When First Round invests in a startup, one of the first requests we get from founders is for prospective customer introductions. Founders need lots of “at bats” to hone in on their pitch, sales process and pricing, but it’s challenging when they’re early in the market and are relatively unknown. Selling is a numbers game, and founders often don’t have the bandwidth (or the skills) to do cold outreach and tee up all of the sales opportunities they need to learn quickly and hit their revenue targets.
As the front-line representative of a startup, Sales Development Reps have the ability to make a massive impact on the business for years to come. Given the potential to leave such a large footprint on a startup’s foundation, plenty of folks hope to make a career pivot into tech sales. But despite the massive need across the startup ecosystem for more SDRs, it’s tricky to get your foot in the door with no experience. While we’ve found that some of the best SDRs come from non-traditional backgrounds, busy founders and hiring managers often don’t feel they have the time to teach on-the-job skills — like the secrets of creating effective messaging, executing a successful cold call or performing impactful discovery.
There are a number of SDR “incubators” out there, but most of them are too expensive for startups to recruit from. They also focus on quantity over quality, with a generic curriculum that tees up SDRs for more mature organizations. Founders need their first SDRs to come in and build the foundational sales development effort, with little hand-holding. We think we can help close this gap, and that’s why we’re launching Sales Development Track — to teach you the foundations of sales development and send you down a new career path in one of the best foundational roles at a startup.
Whatever your background, we believe that detail-oriented, organized operators who are incredible communicators make the sharpest SDRs, and we’re excited to help you make a career transition. If this sounds like you, apply here.
SDR Track is an exclusive free program to help folks transition into an SDR role at an early-stage startup. The inaugural track will include 7 sessions November 1st - November 18th where we’ll cover the foundations of Sales Development with hands-on practice. Sessions will be taught by First Round’s very own VP of GTM, Emery Rosansky, with guest instructors from top tech startups like Notion, Stripe and Greenhouse.
In building out the curriculum, we took a magnifying glass to each step of the sales development process. We’ll cover the fundamentals of sales development, from defining your ideal customer profile and buyer personas to crafting effective outreach messaging, doing customer discovery the right way, and setting up your sales development technology stack. But this won’t just be a series of presentations — you’ll get tons of opportunities to practice and mimic on-the-job experience, with our team on hand to give feedback and answer all your questions.