Failure as the Path Forward

Steve LudwigPathfinder SalesLeave a Comment

wooden tiles spelling out learn from failure

The best person to be the first sales hire for a B2B tech startup is someone that can deal with failure and rejection.  Repeatedly. They need to learn from each experience, refine the pitch, gather insights, and develop new approaches and potential clients. They have to keep doing this until success hits.  The question for entrepreneurs—and everyone else— when they … Read More

Pour One Out for Failed Startups

Steve LudwigPathfinder SalesLeave a Comment

image of person dressed in traditional mexican attire for the day of the dead

Día de los Muertos, Day of the Dead, is a celebration in Mexico held on November 1 and 2. It is a day when friends and family gather to remember and pay their respects to those that have passed. The celebration was brought into the global pop culture consciousness through the Pixar film Coco.  In the same way, the tradition … Read More

Can you Codify a Person’s Soul?

Steve LudwigPathfinder SalesLeave a Comment

a person with an indication of their soul above them

How do you know a person you are about to hire is who they say they are?  You call in the modern Dr. Frankenstein. These are Ph.Ds in lab coats that peel back the outer layers of ego and self-defense and peer deep inside the nooks and crannies of your gray matter to get to the truth, the unvarnished essence, … Read More

A Very Particular Set of Skills

Steve LudwigPathfinder SalesLeave a Comment

finding a path through the woods

Kicking off the dust of stupid corporate politics and incompetent bosses.  Early retirement. Expensive cocktails. Fabulous vacations.  Having to worry about inheritance taxes and not raising entitled children.  Ah, the daydreams of startup life.  We get it. We’ve been down that road more than once. (And believe me, getting a reliable crew for both the yacht and the private jet … Read More

It’s Not Magic; It’s Research

Steve LudwigPathfinder SalesLeave a Comment

person with wand performing magic

We want magicians.  Our hope when we hire our first salesperson is that they will work magic. It’s not a realistic hope, it’s not even spoken out loud, and we might not even be conscious of it, but we want them to work their sales magic and make it rain money.  It’s no wonder we are so often disappointed.  Through … Read More

The Smell of Money

Steve LudwigPathfinder SalesLeave a Comment

image of different bank notes

Money Makes the World Go Round, as the song goes. But what makes your first sales hire get out of bed? Are they just motivated by the almighty buck or is something else helping drive their ambition?  We all have dreams of being the next startup that gets the unicorn valuation of US$1 billion. To begin any business journey, you … Read More

Build your Startup Brand

Steve LudwigPathfinder SalesLeave a Comment

a laptop with multiple brand logo images

Relationships and reputation are the keys to your startup brand. Outside of the founder and the performance of your product, the biggest impact on both is your first Sales hire.  Outside of the founder, the first Sales hire is the biggest brand evangelist and brand ambassador. They are the first individual your clients will meet and likely be the person … Read More

When Experience Hurts Sales

Steve LudwigPathfinder SalesLeave a Comment

a one way traffic sign

We all want the person with the biggest bat. It’s normal. But that instinct—which is a huge bias—can hurt your efforts in hiring your first salesperson.  We understand the tendency for B2B tech startup founders to look for their first sales hire to have a long resumé, a huge contact list, and swagger. From the outside, that appears to be … Read More

Top 5 Reasons You Will Love Your First Sales Hire

Steve LudwigPathfinder SalesLeave a Comment

image showing "we are hiring"

The top five reasons you will love your first sales hire are:  Money. I mean, that’s why you hired them, right? They will bring in new revenue.   Expansion. They will help expand your company’s reach and help identify new markets.  Thought partner. They will get critical feedback from customers and help think of new ways to serve them.  Builder. They … Read More

Founder Seeks Pathfinder for Mutually Beneficial Relationship

Rob BakerPathfinder SalesLeave a Comment

picture of two jigsaw pieces

B2B tech founders will find they are best served by considering their all-important first Sales hire, The Pathfinder, as a ‘Comrade-in-Arms’ rather than a pure Sales functionary. According to Merriam-Webster, a business centric definition of a ‘comrade-in-arms’ is “a person one worked together with to achieve something”. Those few words perfectly encapsulate how B2B tech founders should shift their mindset to … Read More