The War Room

SaaS Tech Start-up

About to sign on as an AE with a 2yo tech startup. Any red flags I should look out for with working at a start-up?
🀘 Personal Growth
πŸ“³ SaaS
WR Lieutenant
Bean Juice Drinker | Sales Savant
Why are you asking about red flags if you are joining the company? Should have sussed those out during the interview process.

Here's what to look for on day one: did they prepare an onboarding plan for you, and if so, is it ran by your boss or someone unrelated to your day-to-day functions (that isn't titled as the trainer/enablement person). If it's the latter then it better be because your VP/Director/CEO is too busy closing business or raising funds to help you get on the ground running. Any other reason is sus as fuck.
Rolling for Initiative
WR Officer
Senior Account Executive
Could you be more specific?
SaaS Eater
This is a really broad questions because there can be a million things to look out for. What exactly would you like advice on?Β 
Account Executive
Wow! I totally wasn’t even expecting to get responses! Thanks everyone! I really love the company, the people, the pay. Everything feels and looks perfect. I work at a large company now with over 4,000 employees (600+ sales reps), over 30,000 clients and this company is like 20 employees and like 25 clients so far. Just wanted to make sure I’m not missing any big questions to ask before I sign on the line. I know it’ll be totally diff and chaotic and comp plan will change, goals will change - I’m fine with that! I guess I was just looking for validation that it’s worth the risk for better pay and a chance to work at a fun startup…or if there are any horror stories out there that might make me want to ask some additional questions!
Sales Executive
I jumped from a large company to a much smaller one this year.Β  Β While not a start up, it's definitely not on the same maturity curve as my previous spot.Β Β 

Knowing what I know now regarding challenges, I'd still jump, but just know that you won't have the level of support you're probably used to.Β  Prospective customers won't reflexively know who you are, so you're going to be doing a fair amount of education.Β  You won't have the customer references, datasheets, marketing, partner network, etc., that you're used to, and haven't realized how much you use them.Β  You'll be creating your own slides, because the very one you need has not been made yet.Β  Β  You'll have to work harder at navigating the company ecosystem because they're probably all doing multiple things too, and don't have all the answers right at hand.Β Β 

But to that point, regarding getting started - poweredbycaffeine is absolutely correct.Β  Do they have an onboarding plan?Β  Do you have support?Β  Β How are they handling those first days/weeks/months with you and your ramp up?
Account Executive
This is so helpful! Thank you so much for sharing!!
You will see both good and bad in the start-up world. Those are some basic questions you got to ask (mentioned by PCB). The only addition I would make here is - try to read some reviews, company news etc. Also, if possible and if haven't done yet, ask them to set up a call with your to-be colleagues for a quick coffee chat, you might find it very helpful.
Director of Business Development
Product-market fit is HUGE. Do you believe in the product? Is there a clear differentiator of your product/service? How robust will marketing efforts be? Brand awareness will be your downfall, or your savior. How broad/narrow will your focus be (you could end up doing 8 different roles when you were technically hired for only 1). otherwise, startups are where it's at. you can do anything you want with your company and be agile/flexible to bring on customers fast.
Account Executive
Who is hitting quota... I joined a startup as an AE and was told most of the reps were hitting but NO ONE WAS AT ALL. But I didn't know until I was on board
Head Of Sales
Agree with others in here. It’s an extremely broad question. Id you want the most qualifying answer, then you need to be more specific.Β 
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