Interview with G2's Henrique Moniz de Aragão
Henrique is the VP of Sales at G2, having previously worked as Senior Regional Vice President at Salesforce.
G2 is disrupting B2B tech, by making the process of buying and selling software more transparent and accessible. G2 shares authentic customer reviews and real-time, algorithmic ratings of business software and related services. At G2, Henrique is responsible for managing a sales team in order to build on client acquisition and new business sales.
As part of our whitepaper case study on how SaaS companies have adapted to remote work, we interviewed a number of experts, below are Henrique's insights:
Adapting Processes For Remote Work
G2 have had to look to introduce to automate some of our processes much earlier than we would have thought we needed to. Similarly, we’ve had to adopt more regimented processes now that the team is fully remote.
We’re moving to a world where we’re contacting our clients more regularly remotely, but the face to face contact will be less frequent. In future, we’ll adapt the process of meeting clients to be more of an event. They will be less frequent, but when they happen there will be more people present and they will cover more ground.
With a lot of work being done remotely, sales leaders need to empower their people to carry out their own startup journey and manage their own progression. It’s not just about sales though, we’re trying to help people with their own personal advancement in every aspect.
The Impact Of Remote Working On Spirit And Culture
Initially, the team was told that we’re pausing hiring and that the new office move isn’t going ahead. In fact, we said that we may not even have an office at all moving forward as remote working was likely going to continue for a while. This was a shock to the sales team, and caused some culture disturbances.
In the past we’ve been able go for lunch with someone, have a quiet chat or let someone know that you’ve got their back in a business setting. With remote working it has been harder to build this kind of trust and solidify team bonds.
With Zoom, Slack, Messaging and the like there is a lot more room for miscommunication. The impact of this has meant that we went from a tight knit team who were very involved in each other's progress, to one that had to really make an effort to keep in touch.
How Sales Leaders Are Improving Remote Culture
It has been crucial to allow people to communicate on different levels and use different platforms to collaborate. We’ve been using channels like Slack, WhatsApp and email all for slightly different purposes to try and recreate the multifaceted layers of face to face communication.
In the past we may have done sales competitions, but now we’re wanting to offer more cross functional competitions. We’re looking to deliver engagement and team building as opposed to competitions purely about sales.
We’ve seen this on LinkedIn especially, but we’re encouraging people to share their experiences of remote work and remote onboarding. We want people to be a lot more open and transparent about their experiences in order to share both internally and externally the business experiences we’ve had recently.
Sales Leader Attitudes Towards The Remote Onboarding Process
Pretty much all VC backed software companies were advised to stop hiring and evaluate what’s going on at the start of COVID. We also had to reduce the workforce and focus on understanding what’s going on.
When hiring, we have had to really hire for values as opposed to just the role they might perform. Hiring for values, not culture or output is one of the most crucial aspects of remote hiring and onboarding.
How Sales Leaders Are Handling Training And Onboarding Challenges
Pre-COVID, new joiners would go to Chicago and meet up with other fresh starters to learn about G2 and get a good feel for the company. This was an amazing experience, but we’ve had to change it so that it’s 100% digital.
Managers have had a lot of hands on involvement, and we’ve allowed 8 weeks for onboarding remotely instead of the 2 that we would normally allow. We’ve made the process a lot more
G2 has been introducing personal plans that are more holistic. We include the standard sales metrics, but that is only one part. We’re trying to measure success in terms of progression, personal development and how well the individual is moving towards their unique goals.
This interview was conducted as part of our whitepaper study on remote work in the SaaS world. Get your free copy here.