Feb. 10, 2022

The 5 Keys to SDR Hiring Success

The 5 Keys to SDR Hiring Success

In today’s episode of the ‘Sales Samurai’ podcast, host Sam Capra, who helps marketing leaders in the retail space go beyond the sale/transaction, talks with guest, David Dulany, the Author of the Sales Development Framework and Founder CEO of Ten Bound. He is sharing keys to SDR Hiring Success.

Episode Highlights

  • 01:47 – David shares, he was running the SDR teams for about seven years at a different software company, and then started at Ten bound.
  • 03:00 – The salespeople got a lot of the glory and they were getting all the trophies and hanging out with the CEO, noticed David.
  • 04:38 – David points out, it’s all technology and we got a little bit away from the old-school methods of sales, the way they used to be.
  • 06:46 – Sam states, the SDR is the hardest position to fill to recruit for to hire for.
  • 08:15 – It's not an easy thing to do, it's not plugged and play, and it's different than recruiting sales reps.
  • 12:00 – They want to make sure that they design the interview process correctly.
  • 14:26 – Create candidate's scorecard, and ensure that there are some aspects of candidate’s background that could lead to success in the role, not just the resume.
  • 16:16 – David shares, we can send candidates a quick assessment and make sure that they're okay talking to strangers, handling objections, dealing with continuous failure, that basic blocking and tackling of SDR.
  • 18:22 - if we're hiring slow because we're slow, and the process is a mess on our hiring then we're going to lose those top candidates, says David
  • 20:38 – The fourth key is creating a simple project as a part of the process.
  • 22:02 – Sam enquires if David is looking for how candidates are prepared.
  • 24:36 – We can't sit on the offer letter for a couple of days. We have it ready to go and get them in, states David.
  • 29:43 – Managing SDRs is one of the toughest jobs because we have to be able to understand marketing, sales and do training & coaching.
  • 31:41 – Sam enquires that if David educates a sales leader around.
  • 33:47 – Sam asks David that how the SDR will look like in four or five years.
  • 36:20 - Always make sure that the outsourcing agency is sharing their playbook, their research, and the feedback that they're getting from the ideal market.
  • 38:31 – David recommends looking for demonstrable sales experience on the resume even if they've been selling Cutco knives, or Girl Scout cookies, etc. 

Three Key Points

  1. The tech industry has changed the sales profession. All the tools have made the many aspects of sales a lot easier and not as repetitious and time-consuming. But on the flip side of that, we rely too much on technology.
  2. We've got to be able to move fast, and have everything ready to go and lock them in as quickly as possible if we've got that top candidate.
  3. Sales leaders should focus on appointments and pipeline and how it's converted to sales.

Tweetable Quotes

  • “The technology is not going to make the sale; it's the classic sales training.” - David Dulany
  • “The reason that the SDR role was created is because businesses need pipeline and b2b businesses need to have 3x or 4x pipeline for their salespeople to be able to reliably hit their number”. – David Dulany
  • “There's a lot of pressure to perform and if we rush through the timeline, then we just cost ourselves probably six months”. – David Dulany
  • “If it's just a list of tasks that they've done, without anything, indicating that they've been able to succeed in any of those tasks, that could be one aspect of the scorecard”, - David Dulany
  • “The whole thing should be a tight, organized process so that if you do find that needle in a haystack of a credible person that you want to bring on the team, you can close them quickly” – David Dulany
  • “It takes two three months for somebody to kind of find their footing in this and then create pipeline.” - David Dulany
  • “If you can find a great diamond in the rough and they become a key part of your company, that's great for everybody.” – David Dulany

Resources Mentioned

Title Sponsors:


Speaker 0    00:00:01    Coming to you from Orlando, Florida, Orlando, Florida, and streaming around the world around the world. You are now tuned in to the sales samurai podcast. The only B2B sales podcast, providing unfiltered unapologetic views and tactics directly from the sales trenches. Here's your host, Sam Capra.  
Speaker 1    00:00:30    Welcome to the sale samurai to another episode of the sale. Samurai should say, thanks for listening. Uh, before we begin, do us a favor as always take a moment to subscribe and download on today's show. We're going to be discussing the five keys to STR hiring success. And I have an amazing guest with us today. David Delaney, the author of the sales development framework and founder CEO of 10 bounds. David, thanks for being on the show.  
Speaker 2    00:00:54    Hey, thanks for having me on. I'm excited to dive in  
Speaker 1    00:00:57    Barring the technical issues we had, you know, we're off to an okay. Start, right David.  
Speaker 2    00:01:01    Yeah, definitely. This is my favorite topic.  
Speaker 1    00:01:06    I gotta be honest with you. This was I, you know, and I think David, I, I reached out to you specifically around this topic because it is something I absolutely love the posts you made on it and talking about SDR hiring. So I'm going to get into the weeds a bit on it, but before I do, and I know you're all over LinkedIn, I know you're really big into thought leadership, but for the audience, can you give the audience a little bit of a background context around you and kind of what you've been up to over the past decade or so in sales and things of that nature?  
Speaker 2    00:01:34    Yeah, absolutely. So a lot of the software companies in Silicon valley, when they came out, they put their sales team into basically three parts, right? So now that you've got the SDR, the sales development reps, the AEs and the customer success team, and I was running the SDR teams for about seven years at some different software companies and then started 10 bounds as a way to really look at that function and do some research and advisory services to help companies to improve that. And so, yeah, that's been about, oh my God, it's been five years now working on that. And it's been crazy. So mostly software as a service companies in Silicon valley, they have SDR teams. They're looking for good resources and advice on how to run those. And that's where we come in.  
Speaker 1    00:02:25    That's awesome, man. Hey, so tell me a little bit, cause I, you know, I always love origin stories behind people. I love to understand a little bit more. What, what got you interested started in sales? I don't think anyone's ever was a kid saying I want to be in sales. I'm just always loved the origin story.  
Speaker 2    00:02:40    That's funny, I'm cynical like liberal arts major had no idea what I wanted to do, you know, but I've always been super curious and I did a bunch of traveling after college and I came back to the bay area where I'm from and needed a job basically, you know, and I started working as sort of a coordinator type of position at a company. And I noticed that the salespeople got a lot of the glory. You know, they were always like, this is like 20 years ago, plus they were coming in and out whenever and they were getting all the trophies and hanging out with the CEO and it was like, wow, that looks way cooler than what I'm doing. So I tried it and that was like right when inside sales was getting really big and, and that type of thing. And I actually got into a sales training company. So I was selling sales training and also taking a bunch of the classes and just getting deeper. And the more you learn about it, the more interesting it becomes. And obviously the money's good and it's a great profession. So  
Speaker 1    00:03:48    That's awesome, man. I absolutely love it. And so now you've been doing this, I was going to LinkedIn. I have a cheat sheet. LinkedIn is everybody's cheat sheet. You've been doing this. I don't want to say to that cause I don't want to age anybody, but you've been doing this a long while. You've been in this game for a while. So you've seen a lot of things in that couple decades. Like I always ask, like what have you seen in sales and is improved for the better and the opposite. What is in sales has gone the opposite direction has maybe made a, a left turn where it should have made a right turn or there's some hurdles or the worst thing. If you want to say that that's impacted sales in the past couple of 20 years or 10 years, if you will.  
Speaker 2    00:04:26    Yeah. I mean, so it's a double-edged sword. And so it's kind of two of the same thing. So I'm in Silicon valley and we're in the tech industry. And so the tech industry has really changed the sales profession tremendously. I mean, we could go, the whole podcast could be about that. All the tools and everything has made it. So, so many aspects of sales, a lot easier and not as repetitious and time consuming, but on the flip side of that, I think that we definitely rely a bit too much on the technology and, and sounding like a dinosaur, the new generation that's coming up. It's, it's all technology. And we kind of got a little bit away from the old school methods of sales and, you know, the way it used to be, which you know, was more relationship based and like digging for business issues and stuff like that. So I think it's kind of a double-edged sword.  
Speaker 1    00:05:20    I love that question for the simple fact that, you know, if anyone's been listening to our show for the past 30, you know, I probably started asking it about 25 and it's amazing how everything kind of revolves around that same pro con technology is the enabler, but it's also the disabler of a lot of people, right? To your point, it allows you to drive efficiencies and scale, but then it also, I think some, I put, it makes a lazier rep just that much lazier because they're depending on the tool to send out 150 emails and to send out 13 LinkedIn request and hope for the best. Right. I love, I don't love to hear about it's a running theme that I'm hearing quite a bit. So I'm, I'm glad I asked the question of you.  
