the series a stage. If you're in there and out of there in two years or three years, you often don't see the end. So if you want to be relevant at the twenty to fifty or fifty to a hundred stage, but you haven't done it before, but you're kind of mid s or something like that and you've had your first feet p title, what would you suggest to those...

...people that need to develop that competency but maybe feel like they're too old to take a step back and kind of learn as a neo fight? Yeah, great questions. So I think there are a couple things. First of all, if you're at a series a company and it's still series a after four years, something's wrong right, probably, unless you just don't have to raise more money or wildly profitable and your other on this growth trajectory. That so, if you're at US series a company for four years and you're not like the team's not growing, you're not learning, I would suggest you, after you know some define period of time where that you don't see, that you're reading the tea leaves and you don't see that's going to happen, I would suggest you move on. That's the first thing. The second thing I would tell you is, assuming you're like a high growth person and you want to be in those high growth environments right, the second thing I would tell you is to directly answer your question, go get that experience right. So go to do don't again one of these mistakes that I think I shouldn't say a mistake that's that's sort of judgmental. What up? One of the things that I often see people do that doesn't always have a great outcome is people will go to a job to take the title. So they'll take that VP job when they don't have the chops to do it because they had a great fit with a CEO or whatever. Whatever happened happened and they're just not ready for the job. So go get that experience. Go be a regional person at a company that is growing really quickly. You don't need the VP tone. Go be a director of regional sales for a company that's for an awesome company. That will slot you into the northeast roll where you're going to have inherited team of five grow to a team of twenty. Then you've got your experience. Do that for two years, do that for two and a half years, really get good at that, build your muscle memory around that and then go fight for the big job. I feel you. How willing are you, through the courses this due diligence, to fold very and let's say you know that. I think that's walk through sort of to the point of an investment perspective versus a different perspective. You know, is that something that you see is a lacking in people, which is they just get so excited, there's so much momentum that they feel they sort of have to accept two things happen. You're absolutely right. Stem the first is you get deal excitement and then then then you also get deal fatigue, right, and what I mean by that is you you tend to put your because until you're inside. Every one of these companies is rife with problems. Right, every one of these companies has tons and tons of interesting challenges, solutions problems. Like your job is like it's fun to get in there and unpack those but you want to make sure is the fit is right. So your job is to be again, relentless about that diligence to figure out whether you're putting yourself in a position for that next four or five, six seven you're run and so don't get overly excited and then don't get fatigued. Those are the two sides of the coin that I see all the time. Like, Gosh, I've had nineteen conversations. I'm fed up. Like now have to go meet with the other VC. She's in San Francisco. They want me to get on a plane and meet with her. You know, I I'm at the end of my rope. Stick with it. If you've gone that far. On the deal fatigue side of things, there's something they're keep pushing right. You're you're almost there, but then you know again. The flip side is don't get over the excited, do your diligence, ask the tough questions when you're sitting in front of that VC when she's talking about how awesome this business is. Talk to her about her investment thesis. Talk to her about what the competitive landscape looks like. Get Her perspective on, not just to seeeos perspective, just go super deep. Ask about like the other thing I see all the time is people don't ask about the CAP table. Right when you're we can talk a little bit about negotiating. You're doing a really good job for the community presenting a lot of information to people about how they should be negotiating their compensation. It's important part of things that you need to understand where you are relative to the rest of the people on the Cap table and if there's a CFO who's like a or CEO is not willing to share that information with you, that should give you pause. You're about to be part of, you know, hopefully, the executive team with this company. So so I don't know if I answer your question, but I think you did. In the past...

