Hunters + Unicorns: The 33 CxOs – Bill Strogis 008
“My mission is not to build a fiefdom. I’m not trying to build the biggest company possible. I’m trying to build a successful company. I’m trying to build a go-to-market team that will scale smartly, will get the channel up and running, will do all the right things and I want this to be my exit, my swan song, my lasting legacy. ” – Bill Strogis
Hunters and Unicorns shares the playbooks from leaders, founders, executives and investors from high growth technology companies. In this special edition series The 33 CXOs we investigate the greatest success story in the history of software sales. Discover how thirty-three sales execs from one organisation, BladeLogic, became CXOs in the world’s 100 fastest growing technology companies. We uncover the stories and playbooks of the most prolific sales leaders in the industry. Episode 3 features Bill Strogis, CRO of HyperScience. With over 25 years of experience, Bill has spent the majority of his career building and leading enterprise sales teams for early stage companies. He started out as a Solutions Engineer at Matra Datavision, but with a background in mechanical engineering, Bill had the credibility and experience required to quickly transition through the ranks of this notoriously tough sales industry, directing and building hugely successful organisations including unicorns like Okta and more recently Cybereason, where he became SVP of Sales Productivity.
“I want to surround myself with people that are excellent and that force me to be even better – you want to spend time around people that are wired that way. You find yourself wanting to be surrounded by people that, when things get hard, don’t curl up in a ball. Instead, they rub some dirt on it, and they go, “Let’s go figure this out.” And you want to be surrounded by people that have that mentality, because it just fuels you.”
Bill has been surrounded by exceptional people throughout his career. He learnt the rules of the playbook from the best, John McMahon, and he knows how to run it, refine it and break the ceiling of ambitious growth goals. His tendency toward companies who disrupt with their leading-edge technologies and solve problems with real impact can be attributed to his highly competitive nature and strong desire to succeed. However, his leadership approach is collaborative. From his teams, he calls for commitment, not compliance and leads from a position of genuine eagerness to propel the people that work for him and help them to be more successful.
“The people that work for me are afraid of not being successful because they’re driven and they don’t want to disappoint their families, and they don’t want to disappoint themselves. I think they also don’t want to disappoint me, but they don’t fear me in that way. Fear isn’t the motivator. I think fear of failure is a motivator for them, and I think that I do a really good job in making sure the people who work for me know that I genuinely care. I give a shit.”
In this vodcast you will discover: MEDDIC – what it is, how to use it and why it is so important The common traits of CXOs and highly successful salespeople An insight into the early stages of this tough industry and what the future looks like for the next generation The key characteristics that are being recruited for in this industry Bill has come a very long way since his time at BMC, but that ‘go kick everybody’s ass’ vibe that he observed and adopted there has served him well. Motivated by opportunities to build something the way that it should be built, Bill has spent his career blazing new paths for enterprise software and has seen huge success. He knows how to survive and thrive in this industry and shares his advice with us as we discuss his approach to building sales teams and what is needed for a company to reach unicorn status. An insight into the past, present and future of this industry, this discussion is essential listening for those with an interest in sales strategy, as well as anyone with a passion for the technology space.