Speaker 2    00:06:01    Yeah. I mean, the technology is not going to make the sale. It's the classic sales training that I, when I came up through the sales training ranks 20 years ago, it's still the same. I mean, you've got to be able to dig for business issues and, and understand what the pain points are and then be able to connect your solution to those pain points in a way that makes sense. And also be able to build trusted advisor relationships with people over the long-term. And it's like, you can't do that if you're just sitting behind a deck going slide after slide and not, not listening.  
Speaker 1    00:06:38    You're right. I always remember the whole Zig Ziglar. Right. People buy from people. Right. I'm really dating myself. I don't know if any of the younger generation remembers they should. Yeah. Here's a class. But yeah, I remember that, right. Yeah. I mean, that's a big thing. Trust is a big thing, a part of the sales relationship. So it's good to understand that piece. So let's hop in because this is something we could, I could literally probably spend five podcast on just this, this topic alone. So I'm going to give you my first, my thoughts on this. I want to get your perspective. Then I want to get into the weeds. I actually believe David, this is the hardest position as a sales leader, myself, I feel the SDR position is the hardest position to fill, to recruit for, to hire for, in my opinion. And I'll give you some and tell me if I'm off base because I'm wrong before I've been married for 23 years, I've been told I'm wrong many a time.  
Speaker 1    00:07:28    That there's a couple of things that make me believe that, right? Because in my role, I find that for an ag you're typically right wrong and different, you're hiring for experience. You have SAS background, three years, you're in the retail sector. We sell a retail tech stack, all those kinds. Well, an SDR typically doesn't have that, or they're coming out of college. You need a playbook, you need training. And then the tenure is six, 12 months before they either hate, say wash out or they want to get promoted to the next level. So it's kind of this revolving door. Am I off base? Am I looking at this entirely? Am I doing it wrong? David, are those the challenges you kind of see before we kind of get into how higher room is that what you're seeing?  
Speaker 2    00:08:10    No, that's, that's essentially how 10 bounds started because there was all these people and resources and investments happening in this very critical part of the business and not a lot of guidance and then how to do it. So you're not off base whatsoever. It's a very critical piece of your sales strategy to get right. And it's very difficult to do. And so there's just a lot of people have different ways that they think about recruiting and putting the team together for the SDR team. But, you know, to your point, it is, it's not an easy thing to do. It's not plug and play and it's totally different than recruiting sales reps. So  
Speaker 1    00:08:51    Without a doubt, I love to get your opinion. Like, like as we get into this subject around the five keys of hiring SDR successfully, you know, I find along that path, that on top of those two caveats that, you know, if you're running a pretty lean organization, you're a startup, right. You're kind of a Jack of all trades. You're a VP, that's leading people, but also selling. And you're kind of, you're pulled in a lot of different directions. Let's say you do bring on the right person, then training that person. There's a whole, I hate to say the word time stuff, but there's a time commitment. Like that's another caveat that people don't typically think of past. Okay. We've made an offer. They've accepted now. They're coming on that I think is even more challenging from that aspect as well, David.  
Speaker 2    00:09:35    Yeah. I mean, that's critical. And so you kind of have the spectrum of companies where if it's two founders, you have a product there's product market fit and you just need to get appointments all the way to a big software company, because most software companies have SDR teams. So the big software companies where it's the SDR program is essentially like a university and they look at it as a talent pipeline, just as much as a sales pipeline. So first you've got to think of where is your company on that spectrum based on what kind of, because to your point, if you're a tiny company with two people and you just need appointments, like you're, you're not going to be able to sit there and create this amazing university and bring in people through this awesome onboarding program and training program and you just need appointments, right? So they might not even be the best case scenario to get an SDR. Like you may just need some super entrepreneurial person who can just do everything all at that point, that stage in the company. So you really got to think of where you are in that spectrum on the life cycle, and then like appropriately build out your SDR program.  
Speaker 1    00:10:49    I'm actually going to circle back because I want to get your opinion on when is the time to hire an SDR versus outsource to a third light. I mean, if I'm not big in like, what is that kind of that critical point where you need to make that decision and what's the right decision for you. I know there's a lot of layers to that, but let, let's talk through the five keys because there's a number of these, of the five, probably four of the five, if not all five jumped out at me. But the number one thing that you pulled out is determined your timeline. Help me understand that. I kind of get the crux of it. I want the audience to understand I'm kind of going to walk through it a bit, what you mean by determine your timeline.  
