Please meet VentureSCALE Entrepreneur in Residence, Mike Cashman. Mike is at Principal at Messina Group.
VentureSCALE: Give us a brief overview of your background working with tech companies:
Mike: I've spent the last ten years implementing technologies to help sales teams sell more. My domain of expertise is CRM, Service Applications, and Analytics. For the last 3 years I have been building my own sales and delivery teams, since establishing the Salesforce Consulting Practice at Messina Group.
VentureSCALE: What's your biggest accomplishment as it pertains to scaling an organization?
Mike: At Messina Group, we took a staffing organization and, in a short period of time, layered on a consulting organization with an international customer base that includes smaller, rapidly growing start-ups all the way to widely recognized enterprise organizations.
VentureSCALE: In your opinion, what is the biggest challenge today facing an early stage company in regards to growing revenue, and how would you recommend they overcome it?
Mike: I think a lot of early stage companies, especially with founder CEOs, are so passionate about their product or service that they think it will sell itself. Stepping back, at regular interval, to really consider the what profitable revenue growth looks like and having a plan to achieve that, with best and worst case scenarios considered, seems obvious but is often overlooked.
VentureSCALE: Best sales, SaaS, Tech and/or business related books, authors, articles, podcasts or newsletters?
Mike: Behind the Cloud by Marc Benioff, HBR Ideacast
VentureSCALE: Do you see any interesting future trends as it pertains to growing an early stage tech company?
Mike: Technologies that used to be expensive, inaccessible, and intimidating are becoming accessible to small and enterprise businesses alike. These are solutions that go beyond "nice to have" and can really move the needle. I think augmented intelligence solutions are really interesting in that you can automate a lot of sales planning for reps and let them focus on selling; and a lot of the solutions are being offered as add-ons within the tools they are already using.
VentureSCALE: Best piece of business advice ever received?
Mike: Be paranoid - prepare for everything to go wrong and you eliminate your worst case scenario