At lunch today, Amy said “Welcome to January 112th.”
I just got an email from a friend that included the line, “I’m writing off the first 20 days of the year, so here’s to a much different 2021 starting next week!”
I didn’t really mark the end of the year as the “end of this phase.” The Covid crisis continues. The economic crisis continues. The mental health crisis continues. The racial equity crisis continues. Economic inequity is accelerating at a crazy pace. We just had an armed insurrection in the United States. 4,406 people died of Covid in the US in the last 24 hours.
I’m a long term optimist. But I’m also from Generation X, with the typical Gen-X characteristics of being cynical and disaffected. I embrace my slacker tendencies.
We are experiencing the culmination of many things. Amy and I have been talking about them each morning over coffee. In the midst of this, we are trying to stay centered, calm, and grounded. It’s hard.
Top 10 SaaStr Videos of the Week: Twilio, MongoDB, Blackline, Stripe and More
Catching up on some YouTube over the weekend?
Let’s take a look at the top SaaStr videos other SaaS founders and execs are watching:
#1. “How to Collaborate, Manage & Work with Developers with CEO of Twilio, Jeff Lawson.” Jeff has been doing a lot of speaking to promote his new book, AskYourDeveloper.com, but we did a special take on it, a deep dive on how really to work with a engineering team for the first time. Take a watch!
#2 “Churn is dead. Long live Net Dollar Retention Rate with Dave Kellogg”. A top presentation from SaaStr Scale on how to drive up NRR.
#3. “Fighting Churn with Data with Zuora’s Chief Data Scientist.” Another deep dive on tackling churn.
#4. “Fireside Chat: Jyoti Bansal, harness.io & Dev Ittycheria, MongoDB.” What do two Unicorn+ CEOs talk about when they get together? Find out here!
#5. “Lessons in Scaling a Low Code Platform with Airtable”. Learn how Airtable … got to be Airtable, from CEO Howie Liu.
#6. “Going Long: The 20-year Journey of Being a CEO + Founder with BlackLine”. Another incredible session with Therese Tucker, on how to build a $7B+ industry winner, the hard way in many ways.
#7. “10 Rules for Defining Churn with ForgeRock and Solarwinds | SaaStr Software Community”. Another deep dive on churn, this one with 10 great actionable steps to drive it down.
#8. “Dharmesh Shah of HubSpot – From Day 0 to IPO: What Went to Plan, What Most Certainly Didn’t.” A SaaStr classic on some of Hubspot’s top mistakes (and wisest choices) getting to IPO.
#9. “Avoid Trapdoor Decisions: 5 Lessons Learned from Scaling Stripe with COO Claire Hughes Johnson”. Another SaaStr Classic and a must watch on not making the wrong key decisions.
#10. “How Sales and Product Really Should Work Together with MongoDB”. This is a critical topic and come learn how the heads of sales and product really worth together at Mongo.
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Yes, You Do Have To Pay Sales Commissions When a Partner Mostly Closes The Deal
Q: Should we deduct partner referral fees from our sales people’s commission?
This is an important question and the answer is generally No.
At first, this will confuse you as a founder. If I have to pay a partner say 20% of a deal, and they do a lot of the work — why do I also have to pay my own sales rep a full commission?
Because what we all find is that, at least for a long time, if you don’t provide a commission to everyone working the deal, there is (x) too much conflict and (y) more importantly, no one is motivated enough to help the other if they don’t get a full commission.
So yes, at least for a while, with many partners you may in essence need to pay a double commission. One to the partner, and one to your own sales team. It’s OK if it gets the deal done. Especially, if the customer stays for years and years.
Later, you may develop a team that manages your channel. Once you do, if the revenue from a channel is large enough, you can often pay lower commissions that you do for your direct sales team. E.g., perhaps a channel manager can own a $2m quota, vs. $500k for an AE. But even there, it’s two commissions.
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It took until 2000 for all the states to recognize a day to observe and remember MLK. Reagan signed MLK Day into law in 1983. The difference of 17 years for all to recognize the day speaks to itself.
King’s activism for Civil Rights created a foundation for any of us to bring people together for non-violent movements. The power of seeing people from all walks of life get together to march against one right, although subtle, speaks volumes. Black Lives Matters, Women’s Rights, Anti-Guns, etc. Not just in the US but globally, the surge of non-violent protests from public fury packs a powerful punch seeking change and transformation.
If only the people who have attempted to overthrow our Government on January 6th came to Washington to march in peace. To show their frustration instead of rioting the capital with guns, knives, and ropes with the desire to create havoc and spread hate.
As an eternal optimist, I believe we have got to a place in our country where we are finally coming to a reckoning with our history, especially our dirty history. It took Covid and Trump to get us there, but there are always silver linings.
Joe Biden has put together his top team of 25 people with a myriad of faces, and 12 of them are women, and his VP is a Black Indian woman. This is game-changing.
I want to believe that finally, MLK would be happy in the direction we are finally heading.
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