The Art and Science of Hiring the Perfect Head of Sales

The Art and Science of Hiring the Perfect Head of Sales

Recruiting: Chief Sales Officer. The art and science of hiring the perfect Sales Manager

Head of Sales (Sales Director) in a SaaS (Software as a Service) world, where technology and business strategies are evolving day by day, his role takes on a new dimension. It is no longer a traditional position focused solely on achieving sales targets. Today's sales chief is a visionary who shapes the future of sales in the organization, innovates and promotes a culture of excellence among his team.

His role is transformational in the sense that he influences not only the sales department, but the entire organization. He works closely with other departments, such as marketing, customer service and the technical department, to ensure consistency in operations and achievement of business goals.

Given my experience as a Head of Sales and Executive Recruiter , this allowed me to understand the importance of finding the right person for the position. Working for many clients, I helped them successfully recruit Sales Directors who not only achieved their sales goals, but on top of that contributed to the overall growth and success of the organization.

In this context, I would like to share my knowledge and experience on what questions are critical during the hiring process for a sales executive. In this guide, I provide not only these critical questions, but also the background and context that will give potential employers a better understanding of what to look for in an ideal candidate.

Recruiting for the position of: Head of Sales is a complex process that requires not only an assessment of the candidate's competence and experience, but also an understanding of the candidate's vision, values and ability to make a difference. I hope this guide will be a valuable resource for anyone looking to hire the best sales chief for their organization.


1. Sales process and strategy

Question: "Describe the sales process you find most effective in the SaaS industry. What are its key steps and how do you adapt it to different customers and market situations?"

Context: The sales process is the core of every sales executive's business. Understanding how a candidate designs, implements and adapts the sales process can provide insight into their strategic and tactical capabilities. Answering this question will help you understand how a candidate approaches the customer lifecycle, from initial contact to closing the deal and follow-up service

2. Estimating the size of the team

Question: "Based on our current trajectory and goals, how big a team do you think we need?"
Context: Beyond the sheer numbers, this question tests the prospective Sales Director's ability to align team size with company goals. It is a reflection of their strategic foresight and ability to balance growth with efficiency.

3. Transaction volume experience

Question: "Please share your experiences with different deal sizes and their implications for salespeople in the sales department?"
Context: Different deal sizes come with unique challenges and opportunities. A candidate's versatility in different deal sizes may indicate their adaptability and ability to adjust sales strategies to different scenarios.


4. Experience in team building

Question: "Please tell us about building sales teams in previous positions."
Context: This question delves into the journey of a leadership candidate. This is an opportunity to understand approaches to talent acquisition, mentoring, team dynamics and conflict resolution.

5. Knowledge of sales tools

Question: "Please discuss the sales tools you advocate and their impact on sales management."
Context : In an era of digital transformation, the use of the right tools can be groundbreaking. This question assesses the candidate's technological sophistication and commitment to continuous improvement.

6. Loyalty test

Question: "Who from your current team would be willing to embark on a new professional journey with you and join our company?"
Context: Loyalty is a two-way street. This question not only assesses a candidate's attractiveness as a leader, but also his or her ability to nurture and retain top salespeople.

7. Sales and customer service cooperation

Question: "How do you envision closing the gap between sales achievement and sustained customer success?"
Context: A forward-thinking sales executive realizes that the sale is only the beginning of the customer journey. Their post-sale engagement strategy can be a testament to their long-term vision.

8 Dealing with competition

Question: "Please tell us about a situation in which a competitor outperformed your company and the lessons you learned from it in your organization."
Context: This question unquestionably tests the candidate's humility, resilience to failure, and focus on learning from their actions. It's not about failure, but about getting back into action quickly.

Recruiting Head of Sales

9. Collaboration with technical and support teams

Question: "How can a smooth collaboration between sales and technical teams be arranged, especially during complex sales cycles?"
Context: In SaaS, the technical aspects of the product are intertwined with sales. A candidate's approach to this collaboration can reveal their holistic view of the sales process.

10. Taking responsibility for revenues

Question: "Given our current metrics and market position, where do you see our revenue going in the next quarter?"
Context: This question is a litmus test of a candidate's analytical skills, market awareness and ambition.

11. Sales and Marketing synergy

Question: "Please describe a successful campaign in which sales and marketing worked together effectively."
Context : This provides insight into the candidate's experience with integrated campaigns and his or her belief in interdepartmental cooperation.