...you've mentioned in a question that you ask vcs to help diligence. I think it's about Tam, is it? Do you always ask the VC sort of wise in the Tam bigger is. Is that how you phrase it? Yeah, Tam is wildly important, right, and I asked to question. Ask Lots of questions when you when you meet with the investors, you should ask there's a list of like ten things you should ask them, but two of them are how big is a Tam? And then they'll tell you, but they'll always give you the sort of CEO's pitch deck view of the Tam. The second question you always have to ask is unpack that for me. Is that the existing Tam or you also including, you know, the next product development cycle where you're going after you know, this next next market segment that you haven't yet approached? Like be very specific about current and future Tam, because sometimes those things get co mingled in the conversation. And then the second thing I always ask, or the first thing I was asked actually, but literally in that order. Just walk me through your investment thesis. Why did you get excited about both the company and the team? Because they'll tell you again, VC's tend to revert back to why they got excited about the space and the company. You also want them to really dig into the team for you and be specific. You know, if you met with the marketing person. In the marketing person you were a little bit or you've heard some through some of your own diligence that maybe that marketing person isn't awesome. Like ask the ask a VC about the marketing person. They'll either say I'm not comfortable sharing or ninety nine percent of the time they'll like why you asking, and then you can get an into an interesting dialog. It's very important. Like the worst they can do when you ask these pretty probing questions is tell you not comfortable sharing, and that happens one in a hundred times. Yeah, yeah, and I think there's probably people out there that feel selfconscious about asking without again, to the point that you get to make these bets once every couple years. So you need to have the information before you make what is inevitably going to be a life changing decision. You, you know, treat it like it's the most important sales conversation you're ever going to have. It's your life if you're going to spent eight, ten, twelve, fourteen hours a day in this place. Like there's like I sort of think this notion that it's uncomfortable, that train yourself out ask the questions, role play at sit in front of the Mirror, sit with your wife or your husband's, that we are a significant other, your partner. Hey, I'm going to I want to roll play these questions with you, because they're uncomfortable for me to ask. Get really good at asking them. Yep, makes a lot of sense. Nick. We are almost at the end of our time together and one of the things that we like to do at the end of the show is pay it forward and acknowledge either content, great books that you've read, great leaders that you've worked for, great ideas you want to share. When you think about either people or books that you that have really inspired you, that you think we would get some benefit from. You know, give us some give us some names, give us some some options. Two books. There's this book called Five dysfunctions of a team, which I'm sure of a few people have read. Course, love that. That is sort of this notion of healthy conflict and a first team is something that I've really embraced. Actually, art the Papas to see see a bull or and hot us read that book and I make every one of my leaders that reports directly to me read it and I think it's actually sort of proliferated this way through the rest of the Org at this point. So that one's a huge one for me. And then the other one is this book called who by Jeff Smart. It's about sort of De mystifying how you hire people and how you predict whether or not people will be successful in your organization. That book, I think, is is super, super interesting. So those are two books I would would recommend. Awesome. If people out there are listening and they want to get in touch with you, either because they want to work at we work or they have a follow up question. Are you okay with that and you have a preferred communication channel? Is A linkedin email? What's your how should how should people think about getting in touch with you if they are yeah, so me, Emil, we work. Nick Dot Worswick, we workedcom awesome, nick, thanks so much for being on the show and we'll talk to you on Friday for Friday fundamentals. Awesome. Thanks so much, Sam.

I appreciate it. Everybody. Sam Jacobs. This is SAM's corner. We were honored and excited to have nick worswick on the show. Nick is is a good friend of mine is a very reliable executive more than a reliable executives, an incredible executive is track record is unparalleled and he's also a mentor and has given me a lot of advice over the years. You know, one of the things that we talked about was just managing your career and how to due diligence, how to do due diligence on a potential company that may be trying to hire you, and I think you know, one of the key themes that that emerges from conversations with nick over the many, many years that I've known him is is just you have to be patient and due diligence is so important and you have to be prepared to fold in a way that is very similar to an investor or even a poker player. You have to use new information as you get it. There's a lot of momentum that happens when you're looking at a company, particular at the executive level. You know, you've had some great dinners with the CEO. You know, maybe she's flown you out somewhere to some company event and everybody you've met has been incredible and that's all well and good, but you need to make sure that you do the due diligence, particularly at the executive level. The due diligence comes from reviewing the financial performance of the company, reviewing the state of the Sales Organization, revealing previous board decks, understanding the CAP table. So Nick is very specific about saying, Hey, you have a right to understand the CAP table and but the preferences are how much, how much money has been raised and who's invested in the business. He then says dudue diligence not just on current employees but former employees, on colleagues and professional relationships that are associated with the executive team. Really understand the executive team. Ask the VC's and the investors in the business what was their investment thesis and why? And how did they justify the Tam the total addressable market? So the theme of Nick's comments are about due diligence and you know it takes him when he I remember when he was leaving bullhorn. It took a long time before he decided to to go work at grubhub seamless and he folded many times. There were many opportunities that were presented to him by a bunch of incredible search firms and he didn't just take the first thing that was presented itself. He was prepared to walk away. Not Everybody's always in that position. That is a unique position, but I just want to underscore great companies are sometimes hard to find and you need to have patients and if you have that patience and you have a criteria, set of criteria that you think might be helpful, then you're going to be in a much, much better position to select the right company. So that's just one of the things that Nick talked about. The other thing that he talked about is how much he invests in sales training. He says, you know, it doesn't do any good to invest all this money in acquiring the talent if you're not going to invest in onboarding in training that talent in a repeatable, systematic way. And that's one of the first programs that he put in place when he got to we work and now they are if you heard that number, it is an incredible number. Two and a half billion in Arr so that's amazing. Next amazing. This has been Sam's corner. If you want to reach out to me, if you want to be a guest on the show, if you have feedback for me, please reach out to me on linked in. It's linkedincom forward, slash the word in and then forward. Sam F Jacobs. That is again linkedincom forward slash the word in and then forward, Sam f Jacobs. Thanks so much for listening and I'll talk to you next time.

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