Selling at a tech start-up

Jay Goldman, Co-Founder & CEO

Recently, I joined the Sensei Labs team as the new VP of Sales. As I look ahead and make plans to grow the go-to-market practice along with my colleagues in Marketing, Customer Success, and Product, I’ve been reflecting on my past experiences as a start-up Sales leader.

As I was making the decision about whether to join the team, two questions came to mind: Can I see myself selling their solution and being really successful there? and Does the company itself have the right ingredients?

Based on these questions, I arrived at four criteria that any start-up should meet for me (or any Sales professional) to successful:

  • Is there a clear market trend that’s caused a significant shift and created a new need?
  • Do they have a great product that addresses that need?
  • Is there an effective way to get the offering to the market?
  • Does the company have the right cultural environment to be successful?

Most of the companies I’ve worked at had most of these. But at Sensei Labs, I believe we’re in a unique position to have all 4!! This is what makes Sensei Labs such a great opportunity to learn and drive results in a sales role.

The market trend in this case is how enterprises are shifting to more technology-enabled ways of working – especially now that people are working remotely more than ever – but they still need to deliver these massive and critical initiatives as usual. In most cases, the need to deliver even better outcomes is even greater. The pressure is on! How can everyone have visibility into their work and stay coordinated and accountable?

Our product, called Conductor, solves this challenge! It helps orchestrate very large initiatives in an easy to use way. It can be used by a consulting company to run programs for their clients or directly by large enterprises to enable their people to set project goals, collaborate easily, and hold each other accountable. Executives love the dashboards of progress and team members love how easy it is. It’s already installed in some of the biggest companies in the world.

A key differentiator for us is how we get the product to market. Most start-ups need to sell every deal directly to customers in order to build credibility and some brand presence. We’re fortunate to have something that larger consulting companies really need. We’ve built millions of dollars of revenue through this channel already – this is unheard of for a start-up! That success is already driving increased demand. We plan to satisfy global customers both through our partners and with direct support from the whole Sensei Labs team.

What strikes me the most about Sensei Labs is what a great team we already have. I’ve never seen a group of people who care so much about what they’re doing and how they can support each other. It’s a humble group wanting to do really well – truly inspiring.

If this sounds like the type of challenge and environment that would also enable you to do your best work and you have experience selling to larger consultants and enterprise customers, get in touch! I think you’ll be inspired too.

Geoff Coutts

Geoff is passionate about building high-performance sales teams. He has the most fun when he and his team are uncovering real enterprise challenges within the C-suite – especially when he knows we can effectively solve them. Through the Challenger Sales model, he brings a mix of science and art to the role and strives to help everyone on the team reach their potential.


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