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SDR Career Path | Inbound to Outbound or Outbound to Inbound?

I have heard of two general models to create a career path for SDRs;


  1. Have new SDRs start in an inbound role (white paper, webinar) to cut their teeth to then move into either a true inbound role (hand raisers) or to outbound role targeting cold prospects and larger accounts.
  2. Have new SDRs start in an outbound cold calling environment and move them to warmer leads as they improve. Usually with an option to go to a strategic ENT role as the highest level.


Starting SDRs cold calling when they are trying to learn your product and often times how to just be comfortable on the phone can be an uphill battle, in my opinion. 80% of the SDR job seems to be between the ears and if you can get early wins, with inbound leads, the SDRs get their first taste of blood and the rest is history.


Thoughts, comments, concerns with either? Go!




๐Ÿ“ž Cold Calling
๐Ÿ‘ฅ Hiring
๐Ÿ’†โ€โ™‚ Mindset
7
AlecBaldwinsHairline
Valued Contributor
+5
SDR Manager
If you've never done sales or cold calling - start with SDR (inbound).

If you are looking for something to go up from there move to BDR (outbound)
sadness2
Inside Sales Manager
I agree. Do you have any reasons in particular you would do this?ย 
AlecBaldwinsHairline
Valued Contributor
+5
SDR Manager
Because cold calling people to spur interest and drive urgency outside of a buying cycle typically takes more skill.


Learn that skill as an SDR on how to have a sales conversation and become naturally curious.ย  Then expand your horizon.
poweredbycaffeine
WR Officer
+9
Bean Juice Drinker | Sales Savant
SDRs should, if possible, start on the Inbound channel to build a photographic memory of questions, objections, and rebuttals that come from a warm user base before throwing them into the cold deepened that is outbound. At this stage, they are likely moving up the ladder to BDR, which is in support of a larger outbound organization. By then they've started to pick up on patterns of titles, company sizes, territories, etc, that will make them a bit more armored up when they get a live fish on the line.
sadness2
Inside Sales Manager
What about the argument of "inbound leads are our highest converting and most expensive leads. We don't want to put our new reps on those!"ย 

poweredbycaffeine
WR Officer
+9
Bean Juice Drinker | Sales Savant
I also don't want to put most AEs on inbound leads--they either ignore them or drive them into the ground. Answering a few key questions and booking a meeting are easy mountains to climb for an SDR, and if they get out of their depth they are quick to say "I don't know the answer, but I am sure my colleague can answer that on your call."
the_sonk_master
Opinionated
+5
Sr. SDR
I always like the idea of SDR's handling inbound first as a way to get some wins and confidence under their belt. I've found it can be tough to keep confidence as solely doing outbound when you don't know the product well and all you're hearing is no. Can be nice to have the confidence and peace of mind in knowing the true value that the product brings and understanding that it is something that can really help people
sadness2
Inside Sales Manager
100%.ย 
funcoupons
WR Officer
+11
that's queen coups to u
I think a mix of both is ideal.ย 

Cold calling is an essential activity and skill for every salesperson, so the earlier an SDR can start honing their skills here, the better. If they absolutely cannot cold call, they'll soon find out and the sooner they can move on from that position as well.

I have no problem with throwing a newbie a warm lead or two to build confidence and give them that experience, though.ย 
CaneWolf
Politicker
+12
Call me what you want, just sign the damn contract
I started with both. So did everyone I started with. Gives people balance and it takes some of the pain out of the all day rejection you can experience when doing outbound.
sales7
Politicker
+5
Sales Enablement Manager
Might just be me but I've never heard of a rep move from inbound to outbound... Inbound is usually protected & then also a promotion away from outbound
sadness2
Inside Sales Manager
Thanks so much for replying. Do you know why most people went from outbound to inbound versus the latter?
jwils
Politicker
+9
Sales Manager
Inbound is the easier of the two roles imho. If there's any difference between the two roles, that one should be first.ย 
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