When experiencing major growth, it can be easy to lose track of strategy and make rash decisions when dealing with your start-ups evolution. Having the right go to market (GtM) team under your belt can often mean the difference between success and failure. Sometimes, though, the real difficulty is in how and when you should hire, and as obvious as it sounds, who to hire?
When’s the right time to hire your GtM team?
As a startup, it's important to know when the time is right to expand your GtM team. 70% of startups suffered from premature scaling according to a study from Start Up Genomes, so there are a few things you should consider to avoid this.
First, if you have expansion plans, you need to think about how the extra head will help you achieve your strategic objectives, support the teams workload and add specialty functional value to your org. Getting the most out of the new hire is vital, so a core understanding of what their success looks like, and how you can measure it is essential. In essence you need your GtM hires to be impactful from the off, drive revenue and continue to fuel your growth mechanisms.
Finally knowing when to hire and being able to successfully hire in a set time frame are vastly different. If you have the intent to hire and can agree on a clear process, a hiring partner like Teem will ensure you meet your timescales. We have a number of proven campaigns including the 6 A* hires that NS1 made in partnership with Teem, taking an average of only 2 weeks to move from CV received to offer signed!
Managing VC expectations vs run-rate.
Another study by CB insights looking into the “12 Reasons why Start-ups fail” found that the biggest cause of failure was running out of cash / failing to raise new capital.
Hiring for the sake of hiring, just because you think it will help you hit growth targets, keep up with VC expectations, or improve your brand exposure, can cost between four and fifteen times the annual salary for VP’s and SE’s. With run-rate being king, prioritising spend will be the general rule of thumb. That could be hiring an experienced player manager (e.g Head of Sales) to create and execute sales strategy with minimum support, or by focusing on more junior sales hires from the SDR team to AE’s, with the strategy being driven by the founding team itself.
Can you retain your A* team with a diverse culture?
A Harvard review study said that diverse companies are 70% more likely to capture new markets than less diverse competitors. Partner that statistic with more than 3 out of 4 workers preferring a diverse workforce (Glassdoor), and it should be the icing on the cake for SaaS scale ups.
If achieving diversity is a struggle, check out Teem’s blog on how to hire a diverse sales team here: https://go-teem.com/blogs/view/how-to-hire-a-diverse-sales-team.
Along with building a diverse team you want your hires to be a perfect fit, whether it's culture and/or experience. Are they going to be the first boots on the ground? Then they will need to have first-hire experience. Are they going to be operating with large deal sizes? Then they need to have dealt with selling to enterprises etc. The qualifying criteria will be specific to you and your scale up alone.
Hiring the right GtM team to execute your growth plans can put excessive pressure on your operations. Whether that is cost per hire, lack of dedicated interviewing time, making hires that both stick long-term and are the right cultural fit, or the time it takes to get the hire through the door, a great hiring partner can advise on the market conditions, and minimise the time investment without compromising on quality.
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