Bonus question: Dealing with SNW (Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt).

Question: "How do you deal with challenges posed by competitors, especially when they resort to spreading fear, uncertainty and doubt (English FUD)?"
Context:: This question delves into a candidate's crisis management skills, ethical stance and strategic prowess.

Deep Dive: Intangibles

While the above questions are key to assessing a candidate's expertise and strategic knowledge, it is equally important to assess intangibles: their passion for the industry, their cultural fit with the company and their vision for the future. These elements, often gleaned from informal conversations and observations, can be the factors that distinguish a good manager from a great one.


In an era where technology has become a driving force, the position of Sales Director in the SaaS industry is becoming increasingly important. Today's digital world, with an emphasis on SaaS in many sectors, requires the right sales leader. It used to be that their main tasks were to achieve sales goals, manage a team and build relationships. Today, they are also visionaries who must look to the future.

In a SaaS environment, it is crucial for the Sales Director to have a thorough knowledge of the technology. He or she must know how the applications, platforms work and be aware of their advantages and disadvantages. In a world that is changing rapidly, flexibility and willingness to learn become key. The hiring process for this position has also changed. Now companies are looking not only for people with sales skills, but also those with vision and adaptability.

In summary, in a world where technology and SaaS are constantly evolving, the role of the Sales Director is evolving. Their position is becoming more complex. To succeed, companies need to select leaders who, in addition to their traditional skills, are ready to lead in an unpredictable future.



Fast Forward Solutions - your source for the best professionals

Fast Forward Solutions specializes in recruitment services in the areas of IT, e-commerce, sales and marketing. Our rigorous methodology combines role profiling, executive search and candidate assessment, supported by consulting services. As a result, we guarantee efficiency and rapid acquisition of the best talent on the market. With our support, any company can increase sales, reduce operating costs, improve the efficiency of human resources management and strengthen investor confidence.


About the author: Tomasz Bożyczko

Tomasz Bożyczko is an experienced sales leader, CEO and founder of Fast Forward Solutions. His passion for recruiting and developing teams has contributed to the success of many organizations. Tomasz is an expert in hiring top talent and improving recruitment processes.

We hope these tips will help you create compelling job opportunities and optimize your recruitment process to attract the most valuable employees for your company.

B2B sales-5 core competences

B2B sales-5 core competences

B2B sales - How to find the best salesman?

B2B sales-finding the best B2B salesperson is becoming increasingly difficult. Recent research shows that the best salespeople-those who exceed their targets year-on-year-account for only about 20% of the total sales force.

So what gives such a small pool of sales talent a competitive advantage?

B2B sales - What is it and why is it different?

B2B sales, or "Business to Business" sales, refer to business transactions between two companies, rather than between a company and an individual consumer. Unlike B2C ("Business to Consumer") sales, where products or services are sold directly to consumers, B2B sales focus on providing products, services or solutions to other companies. This can include everything from selling raw materials to manufacturers to providing software to technology companies. Due to the nature of the customer and the greater complexity of the transaction, B2B sales often require a more complicated approach and a longer sales cycle.


Here are 5 key skills that only the best B2B salespeople possess:


1. the ability to understand the B2B buyer

To be successful, a salesperson must understand his buyer. B2B decision makers are busy and don't waste their time on salespeople who don't understand their needs. Sellers who don't understand their customers are 73% less likely to succeed. That's why the best salespeople thoroughly research their customers' needs, participate in industry training and continuously learn.


2. ability to communicate values

The best salespeople know how to communicate the value of their product. Studies show that salespeople who can do this are 35% more likely to succeed. It is important for salespeople to focus on the customer's needs, not just the product. This means they need to be well prepared, know the competition and be able to customize their offerings.


3. ability to build trust

Trust is key in B2B sales. Unfortunately, many salespeople are not trusted by their customers. The best salespeople are able to build lasting relationships with customers, which translates into a greater chance of success. This means regular meetings, transparency in communication and integrity in performance.


4. critical thinking skills

In the age of "big data," the ability to analyze data is crucial. The best salespeople are able to use analytical tools to optimize their operations. As a result, they are able to better understand the market, the competition and the needs of their customers.


5. ability to manage time effectively

Time is money. The best salespeople know how to manage their time effectively to maximize their results. They use modern time management tools, such as scheduling and workflow apps.