Speaker 2    00:11:23    Yeah. So first of all, there's the ramp period of getting them up to speed. There's the, the training period. It usually takes, you know, two or three months to figure out if they're even the appropriate person and they can actually do the job. So you're talking a three month period before you're going to start to see any production, even if you were able to hire the perfect person and you have everything, everything in place. So, and you don't want to rush through this because people interview well. And, and like you said, it's, it's hard to know what someone's capable of in the interview process, because usually they're more of a junior hire as an SDR. So you really want to make sure that you design the interview process correctly. And that takes time. You know, it takes a couple of weeks, at least maybe up to 30 days to really make sure that you've got the right candidate and put enough time and energy into making sure that you don't get the wrong person on board, right. Because the recruiting process is so critical for this. So now, now we're, we're talking 120 days before there's any appointments or pipeline being created. And so you really have to determine that timeline and make sure that you're being realistic and you're not rushing into just getting a person in the seat as quickly as possible.  
Speaker 1    00:12:48    Right. So kind of what the thought process behind that is this, isn't a flip of the switch. You know, I build that, they'll come and day two, they're sending appointments for me and I'm rocking and rolling. I got to map that out from that standpoint, right. David,  
Speaker 2    00:13:02    And be, be realistic, right? Because there's already a lot of pressure on, on them to perform. And if you're sitting there going, Hey, I talked to you on Monday, I hired you Wednesday. And I want appointments on Friday. Not that anybody would do that, but you know, I mean, we need the it's like taking a step back. The reason that the SDR role was created is because businesses need pipeline and B2B businesses need to have four X, three X, four X pipeline for their salespeople to be able to reliably hit their number. Right. So there's a lot of pressure to perform. And if you rush through the timeline, then you, you just cost be yourself probably six months. So,  
Speaker 1    00:13:45    Yup. That helps me. I mean, I think sometimes when we're putting these plans together on head count and quotas and four X pipeline, how are we going to get there? Well, let's add two more SDRs to build top of the funnel. Sometimes it can be really reactive and not thinking through, like you said, let's be realistic in what we have to do. This may not impact us for 2022. It's really going to impact us for Q1 Q2 of 2023. I'm giving you some hypotheticals there, but the timeline is critical, right? Dave,  
Speaker 2    00:14:12    Big time, you know, and really thinking about this higher as a key strategic hire versus just an, and this gets into the next part of the five. It's not just, oh my, the VC's nephew just graduated from Chico state and needs a job. You know, that, that  
Speaker 1    00:14:32    That's not a good hiring factor. That's only way I hired David. You called me out on the podcast.  
Speaker 2    00:14:39    I mean, that's perfectly right. And he showed up on time. The next one is, we really recommend that you look for some track record of success, that's verifiable. And so we, the second one is create a scorecard by candidate scorecard and make sure that there's some aspects of the candidates background that could lead to success in the role. You know, not just the resume,  
Speaker 1    00:15:08    Give us an example because that is a tough one for me. You know, I can't ask the sales questions because maybe they don't have the sales background. Like what are some things that are tangible, that are verifiable, that you would say, Sam, this is something you can kind of hit your wagon to and build from what are some examples of that, David?  
Speaker 2    00:15:23    Yeah, so there's a couple of things. One is just evidence of achievement and it doesn't necessarily have to be sales necessarily, but there should be some verifiable evidence of being able to push through something and achieve it beyond their college degree. And that could look like the, an award, a certain citation, like different aspects of their background. And you've heard the old expression that the past performance indicates future success or something like that. You really want to see those things. So if it's just a list of tasks that they've done without anything indicating that they've been able to succeed in any of those tasks, that could be one aspect of the scorecard that you look at  
Speaker 1    00:16:11    Without a doubt. So a, we want to determine our timeline set, realistic timelines, w when we need to hire, and when do we need to start the hiring process to account for the interviewing the ramp up time. So they're productive and we're setting realistic expectations. Second is the candidate card, right? Quantifiable you could tie back to that. They've been able to achieve things that may not be sales related, but could be, they won an award, a citation, they worked a job plus got a 4.0 in college. They were able to multitask those types of things. Those are kind of the one, two, right? David.  
Speaker 2    00:16:45    Yeah. The indication of being able to complete something. And you've got some proof in, you know, the other quick thing on the scorecard is there's a lot of assessments out there in the sales world that translate pretty well to SDRs. And so you could send them a quick assessment and just make sure that they're okay. Talking to strangers, handling objections, dealing with continuous failure, like, you know, the basic blocking and tackling of an SDR. If it comes back, then the assessments all negative, then it's just, you've saved both sides, a lot of anguish. Right. So, yeah,  
