How to hire a VP of Sales
There are numerous things to consider before hiring your VP of Sales
1. Your readiness: Are you ready to trust someone to run your sales team and hire talent? Do you have a great product and revenue? Your VP of Sales cannot fix this.
2. Type of Customer: This goes back to your ideal customer profile. What is the title of the buyer, what size of companies, how many decision makers are part of the buying decision.
3. Deal size: Has the VP of Sales sold at a similar contract value previously?
4. Prior team building experience: The VP of Sales must have built and hired a sales team before however big or small.
Once you have a general idea of what you are looking for is when you should start. Some ways to find your VP of Sales includes:
1. Your network: This is the best place to start looking for a VP of Sales. Your network will recommend potential candidates based on what you are looking for.
2. Job Posts: There are numerous websites where you can post a job such as LinkedIn, Indeed, Glassdoor etc. The biggest risk is only getting a pool of candidates that are actively looking for their next job.
3. Recruiters: There are some great recruiters and mostly very average sales recruiters. You must work with a recruiter that has prior proven experience working on sales roles with companies that are at your size and stage.
4. Activated Scale: We only focus on sales roles and have a large pre-vetted sales talent pool that we connect based on their prior experience selling to the buyers our customers are selling to. You can hire them hourly, part-time or full-time!
Questions to ask in a VP Sales Interview
There are numerous questions you can ask your potential VP of Sales candidate.
Here is a list of a few questions that highlight if a potential candidate will be worth hiring:
1. With the information you have, how big a team do you think we need now?
2. Talk about the teams you have directly managed and how did you build them?
3. How should sales, marketing and customer success work together?
4. What sales tools have your teams used and which haven't worked well?
5. What will your plan be to show your effectiveness in the next 180 days?
6. How do you set quotas?
7. What is your decision making style? Is it based on gut or on data?
How to compensate a VP of Sales
Most VP's of Sales have a base pay with a commission component on a fifty-fifty split.
National averages for base pay can range between $125,000 and $200,000. With a fifty-fifty split, their commissions will also range between $125,000 and $200,000.
The base pay can range depending on various factors that include:
1. The types of customers they are focused on winning such as Enterprise, Mid-Market and Small Business.
2. The sales cycle which means how long it takes to win a new customer
3. The size of the team they will manage
4. The hiring location of the VP of Sales
This compensation does not include other benefits such as bonuses, equity or benefits.
How to measure the success of your VP of Sales
You should measure your VP of Sales either on one of the following:
1. Net New Revenue: This is a clean structure for a VP of Sales and helps them to focus on bringing in new revenue. This will help you as the founder to help build the additional structure for renewals and customer success.
2. ARR: If your VP of Sales is responsible for ARR this also means that they are responsible for renewals and retention. While this aligns the company revenue goal with the VP of Sales' goal it can also make the VP of Sales spend a lot of time on other areas besides closing.