Plus: Technology in B2B sales

Today, technology plays a key role in B2B sales. Top salespeople use modern CRM, sales automation and data analytics tools to stay one step ahead of the competition.


Summary - The key to success in B2B sales

Success in B2B sales does not come easily. It requires a combination of skills, knowledge and determination. As you can see, it's not just about knowing the product or service, but also about understanding the customer, building trust and using modern technology tools. In today's fast-changing B2B world, those who invest in developing these key skills will have a competitive advantage. If you're an entrepreneur or sales team leader, it's worth considering what steps you can take to help your team succeed. Fast Forward Solutions is here to help you through the process, providing you with the best talent and tools you need to succeed in B2B sales.

Sales Team Recruitment: The Key to Your Company's Success

Sales Team Recruitment: The Key to Your Company's Success

Sales Team Recruitment: The Key to Your Company's Success 🚀


Building a sales team from scratch is a challenge comparable to a captain assembling a crew for the first voyage. Nothing is certain in the business world, and the right crew can determine success or failure. As you embark on the adventure of assembling your first sales team, it pays to know the potential pitfalls. Drawing on tips from my personal experience as a longtime Head of Sales, then a C-Level Executive Search recruiter and one of the start-up sales experts Jason M. Lemkin, this article outlines the most common mistakes founders make and advises on how to avoid them.


🚀 10 Most Common Mistakes 🚫 when Recruiting Your First Sales Team and How to Defend Yourself Against Them.


1. 🤝 Sales Conducted by the Founder.

Before you think about hiring a sales team, you, as the founder, should be the first salesperson. Immerse yourself in the daily challenges, learn about your product and connect with potential customers. This is a priceless experience. Getting to know the customer firsthand will allow you to better understand their needs and customize your product offering.


2. ⏰ The right time to hire a Director of Sales (Head of Sales)

Hiring a Sales Director too early can be a costly mistake. His role is to scale and improve the sales process. Therefore, you must first have an established, repeatable sales process. Often companies make the mistake of hiring for this position too early, leading to unnecessary costs.


3. 👥 Hire people you would buy from yourself

Your first salespeople will set the tone for the entire sales operation. They should be people you identify with. Consider whether you would feel comfortable buying a product from them. If the answer is no, you may want to rethink your hiring decision.


4 🌍 Bet on diversity.

A diverse sales team brings in many prospects. Make sure you have a diverse team in terms of personalities and styles. In today's global business world, diversity is the key to success because it allows you to understand and serve different market segments.


5. 💰 Fair pay is key

Sales is a tough profession, and your representatives should be compensated accordingly. Nowadays, competition for talent especially sales talent is fierce, so offering a competitive compensation package is key to attracting and retaining the best.


sales team recruitment



6. ⌛ Respond quickly to poor performance

In the dynamic world of sales, time is of the essence. If your sales force is underperforming, a quick rethink of its role is necessary. Otherwise, you may lose valuable resources and miss business opportunities.


7. 👜 The role of the Sales Director

Your Sales Director should be a leader, not another salesperson. His or her main job is to lead the team, train new members and scale sales operations.


8. 📈 Experience of salespeople in your industry is important

While transferable skills are important, there is nothing like the industry experience of a sales person who really wants to work for your company. In the world of start-ups, where everything changes quickly, experience in a particular industry can be the key to success.


9. 🌟 Familiar company names of your potential traders are not enough

It may sound impressive to have a representative/sales person from a large, well-known company, but make sure he or she fits the challenges of your organization. Large corporations operate differently than start-ups, so it's important that your employees are flexible and ready to work in a dynamic environment.


10. ❤️ Keep Your Stars

Your best salespeople are priceless. Do everything in your power to retain them. In today's competitive job market, retaining top talent can be the key to long-term success.



Building a sales team is a combination of art and science. It requires intuition, strategy and a deep understanding of your product and market. Remember, the right team can determine the success of your start-up. Choose wisely and wish you smooth sailing! 🚀



Read also: The most common mistakes employers make during the recruitment process

Fast Forward Solutions specializes in IT | Engineering | Digital Marketing | Sales recruitment services . Our rigorous and proven methodology combines role profiling, candidate outreach through the Direct Search method and candidate assessment, complemented by consulting services. We provide guaranteed results, and quickly reach the best talent available in the market, so that any organization working with us will be able to increase sales, reduce operating costs and improve human resource efficiency, company valuation and investor confidence.