Speaker 1    00:17:24    That's a good call-out. I mean, I think that pendulum with assessments when used the correct way, like PIs and the calipers and all those things out there, it can be extremely valuable. Uh, something that's a good call out. David. The one is streamlining the process. Talk to us a little bit about that. Well, that's a big one that I want to get my arms around a bit as well. When you say streamline the process, help me understand that a bit more.  
Speaker 2    00:17:46    Yeah. I mean, so this is kind of going along with the timeline. Like there's a lot of the competition right now for the top candidates in this field and you want the best possible candidate. You want them to be able to come into your organization as quickly as possible once the scorecard is, is all. And so, and don't drag out the process longer than necessary. And so just identify like a checklist. Here's the people that they're going to need to talk to in the next one, we'll get into it. But here's the people, here's the exercise that they'll go through. Here's the presentation, here's the assessment. And the whole thing should be a tight organized process. So that if you do find that needle in a haystack of a incredible person that you want to bring on the team, you can close them quickly.  
Speaker 1    00:18:37    Do you find that that's a, probably a bigger issue than maybe even something like the people that drag these processes, they have this very arduous process, really for no reason then, Hey, we've always done it this way. Do you find that that's actually a big challenge for organizations being nimble and being agile  
Speaker 2    00:18:54    That way? Yeah, it definitely, I mean, the old standby is hire slow and fire fast, right? Because you want to make sure that you get the right person and then if it's not working out part ways, but the issue with that is if you're hiring slow, because you're just slow and you can't get everybody on the phone and it's the process is a mess on your hiring, then you're going to lose those top candidates and they're going to get snatched up by a different company. So be careful in who you bring on the team obviously, and put them through a set process, mean, just make sure it's a tight organized process and that it doesn't drag things out.  
Speaker 0    00:19:37    You're listening to the sales samurai podcast. We'll be right back after this break  
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Speaker 1    00:20:15    I love that piece. You know, I know we've done in our, our operation. I make an appointment we're starting that hiring process to get everyone's buy-in Hey, over the next couple of weeks, going to be doing X, Y, and Z, I'm going to need some availability. I'm going to need some flexibility, get their buy-in ahead of time. So they can be more flexible because everybody's calendar is so crazy that I think it's part of the hiring manager needs to set proper expectation to whoever needs to be involved. Right, David, Hey, I'm going to need you. I need some flexibility to make this happen so we can streamline this process. Is that fair to say?  
Speaker 2    00:20:48    Absolutely. And with Google docs, for example, there's really fancy systems, but just with a simple shared spreadsheet, you can share the score card around and just ask the people. Let's make it a little bit more. Data-driven ask the people to give a one to five, you know, on the five big aspects of what you're looking for in the candidate, and then pool up that score into something usable versus what most companies, a smaller companies, you know, they'll just say, Hey, did you talk to Bob? What'd you think? No. Okay, thanks. You know, that's not very data driven. It's, it's important for the gut reaction, but you know that you need a little bit more data there.  
Speaker 1    00:21:31    Gotcha. So that kind of leads us into, cause we were talking about, I, it kind of trickles into the fourth, which is create a simple project where assignments as a part of the process helped me understand that a little bit more kind of what your thought process is around that.  
Speaker 2    00:21:44    I mean, back in the day, when, when we were in the office, you can just print out a list of old leads and like listen to the call and have, have them call and just see how they did something. It, because it's all theoretical and it's just talk and tell the rubber hits the road and you're actually calling leads and talking to real people. That's when you can really see how they hold up and whether or not this would be a good fit. And so that could be one, another one could be a presentation on whatever they're selling right now, um, is a classic one. So whatever you're selling right now, or if you're just coming out of college, sell me something, give us a presentation on it and you can kind of see how they do their preparation and how they hold up under questions and stuff like that. Some kind of exercise to be able to see them in action.  
Speaker 1    00:22:38    What are you really looking for knowing that they don't maybe have the sales app human. They're not going to have the right, maybe not the right technique or whatever the case might be. What are you really looking for? How they prepared? Like, what are you really looking for? What's kind of the criteria. You kind of go by David when you're kind of doing this to say, Hey, there's something there. Or, Hey, there's not much that help you understand that a bit more.  
Speaker 2    00:22:59    Yeah. I mean, so especially in the way that businesses running, especially in the tech industry is they need to be able to clearly articulate their points quickly. It gets to the point fast, make sure that, that you can understand the point that they're trying to make, be able to communicate in a way that's persuasive and not crack under pressure. I think that's the main, the main thing that you're looking for from an assignment like this or a live demo is if you start to ask them a few questions, how do they handle it? Because that's what his SDRs do all day. You, you literally, you're making calls, you're emailing you. You're trying to get into that conversation. And if you can't handle it, when you finally get in there, you're going to have a really tough time.  
