Hiring the inaugural go-to-market (GTM) team will set the tone for your brand’s trajectory involves a strategic blend of vision, expertise, and cultural alignment. We've complied the ultimate set of resources, already used by dozens of founders, to help with your hiring and retainment journey.
Let's dive in!
The right time to hire a GTM team
The timing for hiring a GTM team can vary based on the nature of the business, product maturity, market conditions, and available resources. In the early stages, founders often handle initial marketing and sales to understand customer needs better — once there's validation and traction with the product, it might be time to start building a dedicated GTM team. On the other hand, if a founder lacks expertise in marketing, sales, or other GTM functions, hiring specialized individuals becomes a priority.
As part of Stage 2 Capital's GTM System, we encourage founders to begin hiring their GTM teams once they have developed a GTM Playbook. This tool gives your future team a plan for success, while allowing you to iterate faster by seeing what’s working and where you need to improve.
Resources to hire and retain GTM talent
Hiring the first sales leader is a make-or-break decision for a startup and the founding team. Get the hire right and you will likely accelerate your revenue growth for the next few years. Get it wrong and it may sink you — Get your Hiring the First Sales Leader Guide HERE and leverage this article while using it.
For each GTM function, we suggest using interview scorecards to uncover the hidden talents and strengths within your candidate pool:
- For your initial sales reps, examine a candidate's sales acumen, interpersonal skills, and adaptability — Get your Interview Scorecard for Sales Hires HERE
- For the first sales leader, evaluate a candidate's leadership acumen, sales strategy expertise, and team-building skills, to spearhead and elevate the sales trajectory — Get your Interview Scorecard for Sales Leaders HERE
- For an inaugural marketer, consider a candidate's creative prowess, strategic thinking, and digital savviness — Get your Interview Scorecard for Marketing HERE
- For the founding customer success hire, assess problem-solving ability and communication skills to drive exceptional customer satisfaction — Get your Interview Scorecard for Customer Success HERE
- For someone that can do it all, you'll look for a versatile skill set, encompassing market strategy, cross-functional collaboration, and adaptability to drive overall go-to-market success — Get your Interview Scorecard for the First GTM Hire HERE
You can view all of Stage 2 Capital's tools and templates to hire and retain talent in our Resource Center. If there's a new resource you'd like us to add, drop your ideas in the comments below!