Tomasz Bożyczko is an experienced sales leader, president and founder of FFS

The sales team - how to get rid of the best ones quickly

The sales team - how to get rid of the best ones quickly

Why put in the effort to please your sales team when you can alienate and push them to work for other companies? Why work to maintain a healthy sales force when you can sabotage them at every turn, here are 12 battle-tested tips on how to get rid of your best sales people from your team within a quarter.


1. ceiling at sales commissions.

High-performing sales organisations consistently attract and retain the best sales talent, rewarding them with well-tailored incentive schemes that are better than the market average.

Commissions are the easiest and quickest way to cripple the sales force. Running a cap on commissions removes the incentive for salespeople to close sales when the cap is reached and motivates them to carry the deal over to the next billing period known as 'sandbagging'.

When it is, for example, a quarter, an organisation can suffer measurable losses due to uninvoiced customers.

Frequent changes in the sales team's compensation plan

Changing the rules of the game is the quickest way to frustrate players. Informing the Sales Department that their ripening potential sales opportunities will lead to a lower payout than expected demoralises the team.

If a correction is necessary, proper advance notice should be given to the team along with the preparation of a specific rationale behind the decision.

3. payment of commission only for the sale of certain products/services.

If a salesperson makes a sale that generates a desired profit for the company, pay them for it. Paying commissions only on sales of some products and not others, despite both sales generating profit for the company, demotivates the best employees.

Rewarding a representative for every sale that benefits the company aligns them with the company's goal.

4 Punish the sales team for poor after-sales service.

Punishing the team for after-sales service distracts from making the sale.

The best companies focus their reps on delivering sales results, constantly rewarding excellent performance. Salespeople have different approaches to the after-sales relationship with customers.

As long as sales reps make the sale and maintain a healthy relationship after so-called "delivery", no matter how committed they are, they should achieve the desired result. Perhaps the solution here is to specialise salespeople - hunters and farmers?

5. failure to provide innovative products and services.

The best salespeople need to sell great solutions. They are not content to sell "we have that too" offers. Top performing sales organisations must deliver products that solve significant customer problems.

Otherwise they risk losing salespeople to competitors who develop really good and innovative products.

6. keeping weak salespeople on the sales team.

If hiring good salespeople seems expensive, talk to any sales leader who has ever built a team of mediocre salespeople.

Unprofitable salespeople drain financial resources, strain managerial resources and damage brand reputation in the marketplace.

Filling a vacancy quickly can be tempting, but it shows other better sales people that you don't need to put in the effort, which in turn results in an overall reduction in the performance of the whole team. Is it worth it?

7. a sales manager who never leaves the office

Managers cannot manage sales from Sauron's tower. Successful managers are fully engaged with customers to discover their needs and are connected to their team. Representatives should meet with customers along with their managers. For Inside Sales managers, the rule is the same.

They should be calling in video calls or phone calls with Customers. There is nothing more frustrating than receiving feedback from a manager who is out of touch with the reality of a sales team meeting with customers without the support of that manager. The best sales leaders take the time to develop relationships with customers and employees because they build trust. They are not interested in receiving information from the field directly from the customer.

8. avoiding training and coaching.

Coaching not only impacts company revenue, it is also a retention tool that is directly linked to job satisfaction. Studies show that salespeople who have regular training and coaching are 2 x more likely to recommend their workplace to others. In other words, they are 'promoters', using the standard NPS (Net Promoter Score) measure of satisfaction.

9. taking on and taking away the best clients by the supervisor or allocating them to their favourites in the team.

Let your representatives be responsible for their own work. Chuck Blakeman, business consultant and author ofMaking Money Is Killing your Business, writes: "Ownership is the most powerful motivator in business, and the ability to make decisions is the foundation of ownership."

Reps who retain ownership of a potential customer from the nurture stage have an incentive to close them. Managers should let sales close to those salespeople who have generated their leads and lead the customer to the sales closing process.

10. focusing on working time instead of results.

Results are important. The best salespeople thrive in an environment where their performance is measured against measurable business objectives.

It can seem frustratingly irrelevant when a sales leader places too much importance on the hours a rep works, the work and time spent 'sitting around' or drinking coffee while that salesperson delivers results. Of course when we have a sales process built - our sales team should follow it.

Micromanaging your team demotivates your sales team to perform. To retain top sales talent, set clear expectations of success and focus your KPIs on those results.