Speaker 1    00:23:45    Gotcha. Makes sense. And then the last one that I know, there's a couple things I wanted to dig in on, do not hesitate when you find a strong, that kind of goes back to that whole streamlined the process. Right? I think that kind of dovetails, but tell me what you made it a point to put it as number five. Any other thing that kind of layers into that? When it says find a strong candidate don't hesitate to pull the trigger?  
Speaker 2    00:24:05    Yeah. I mean, so it's kind of a puzzle piece. So this is the final one because you and I both know one really strong a player can completely revise a whole company. I mean, that's how important this is. So if they've made it through the process and you it's all systems go, you've got the data, they're going to get snatched up quickly by another company. Like we were talking about it. And so you've gotta be able to move fast to have everything ready to go and lock them in as quickly as possible. If you've got that top candidate,  
Speaker 1    00:24:40    I think that's part of that nimble and being agile. But I find that that's actually a big miss for a lot of organizations, even within my network, as I'm talking with people, Hey, it took us three days to pull together an offer letter. Like why would that take you that long to pull it like that doesn't make sense. That's templates, you just plug in two or three things, but speed is of the essence, right? In this scenario, especially in today's job market, probably more so than ever  
Speaker 2    00:25:03    Big time. I mean, yeah. They call it the great resignation. I don't know when this is going to be published, but hopefully it'll be over by then. People are just, they're working from home. They have a lot more flexibility. There's a lot more choices out there and people are one, two years at a job and then they move on and it's just, it's a different world. Right. Then again, if it's all systems go, you got to make a move. You can't sit on the offer letter for a couple of days, have it ready to go and get them in. And so  
Speaker 1    00:25:35    What's your thoughts on, cause this is a position and I don't know the number, but I'm assuming it's probably getting less than less because people in today's market are trying to get an ag position, probably have the ability to do so, but about bench strength for the SDR, like, should this always be something you're recruiting for to try and backfill, even for small organizations that may not have a recruiting team, like, what's your thoughts around bench strength to try. And because we do know that that's a revolving door of people trying to get promoted, moving on. How would you educate or advise a company on being prepared for that imminent departure of someone as they move on with their career?  
Speaker 2    00:26:14    Yeah, definitely. I mean, and that's how the bigger successful companies really have it set up. Like it's, it's almost like an academy and they've got a, the SDR playbook and all the training and coaching and the, the expectation is kind of upper out. I mean, either you're coming in and so in a perfect world, the team is performing at a very high level at all times because they have the right direction. They have management, they have enablement and they're equipped to be able to come in, start producing within the first couple of months, do a great job for a year and then they're promoted, right. But, you know, Hey then you take it to the smaller company. You have to ratchet down the time and energy and ability of somebody to be able to help these people out. But I, I would say that the absolute minimum would be open a Google doc writing version and just start to document some of the scripts and the, the way that the, if it's a founder led company, how do you talk to customers? What are their main pain points? What's a persona that you should sell to try to document some of that as much as possible, get it down, and then give that to the SDR as, as the sort of the repository of knowledge, the SDR playbook, and have them keep working on it. Now the next person comes in and hopefully they can train them. And then there's two people and at about six SDRs, then you're going to have an SDR manager. And that's when it becomes a real program,  
Speaker 1    00:27:50    It brings up a good point. I liked the methodology behind it, right? Bring all one, start developing the playbook what's working. What's not keep iterating. And then that becomes kind of the training foundation. And then as you keep growing, you bring on a manager to kind of handle that component of things. I've been seeing this hover around LinkedIn quite a bit. I want to get your thoughts on it. Cause this does dovetail really nicely into our conversation. Does the SDR in your world, do they roll up to sales? Do they roll up to marketing? Like who should that role roll up to for lack of better terminology in your opinion?  
