The Revenue Compass Blog

At the heart of many B2B technical and professional services firms lies the Founder Rainmaker. These individuals often started their companies fueled by passion or expertise, and they've been the primary force behind winning business. However, as the company grows, relying solely on the founder's sales efforts becomes limiting. Many founders find themselves at a crossroads, realizing that in order to achieve sustainable growth and eventually exit their firm, they need to build a high-performing sales team.

Challenges Faced by Founder Rainmakers:

Founder Rainmakers commonly encounter challenges when attempting to transition from sole sales drivers to sales team builders. Despite their best efforts, traditional approaches to hiring salespeople or outsourcing sales functions often result in disappointment and frustration. It's common for Founder Rainmakers to feel that nobody can sell quite like they can (because they can't), or that they're simply not cut out to be sales managers (because they are probably not).

The Path to Success:

Building a high performing sales team is not an impossible feat; it just requires a strategic approach and realistic expectations. First things first, they will need to build and execute an effective outbound sales strategy. Here are five essential steps to guide Founder Rainmakers on this journey:

  1. Clearly Define Your Ideal Client Profile: Understand the unique and specific characteristics and needs of your target clients to focus your sales efforts effectively.
  2. Deeply Understand Key Stakeholders: Identify the decision-makers and influencers involved in the sales process and work to understand their primary responsibilities, performance measures, problems & positive outcomes.
  3. Craft Compelling Value Messaging: Identify your unique and comparative differentiators to construct an effective value proposition tailored to your specific key stakeholders.
  4. Build a Targeted Prospecting List: Create a list of high-potential prospects that align with your ideal client profile, ensuring that your sales efforts are directed towards the most promising opportunities.
  5. Establish Outreach Communication and Cadence: Develop a structured approach to outreach that adds value to your prospects and maintains consistency in your communication efforts.

Managing Expectations:

Founder Rainmakers must acknowledge that building a high-performing sales team is a gradual process requiring time, dedication, and patience. While the ultimate goal may be to find a salesperson capable of running the entire sales process and closing new clients, it's unrealistic to expect someone to replicate the founder's sales success right away. Instead, the immediate objective is for the salesperson to set qualification meetings and create more opportunities for the Founder Rainmaker.

Over time, through observation and coaching, the salesperson can gradually progress to effectively leading the next stages of the sales process, including running qualification, discovery, proposal presentations, and final proposal reviews. This progression involves nurturing their skills to handle each stage independently, eventually leading to the ability to train and mentor others to do the same.

There are no shortcuts. Hiring experienced salespeople solely based on their rolodex often leads to costly outcomes (I have yet to see that approach succeed). Similarly, hiring an entry level business development rep, or worse, resorting to outsourced appointment setting without a coherent sales playbook is doomed from the outset.


Founder Rainmakers can indeed build a high-performing outbound sales team with the right approach and mindset. By following a structured strategy, managing expectations, and avoiding common pitfalls, they can create a sales engine that drives sustainable growth and ultimately adds value to their firm.

Nexts Steps

For Founder Rainmakers eager to take action, here is my "live" 6-week cohort-based course: "Beyond the Founder Rainmaker - Building Your Outbound Sales Strategy" kicking off on April 9th. Limited to just 8 participants, this course provides the direction and guidance you need to design and customize your outbound sales strategy.

Go Deeper

Carver Peterson helps growth-minded leaders and organizations achieve predictable and sustainable revenue growth through a refined strategy, defined process and aligned structure.