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No Laughing Matter: An Interview With Feedvisor SDR Manager, Jake Wolpert
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In this wide-ranging interview, Blue Seedling’s Lauren Glover sat down with SDR Manager, Jake Wolpert to discuss all things Feedvisor. Get his thoughts on everything from the company’s culture to managing SDRs to stand-up comedy and where the company’s headed next.
What is your position at Feedvisor?
Right now, I am the SDR (sales development representative) manager after recently transitioning from an account executive position. I’ve been with the company for a little over a year and have been lucky enough to receive two promotions, from SDR to account executive and then to SDR manager. It’s been an exciting year at Feedvisor and I love that I’m able to bring more value and have more impact than the day before. Feedvisor is a place where you don’t just watch the company grow, but you can be directly responsible for that growth.
Wow, two promotions so quickly! How did that happen?
I think everyone else said, “No.” I’m kidding. I came to Feedvisor with a plan and a goal of becoming an account executive. I was lucky to have managers that helped me understand exactly what I needed to do to get there. Hitting my sales targets was an obvious goal, but I also wanted to make an impact outside of my SDR responsibilities. A fast-growing startup offers a lot of mobility because everyone wears a lot of hats. While that can be overwhelming at times, it’s actually a great opportunity to learn about all aspects of the company and earn respect from people outside of the sales team. Having cross-functional capabilities and good communication skills has always been very important to me, so I focus on maintaining strong relationships with the marketing and customer success teams. Feedvisor is a collaborative place. I wanted people to be able to trust me and to become a valuable resource to the company.
Being consistent is always on my mind. I take my reputation very seriously and I want to be known as someone who not only hits their targets but who also goes above and beyond what is asked. When there was an opportunity to become an SDR manager, it felt like the perfect chance to take a leadership position, pay it forward to the team I started on, and help them grow. As long as you’re willing to put in the work, there is so much room for growth at Feedvisor.
What were you doing before you joined Feedvisor?
I actually have a funny past, no pun intended. Besides mostly being in sales, I spent time as a stand-up comedian. Before joining Feedvisor, I earned my MBA at Rutgers Business School with a focus in marketing and strategy. At Rutgers, I learned that I wanted to work my way into a sales leadership position preferably in the tech startup world. I wanted to join a company that challenges inefficiencies. Feedvisor is exactly that in the e-commerce world, so it was perfect for me.
When you were looking at Feedvisor, what attracted you to the company?
I was looking for a company with a robust product in a fast-growing space. Feedvisor is truly innovative and really making an impact for Amazon sellers. It was also important to work for a company with a premium solution and significant resources dedicated to maintaining its edge in the e-commerce space. I also knew right away that there was an opportunity to grow here as we were building a New York office. I was initially looking at much larger companies until realizing I didn’t want to be one employee out of a hundred thousand. I wanted to be in a company where I could make an immediate impact. I really believed Feedvisor aligned with my goals. As I’ve grown over the past year, it reaffirms my decision.
What’s your strategy as a manager? How do you help your team grow?
I want my team to know that I am their resource for whatever they need to become a stronger SDR. I encourage them to be clear on exactly what they need from me. The most important part of being a manager is that if someone is committed to growing, working hard, and being accountable, they get as much of my time as they need. I want my team to feel comfortable asking for feedback on their calls or emails, or a better understanding of the product. Lastly, accountability is critical on our team. I like when my team knows exactly what I expect from them and what they can expect from you. It builds trust and makes sure everyone is getting their job done.
Are there any skills that you gained doing stand-up that make you a better manager or salesperson?
Well, since I’ve done stand-up, I have no fear of putting myself out there, which is very useful in sales. Not sure this is specifically from comedy, but I try to be observant and play to the crowd like you would if you’re on stage. Getting to know your audience is a similar process to getting to know your team, and how to connect with them. Above all, I try to never be too serious. I like to make people laugh and keep the mood light. If the team is working hard and hitting their numbers, I don’t have any problem with joking around especially if it keeps the energy up.
How would you describe the culture here at Feedvisor?
There’s no intimidating hierarchy here. You can be in the kitchen and start up a conversation with the CEO over coffee. You feel very encouraged to share ideas no matter how new or experienced you are. It comes down to the incredible variety of backgrounds and expertise we have here. There’s plenty of brainstorming that happens in the stairwell on the way into the office too and there’s no fear of sharing and getting feedback. Also, dogs. There are always dogs in the office. I just wish we knew who they belong to.
Also, the office is in a really exciting area of NYC, in Soho. I love that if I wanted to grab a sandwich, a Rolex, and five t-shirts for 10 dollars, I’d only have to walk 20 steps. It’s also nice that the entire company is all on one floor. We had been in various WeWork offices when I first started, so it was hard to develop a relationship with everyone. Now having everyone in the same space together is amazing. It’s so easy to connect with other teams and work collaboratively. Everyone here is charismatic and fun to hang out with.
The company itself has a culture of growth, and we just keep building on momentum. We’re in the process of releasing an even more robust solution geared toward a significantly larger market. I think it’s the perfect time to come on board and be part of a serious revolution that we’re causing in the e-commerce space.
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