11. payment of commissions with long delays.

Providing sales reps with a direct link between their positive actions and their commissions is the best way to reinforce the right sales behaviours and keep them loyal and productive.

It can be demotivating for a top BDM to deliver great sales and not receive commissions. Providing reps with a direct link between their positive actions and their commissions is the best way to reinforce the right sales behaviors and keep them loyal.According to Mark Roberge, who built the sales team at HubSpot, bonuses/commissions must be paid immediately.

12. forcing salespeople to attend too many internal meetings.

Time spent in meetings is time when representatives could be selling. Before inviting your sales team to a meeting, seriously consider whether it is absolutely necessary. If it's not necessary, don't make them sit in. If you absolutely must include them, make sure you have a clear and specific agenda.

Move through it quickly and systematically. The best thing you can do for your reps if they absolutely have to be in a meeting is to provide the maximum amount of information in the minimum amount of time. Instead, start each meeting with an agenda. It is important to stick to the agenda once it has been set.


 These mistakes could cost you the loss of your best performing salespeople. If you find yourself doing something on the list above, stop immediately. Use these 12 proven tips if you can.

None of this is worth risking giving up the salespeople you have recruited so hard.


Fast Forward Solutions specialises in recruitment and consultancy services in sales and digital marketing primarily for clients in the new technology sector. Our rigorous and proven methodology combines role profiling, executive search and candidate assessment, complemented by consultancy services.

We provide guaranteed results and fast access to the best talent available in the market, so that any organisation working with us will be able to increase sales, reduce operating costs and improve human resource efficiency, company valuation and investor confidence. Please read our privacy policy. Tomasz Bożyczko is an experienced sales leader, president and founder of FFS


Is your sales team ready for transformation?

Is your sales team ready for transformation?

The sales team - digital transformation


Is your sales team ready to transform your existing sales process into inbound sales. Why are salespeople having more and more difficulty with cold calls?

The use of disruptive innovations is often thought of in terms of how they affect industry development. The use of the Uber app has modified the way the transport sector operates. Netflix has changed the way people browse channels on their TVs. But disruptive technologies that change the way we do business are often overlooked, and their impact is not always recognised in time, when it is not too late.

Companies like Hubspot have refocused the purpose of their marketing efforts on acquiring leads through the Inbound Marketing method. Conducting marketing activities in such a way as to provide customers with the content they need when they are preparing to make a purchase has facilitated a self-directed customer journey, where a potential buyer completes 80%-90% of that journey even before speaking to a sales associate.

For this reason, the previous Prospect - Demo - Close model, which has been used by sales departments for decades, is no longer effective.

Cold phone calls or cold email marketing are most often rejected by customers who do not wish to be harassed by tiresome salespeople and prefer to find out about the product themselves. The introduction of an innovative process has shown how outdated the sales model is in companies of all sizes.

It has been replaced by a new model that consists of the following steps: Identify - Explore - Connect - Advise and situates the salesperson in uncharted territory. Once qualified marketing leads have been collected, the sales department no longer works hard to close the deal. Sales professionals are tasked with focusing on the needs of buyers, not sellers. They are expected to act as advisors to their clients, guiding them through the entire sales process until they decide to make a purchase.

This process is called inbound selling, and salespeople are required to have a different kind of skill set. Is your sales team ready to change the sales process?


A transformed process means updated skill sets within the sales team.

The success of inbound marketing and lead generation programmes has put control of the sales cycle from the sales team directly into the hands of buyers. This shift in control has completely changed the sales process and the skills needed within the sales team.

Assessing and hiring a sales team capable of evaluating the sales process from the buyer's perspective will keep you at the forefront of sales while setting your company up for long-term sales success. Using a predictive assessment tool to identify sales candidates who are most likely to have the traits; skills and abilities needed for inbound sales, such as Chally, will help you find the right salesperson.

Fast Forward Solutions specialises in recruitment and consultancy services in sales and digital marketing primarily for clients in the new technology sector. Our rigorous and proven methodology combines role profiling, executive search and candidate assessment, complemented by consultancy services. We provide guaranteed results and fast access to the best talent available on the market, so that any organisation working with us will be able to increase sales, reduce operating costs and improve human resource efficiency, company valuation and investor confidence. Tomasz Bożyczko is an experienced sales leader, president and founder of FFS