The War Room

How Long is Too Long as an SDR?

I read in another thread on here the other day that 1 year is too long as an SDR.

Is that true?

I have been an SDR at my company for a little over a year now -- granted I technically "moved up positions" twice since I started (aka more work) but now they have me doing a duel isdr/osdr role now & I also have been closing SMB deals myself since last July.

I have also been doing account management, upsells, and retention calls to help out but they're finally filling that role now with a new hire. (start-ups, amiright?)

I honestly feel like I have enough experience closing deals to just go out into the market as an AE somewhere else, but I am honestly worried about the massive layoffs in the tech industry. My job is cushy & the benefits are nice. There's flexible time off and we mostly WFH.

I know there is "no growth" in your comfort zone, but am pretty much like an expert on the product so that is always kind of nice & I walked in with a 3-year plan to master SaaS after switching industries, but I am starting to feel like plans change lol.

Am I wild for staying and not just taking the blind leap?

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Sales Development Manager
I might be biased in saying this being an SDR Manager, but I'd say it anyway:

As long as it takes you to hit your pipeline numbers consistently for at least 2 quarter in a row.
Sales, Operations, and Account Management
There's a backstory here... but I did hit & surpass my quota every month for a little over a year -- basically up until they had me juggling the 4 diff positions (inbound/outbound/smb ae/ account management). I was salty a few months ago because my manager promoted another SDR to AE even though he did NOT hit his quota almost any month -- bizarre.ย 

The manager said it was because the other guy had outbound experience, but realistically I had already been closing deals and came from territory sales which is pretty much as outbound as you can get. He put me in a duel role in AM to "get more closing experience" which was wild & the other promotion was clearly favoritism.ย 

The best part is the SDR who was promoted to AE took his salary and position and left 1 month after the promotion & then my old manager left the company & I have a new manager now as of ~ 2 months ago.ย 

I like him and he is trying to make things work, but he changed the commission structure which in theory should make us more commission 6 months from now, but in the meantime, my OTE is going to suffer because they still have me stretched pretty thin.ย 

For me it all comes down to money, and I think I should be making more AND I am pretty sure they're bringing on a new AE that was laid off from a competitor, but I think it should be me. I think I answered my question here lol I am fixing up my rezzy and exploring my options.ย 
Good Citizen
BDR (Business Development Rep)
Itโ€™s all about what you wanna achieve, if your focus is on something outside of work and the paycheck funds your passion. Itโ€™s as long as youโ€™re happy with your budget.

If you find you need more money than youโ€™re able to acquire in an SDR position, work towards promotion and pause your passion for a year then re visit it with a fresh outlook and a more aggressive investment financially into your passion to counter lost time or time with no completed work in that area of your life.

If you donโ€™t have anything that you are passionately interested in or a Hobby you see a future for yourself in. Then focus on friends and family and health then run the numbers and see what the ballpark retirement age would be if you stayed in the current role till then. Honestly ask yourself if you have it in you to put the time in.

I would say you might find sdr manager a fulfilling role if you hate the pressure of quotas but have a keen eye for coaching to skills and behavior your colleagues could use to find success.

Iโ€™m no counselor or coach. Just some kid with a headset and a pipeline, but donโ€™t let a paycheck control your the best years of your life.

Sales, Operations, and Account Management
I don't really care to manage anyone else... I just want to worry about myself and make a shit ton of moneyย 
Account Executive
I think it all depends on the company. Like if itโ€™s a shit job and itโ€™s a total grind and youโ€™ve proven yourself month after month for a year or so, def time for a promotion or move to something new. If you like the people and the company and the product, stick it out for a bit, put a couple feelers out there just in case but maybe talk to your boss and lay it out there like hey Iโ€™ve been doing all this and love it and want to grow and do more of it. Can we talk about career development opportunities for me? I want to become an AE. How do we make that happen? And see what they say!ย 
Sales, Operations, and Account Management
the comment above breaks it down more clearly. I am burnt out from being stretched so thin & juggling multiple positions for the company. I have also been the top-performing SDR in spite of the workload I have faced. I think there has only been 1 month where I was just under quota, but that was in the midst of doing isdr/osdr/ae/am all in one. They definitely love me for that, but I truly feel like F U pay me. I'm going to explore my options.
Senior Account Executive
I think 2 years max if you have a complex product/industry. If its more of a mindless smile and dial with a script down a list of leads, Id change it to 1 year. Beyond that, I think it stifles personal and professional development.
Enterprise Account Executive
i would never blame someone to keep a job they feel same in especially now.ย 


You 100% have enough experience to be an AE....even at your own company!ย 

Have you asked about that? could you bounce to a competitor since you know the industry/product so well?
Sales, Operations, and Account Management
Thanks, I agree!!ย  My new supervisor really likes me. He made me team lead and has assured me that I am next up for AE so I know it is on my career path, I am just tired of waiting.ย 

It's not his fault that my old boss slept on me to promote someone less experienced in general because they had a bromance, to that he did me a disservice with a fake promotion with the duel role.ย 

Part of my uncertainty has been wanting to give the new leader a chance because he does seem really experienced, and he recognizes my talent and skill but that doesn't change that I have been jerked around for months & don't care to wait another 6 months - year.ย 

The competition would be an easy jump because I have really strong industry knowledge, but I'm pretty sure that I signed a non-compete. Also, my industry is super niche, and my current product is better and consistently outperforms the competition so I am not sure that would be the best move for me regardless.ย 

What it comes down to is that I need to fix up my resume and get a few offers to weigh my options. There are only best cases from there -- I either get a closing role at a new job or use the offer against my current job to get paid more (& maybe even get promoted faster -- who knows)

Either way, it's worth a shot and I would be doing myself a disservice by not seeing what else is out there for me.
Big Shot
Dialing for Initiative
I'm gonna say in general that 2 years is too long, unless you just really like being an SDR. Also depends on the type of product and industry - depending on how complex a solution and sales process.
Head of Sales
Not sure how long is too long, but it definitely seems like you're well suited to close.ย 
As long as it takes for you to show numbers, resilience, and commitment to move to other areas?

If anyone answers a number, THEY ARE LIES, there are different paths, and not one is the same, so do what you can and control what you can, and show up when the opportunity shows itself
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