Listen: Alexa Grabell on the Not Boring Podcast (pt. 2)

An expansive conversation with Packy McCormick on the fundraise, hiring, and the future of PLS.

Packy McCormick
June 28, 2022
Listen: Alexa Grabell on the Not Boring Podcast (pt. 2)

Our CEO & Co-Founder Alexa Grabell recently sat down for a second time with Packy McCormick, for the Not Boring Podcast series "Not Boring Founders". This time around the conversation spanned a number of topics, starting with what's changed since the last they spoke (hint: a lot), to how Alexa is approaching the market downturn, and then ending with some tactical advice on recruiting your early team as a founder.

If you don’t know Packy, you probably don’t spend enough time on the internet. He’s built an impressive 55,000+ strong community for Not Boring, a podcast and twice-weekly newsletter that is the most fun way to learn about what’s going on in business and the strategy behind the decisions companies make.

Want to start at the beginning? Listen to Alexa's first appearance on the show here.

Listen to the episode (~34 mins)

2:22 What does the world look like in 10 years if Pocus executes on the vision?

4:40 What are people doing today to hack together a solution for Product-Led Sales?

6:22 What are the key differences between what sales teams need and more technical product /data teams?

8:12 The myth of the single magical aha moment

10:40 PLG vs. Product-Led Sales

16:12 Funding news!

21:00 Building out the GTM function at Pocus

22:00 What are you scared about?

23:00 How to hire the right early team

31:00 How to grow your community with intention

Favorite Quotes from the Episode

On Pocus' 10 year vision

What we've recognized is that there's a huge movement with the modern data stack and data warehouses and all these great tools for data teams and engineers to tap into product usage data and use it to inform their own strategies. But what we've seen on the go to market side is it's really hard for sales teams to get access to all of that rich product usage data. So the longer term vision is  every single non technical team so sales, marketing, customer success, growth, Ops, at every type of SaaS company can realize the power of data. We are unlocking that future through our flexible and no code platform that allows every single person in every single type of company get access to the data warehouse.

On PLG teams that misunderstand the aha moment

So there's the conventional wisdom that everyone should know their aha moment and then you run your whole business around it and poof magic. I think it started with slack when they said, 2000 messages. That is our aha moment. That is our PQL, nothing else mattered. That is great. That is a great v1 for an aha moment. But, you cannot run your business around that. It is experimental. So there's going to be an aha moment from going from self serve free users to when they pay. There's gonna be another aha moment from going to the team plan to the enterprise plan. There's going to be another aha moment when there's a cross sell opportunity or an upsell opportunity or expansion. Some call these aha moments, other triggers, signals or PQLs. Whatever it is called - it's not a single metric and it will always be an ongoing experiment.

On drinking our own champagne (or eating our own dogfood 😂)

There will always be more folks hired on the engineering side, which gets to our product-led mentality and then having some key hires on the go to market side to make sure that we're able to give our community and customers the best experience. So you won't see me hiring a team of 15 SDRs [soon] that's just not in our future. We're never going to be a team that just goes out cold calling and outbounding aggressively.

On hiring the early team

I think two most important things for any interview is some sort of take home challenge and references. You can do as many interviews as you want, which is more about cultural fit. Are you excited to work with them? If you can come up with a challenge or working session that's what they would be doing - I find that more informative.

On what we're excited for at Pocus

So I think about this as team, customers, product, and community. So the team we're hiring stellar people and we're scaling both our culture and capabilities. In terms of customers. I'm excited about  building with them. The right product features that are going to make them excel and go beyond just a sales use case. So we've had a lot of customers that are Account Managers and Customer Success folks who are really diving into new use cases .So i'm thinking about how can we enable them better and build new solutions for them? [instead of them hacking together solutions] There's a lot of other interesting things on our product roadmap regarding intelligence so having more machine learning, predictive models for scoring and actions, as well as reporting for leadership. Then last thing is community. We are leaning on these evangelists that have joined our community to drive the future of profitable sales and drive the future of the modern go to market team. So we need to continue to nurture that.

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Packy McCormick
Founder, Not Boring
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