Speaker 2    00:28:22    Yeah. You know, it's an interesting question because from a training perspective, coaching, mentoring, and learning the ropes about how to deal with customers, then it definitely makes sense for sales. Now, the issue there is that sales is looking for the output from the team. They're not going to be involved in all the top of the funnel stuff and conferences and events and branding and all the stuff at the top of the funnel that then feeds into what the SDRs do everyday lists, building lists and scrubbing lists and prioritizing and stuff like that. The salespeople have no interest in being involved in that. And rightly so, because it's a marketing function. So it makes a lot of sense for them to roll up to the marketer because they can really be in lock step with all the campaigns. Now, the downside of that is that the marketer has never been in sales. We usually the best marketers were salespeople and they became marketers, but that's another, so the marketer doesn't have the, the experience sitting face-to-face for, with tough customers and negotiating and doing all the stuff that salespeople do. So long-winded answers your question, the kind of the standard, the standard way that we look at that is especially in a smaller, who's got the most time that they can spend to help develop and enable the SDRs. Is it the marketer or the sales leader and whoever steps up and wants to do it, you got the job.  
Speaker 1    00:29:55    Gotcha. Yep. That makes sense. And I would assume that to your point, cause you make a great point on both sides of that, of that fence is that this should really in an ideal world, be a tag team, right? I mean, there, there should be, maybe it didn't direct line to someone in a direct line, but they're kind of the tip of the spear when it comes to the liaison, being a liaison between sales and marketing, because you're right. It tells us we want to get involved in the copywriting and the list building and all this stuff that may happen with the very, very, very top. But that's something that's going to impact the STR they're going to have more firsthand knowledge of what's working versus what's not, it can help educate marketing from that standpoint. Something that's a good catch on your side, David.  
Speaker 2    00:30:32    Yeah. I mean it's sales development is sort of the connective tissue between, you know, two or three different departments and executing, you know, in order to build pipeline and the managing, managing SDRs is one of the toughest jobs out there because you really have to be able to understand marketing and understand sales and do training and coaching. And usually it's, something's off the rails, you know, 90% of the time. And it's a really tough job, but great SDR managers are in high demand right now in the tech industry. And they can make really good money. I mean, because it's such a rare skill to be able to do well. Yeah.  
Speaker 1    00:31:16    So let me ask you, and this is, I've heard this bubbling around as well within my network, at least like you can always make the excuse as a sales leader. Hey, we haven't given them enough training. Hey, they, we haven't done our part. Like we're the main KPIs, like as they're ramping up, is it all about appointment? Like what is the criteria you use to say, are they working? Are they not working? Because you said, Hey, hire slow fire fast, but what would you educate a sales leader around, Hey, here's the KPIs that you should be expecting month two, month, three and being realistic around it.  
Speaker 2    00:31:49    Yeah. So we really recommend a start. What kind of would unify the different departments from marketing to SDR to sales is pipeline revenue, and then even win rate the conversion rate of how much of the pipeline is translating into revenue and not as much about the specific activities that somebody is doing during the day, because it's changing all the time. It could be cold calling. It could be emailing, it could be LinkedIn outreach. There's all sorts of different channels that you can use and monitoring that way back in the day, people used to call bowling alleys. It's like I got to do 50 calls a day. Okay, well you call it bowling alley 49 times. And it shows up on other things. So activity, not so much, but how is it translating to pipeline? And back from there, the appointments that they're setting and really doing everything you can to support them, to be able to hit that pipeline and closed revenue number with all the different enablement that you're doing and the playbook and stuff like that. And really laying out a very like low expectation at the beginning because it takes, I mean, and this is where a lot of people go wrong is it takes two, three months for somebody to just to kind of find their footing in this and then create a quota of appointments and pipeline created and maybe give them a kicker on closed one deals. Like if that's something that you can do and really focus on that appointments and pipeline and how it's converting to sales. That makes sense.  
Speaker 1    00:33:27    I'm curious because, you know, we talked about kind of these KPIs, David, this is a role that a lot of people think is evolving or, you know, people have said, Hey, is the SDR going away then there's these BDRs. And is there kind of a meld merge or Hey, SDR will a lot different in two years, three years, four years. What do you think the SDR will look like in four or five years? Will it be just all about appointments? What is that going to look like in your opinion? You've been doing this a long time.  
Speaker 2    00:33:53    No, I was just going to say, they're going to look a lot older bags under their eyes, gray hair.  
Speaker 1    00:33:59    So they've got  
Speaker 2    00:34:00    To look like I just joking around. No, I think that companies, when I get that question, I just say, companies need that three to four X pipeline to feel confident about going into the quarter and going into the end of the year and going into the board and, and explaining what they're going to do for the next two or three quarters. So there's never going to be a time when they're like, you know what? We don't need pipeline. We'll just have the salespeople sit there, wait around. So will it be SDRs and BDRs and stuff like that. It's hard to know with the technology, but there's always going to be that need for pipeline. And the other quick thing is wherever a business can remove the human component they're going to, because humans cost a lot and they're OCI and gushy and they've got emotions, you know, they don't show up to work on time and all that stuff where machines never do that. You just ones and zeros. And so wherever, there's a way to get rid of some of the human element and put it into our technology solution, they're going to figure out a way to do that. And that's something that's happening in the SDR world, especially with making lists and prioritizing and looking for signals on the web and stuff like that. Like SDRs don't do that as much anymore if they have one of the technology solutions, for example. Right.  
