a.k.a. Considering joining the Sales Engineering team (at Vercel)?
The high-growth aspect of an organisation such as Vercel invariably means that we will need to do accelerated team growth at some point - which brings a variety of new challenges which are crucial to the ability to scale the business effectively.
This is a two way process, and it took me many years before I truly realised this. Both parties are making investments, and both parties need to be transparent about the RoI they hope to achieve. Once someone has joined the team, all our satisfactions are the delta between outcome and expectations.
There is a specific aspect to being in high-tech high-growth to bear in mind. You will almost definitely need to be a strong independent learner - whatever you were taught in school or university, the ability to learn and develop yourself outside of guided tuition and teaching is pretty important. The web industry is one of the fastest moving domains in human history - in many cases, especially at the cutting edge web development there is an exceedingly small number of people that could help you, and the manual almost definitely hasn't been written yet. However, this does bring a wonderful opportunity for you to help others, and to be the source of knowledge that others are searching for. (The light at the end of the tunnel, may be you)
Potential candidates typically come into the process in one of 3 ways. Warm referrals, active job-seekers, through being approached by our TA team (or someone working on their behalf)
For warm referrals, and those approached by our scouts, I am more than happy to pitch Vercel - it's an amazing place to work.
Active job seekers - are you looking for a job at Vercel, or any job will do?
Better to be transparent - What I'm looking for:
- on time (or appropriate comminations if something exceptional has happened)
- what do you know about Vercel?
- Have you read our recent blogs/announcements/product updates?
- what do you know about me ? (I share a lot about myself - just follow the breadcrumb trail)
- what do you know about Vercel?
- can you instigate a conversation
- how natural does us talking feel
- how familiar with next.js are you?
- how effectively can you learn - both independently, and collaboratively.
- based on relevant prior experience
- confidence that you are inquisitive and somewhat driven to learn independently (we are in a very fast paced industry, you need to be willing and interested in keeping up)
Sales Experience / Market awareness:
- can you talk about standard Sales qualification processes
- can you talk about who our competitors might be?
- can you talk about who our partners might be?
What will you bring to the team? Technical skills, business experience, relationship.
Next steps: Unless you can already point me at meaningful relevant technical work, either side-projects or a demo you have created for this process - then there will probably be a technical challenge.
Bonus: If you are reading this because you are doing some research as part of the interview process - then wonderful, and please find ways to reference it if or when we talk.
I've been fortunate enough to be a part of a handful of high-growth high-tech startups and ventures. Different phases bring different needs, and adaptability is usually key.
We are also actively looking to form a more cognitively diverse team (a separate post on this here)