Day in the Life of a Sales VP
Tune into this 3-part series covering different sales roles for easy tidbits of inspiration and best practices to take with you into 2022.
John Sherer | VP of Sales @ Lattice | San Francisco-based
John has worked in sales for over a decade. He cut his teeth early as an account executive for HubSpot. From there, he was the first hire at startup Appcues and grew revenue from zero to $8 million in five years. John also stepped into his first VP role.
Now, as VP of Sales at Lattice, a company that has doubled headcount from 250 to 500 employees in the last year, John sits on the leadership team. He leads three critical functions – sales development, commercial sales, and corporate sales.
Here's how one recent Tuesday went for John:
Nico and Dash
I have two cats, and as many cat owners know, they make the rules. My day starts with feeding the boys, Nico and Dash. Then I have a cup of coffee while I write a quick daily update to the sales team in Slack which we pin to our deal alerts channel. Every morning we post new ARR (annual recurring revenue) in the month, percent-to-goal, late-stage pipeline, BDR (business development rep) meetings in the month, percent-to-BDR goal, remaining meetings in the month, then a few words of hype.
After I post, I list everything I'm committed to accomplishing that day – personal and professional – on an easel. Then I step outside for a walk. I live in NOPA in San Francisco, so I typically walk from one end of the panhandle to the other and, if I'm feeling it, venture into Golden Gate Park. I usually listen to music while I walk.
Lately, I've been loving the Mellow Classics playlist on Spotify. Once I start working, I can get tense, so some laid-back music and nature support me in being a more thoughtful leader.
Once I'm home, I think about getting on the Peleton. Sometimes I do. You can find me as #johnnytargaryen, mostly doing Alex Toussaint rides.
My calendar leaves Tuesday mornings as space for deep work. I'm successful half the time in making this happen. Right now, I'm working with a few others on redesigning our hiring competencies and interview process.
A Coach's Coach
Every other week, I spend an hour on Tuesdays with a business coach provided by Lattice. We focus on people leadership. Tim, my coach, once told me that "all good executives are good at strategy, great executives are great people leaders." That's stuck with me and guides the majority of my growth as a leader.
I have a quick and light lunch. Cooking is one of those things I'm not into right now. My goal is to eat food that's easy to prepare and doesn't make me tired. I pair lunch with a cup of coffee.
After lunch, I have my weekly therapy session. It's the most critical hour of my week. I started three years ago when I got sober, supporting me immensely. I'm proud of my journey over the last few years, and my home base for growth is this hour.
After therapy, I catch up on Slack and emails. We move fast as a leadership team and are highly collaborative. I practice inbox zero, which motivates me to move things along.
I reserve the last few hours of the day for interviews. This is the case four days a week. We're growing fast and hiring in every role. Interviewing is typically my top activity in terms of time spent every week.
Close the Laptop
After my interview block, I typically work through Slack and email, prep Wednesday's calendar, shift some stuff around, close the laptop, and head out for a walk.
Dinner and Read
Usually, I'll game plan dinner on a walk. I LOVE eating dinner alone at a bar with a book or audible book. I live by Alamo Square Park, and there's so much good food there. (I'm a regular at Horsefeather and Bean Bag Cafe.)
I read fiction – mostly sci-fi and fantasy – and choose a few at one time. Hyperion by Dan Simmons is a book I'm reading again, and Nightfall and Other Stories by Issac Assimov is a solid page-turner.
After dinner, I'll go home and hang on the couch. If there's a good NBA game, I'll watch that (Go Celts!). Otherwise, I'll pick out a record and listen to music. I've been having fun building a pretty solid vinyl collection. I believe Fionna Apple is on the record table at the moment.