Speaker 1    00:35:23    So I, you know, I told you, I wanted to circle back to this question because I've been faced with this and we've gone not to internal, but external, like in your opinion, like is going third-party versus building an internal, what's kind of the chicken and the egg kind of deal. What's your view on that? Do you believe third-party just doesn't make sense or it could make, like, how do you view that scenario?  
Speaker 2    00:35:45    It does make sense a lot of the times, especially when you don't have a lot of time to focus on the training and the enablement of the internal team and you just need meetings and you just say pipeline, I don't want to deal with SDR, but the best in class companies, right from the beginning have both at the same time. So as a small company, they may have one scrappy, gritty entrepreneurial SDR, and then they're booking with two or three agencies and having them also do SDR work. And so then they can kind of play off of each other and see who's doing a better job. And for example, if you go this route, always make sure that the outsource agency is sharing their playbook and their research and their feedback that they're getting from your ideal market. And you're using that to create your internal SDR playbook and run them both at the same time. And I've literally seen a company where they were running both from the time that they had two internal SDRs and a couple of outsource agencies to now where they've got probably 200 plus SDRs and they work with several outsource agencies at the same time. That's one example. Wow.  
Speaker 1    00:37:00    No, that's fantastic. Yeah. I think it's one of those types of things. Yeah. I always fall on, Hey, they'll never know your business, like you'll know your business. So are you losing something on that side? But I think to your point, that's kind of why kind of having a dual sword of having someone internal as well as someone external and kind of a AB test, if you will learn and iterate best practices across the boat.  
Speaker 2    00:37:23    Yeah. Big time. And our tagline kind of at 10 bound is it's about your sales and talent pipeline. So, and we don't do any recruiting, but the SDR team, they could be the next generation of your sales director or your marketing director, or the person running customer success. And getting back to the hiring process, if you can find a great diamond in the rough and they become a key part of your company that, Hey, that's great for everybody. And so that's a benefit of having an SDR program internally.  
Speaker 1    00:37:56    That's fantastic. So final thoughts on this, because I know David, we said five, but I'm sure there was one or two outliers that you had that you're like, oh, I should add it to it. Any last nuggets, maybe number six or seven that you would leave the audience with as well. That just didn't make the cut if you will. Well,  
Speaker 2    00:38:14    I mean, first of all, especially working from home, like it really doesn't have to be like a cookie cutter SDR team of, we want square jaw, young student athletes, you know, who were like wearing Patagonia jackets, no offense, but you know, that stereotype of like the SDR, I mean, it could be anybody now. And one thing that I would just really recommend, if you can, to look for demonstrated sales experience on the resume, where even if they've been selling Cutco knives or girl scout cookies or whatever the product is, did they make president's club? Did they win an award where they're promoted? Like if you see that on the resume, uh, really dig into that because that means that they know what they're going to be doing when they join your team versus somebody who just is like, I just want to get a foot in the door at your company and I've never sold anything. And I don't even know if I like sales, which is a lot of SDR candidates. So a wider net and, uh, look for experience in sales.  
Speaker 1    00:39:26    Fantastic. So how do people connect with you, Dave? I know you're all over LinkedIn. We're going to put these in the show notes and everything for the audience. How do people connect with you learn more about you learn more about 10 pounds on what you guys are doing over there. Tell us a little bit about that.  
Speaker 2    00:39:39    That'd be great. Yeah. I'm definitely connect with me on LinkedIn. I connected everybody and 10 bound is T E N B O U N d.com and there's a ton of free resources and ways to get involved. So,  
Speaker 1    00:39:53    Yeah. Fantastic. Hey, well, David sincerely appreciate your time. Uh, it was an absolute pleasure having you on,  
Speaker 2    00:40:00    Hey, thank you. I hope it was helpful. Take care.  
Speaker 0    00:40:05    Thank you for listening to the sales samurai podcast with your host, Sam Capra. Be sure you subscribe to our podcast and visit sales samurais.io and join the conversation. Access show notes and discover bonus content. 

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David Dulany

Founder & CEO

David Dulany is Founder and CEO of Tenbound, a research and advisory firm focused and dedicated to Sales Development. Tenbound has become the hub of the Sales Development industry, with a thriving online research center, market map, tool directory, training and consulting programs and The Tenbound Sales Development Conferences held yearly around the world and virtually. He recently published his first book, The Sales Development Framework, now available on Amazon.com.