4 min read

SDR Game #13: 5 tips for SDRs starting out in the world of tech sales

Bonjour 👋

Happy Sunday to 1,020 motivated SDRs.

Here're 5 tips for new Sales Development Representatives.

Today's newsletter takes about 4 minutes to read.

Happy prospecting.


PS: back after 2 weeks of conferences, it was great to meet people following this newsletter in person in Montpellier and Viva Tech in Paris. Can't wait to be back at another event.

Today we'll talk about a question I got asked on LinkedIn by a new SDR:

What advice would you give to a new sales development representative when they first get hired?

I love this question so much because I didn't get the chance to ask this when I started (or maybe I wasn't enough curious to go talk to other SDR teams to learn about this).

Here are 5 tips for new SDRs:

  1. Fall in love with your process, not your goals
  2. Compete with yourself
  3. Have fun
  4. Decide today to be successful in your career.
  5. Don't reinvent the wheel (80% of your time) and at the same time be creative (20%)

Tip #1 Fall in love with your process, not your goals

You can read everywhere that the best way to be a top performer you need to fix high and specific goals.

And I did this when was an SDR at Talkpush and Chili Piper.

Then I realized that my results are nothing to do with my goals.

Because some weeks I booked 2 meetings and the week after 8.

Focus on systems, not on goals.

In sales, you control your system, not your goals or results.

Goals are about the results you want to achieve but systems are about the processes that get to those results.

To achieve your goals you need to first build your systems made of single processes and habits that will take you to your goals.

For example, if your goal is to get 12 qualified demos per month, as an SDR.

Your system to achieve this goal will be:

  • the number of emails sent,
  • The quality of those emails
  • Number of dials
  • If you are calling the right personas
  • The number of prospects added to your cadences per day.
  • Etc
"You do not rise to the level of your goals. You fall to the level of your systems." James Clear, Atomic Habits

Outcome > Process

Tip #2 Compete with yourself

Stop wasting energy comparing your performance to other SDRs.

I made the same mistake when I started at Chili Piper.

I was comparing myself to our top performer and I was anxious about it.

Every day, I was talking with my wife about that.

I was not performing and I didn’t know what I was doing wrong.

Comparing myself to our top performers didn’t help me grow.

So I stopped focusing on the top performers and focused on myself.

  • Started spending time with our top performers to learn about them and see what can I implement into my process.
  • Stop checking the dashboard of the SDR team to see where yo
  • Stop checking the Slack channel where you can see all the meetings booked by the rest of the team

You are not competing with the rest of the team.

You compete with yourself.

Are you a better version of yourself compared to yesterday? 1 month ago? 6 months ago?

If so. You are doing fine.

Stop comparing your chapter 9 to someone else’s chapter 15.

Also, don't forget that everyone has different goals.

Tip #3 Have fun

The SDR job is hard so, learn to have fun during your days, when you got rejected

The quicker you learn to enjoy the job, the quicker you will enjoy getting rejected,.

Being rejected is part of the job

  • Enjoy the grind.
  • Learn 1 new thing per day and test it in your outreach.
  • Create your system
  • Add your personality to your outreach
  • Find a friend that does an SDR job
  • Try new prospecting approaches
  • Etc.

If you just do what are you supposed to do, you won't enjoy being an SDR.

If your goal is to be promoted quickly to another job: AE, SDR manager, etc. You won't focus on the right things and you'll be frustrated if you don't get the job.

The skills you learn as an SDR will help you with your career.

Tip #4 Decide today to be successful in your career.

You are in control of your career.

So you need to work hard about this and take control of your learning and growth.

"Formal Education will make you a living… Self Education will make you a fortune." – Jim Rohn

Learning is a journey

I learned it the hard way.

After getting my Master's degree, I thought I knew everything to have success in my career.

I thought I won’t need to learn new things.

I thought I didn’t have to read a book or study.

Then I got my first job.

I was bad.

I was expecting that my manager will coach and train me.

To get good at my job.

It didn’t happen.

I was wrong.

So I start learning on my own.

Read blog articles.

Listen to podcasts.

One day, I read Predictable Revenue.

I was blown away.

I learned more by reading a book than I did during my Master's degree.

Since that day, I've never stopped learning on top of my jobs.

Yes, your company can train you.

But you are in control of your self-development and your career.

Tip #5 Don't reinvent the wheel (80% of your time) and at the same time be creative (20%)

Because the SDR job is hard and sometimes people think is not fun.

If you know the process works. Focus 80% of your time on what works. 20% on new things.

By new things, I mean:

  • Video
  • Voice notes on LinkedIn
  • Personalized gif:
  • Add more research to your outreach
  • New subject lines
  • A new channel
  • Etc

Focus on something you are not good at or want to improve or just want to learn a new skill.

Yeah but Elric, my manager doesn't let me try video. Yes, I get that. But if you hit quota, you can be creative to enjoy the job. Because if you just do the same stuff over and over you will be bored.

If your process doesn't work or the company process doesn't work. It's where you need to be creative and test new things that no one tried on your team.

Talk to your manager to let them know that you are going to be creative. At the end of the month, most managers focus on results.

But if your manager cares more about you sending 200 emails, you still don't get results, and your manager won't let you be creative. Well, you are not working with a good manager.

Thanks for reading.

That's all for this Sunday. 5 simple tips for new SDRs.

Quick Reminder: If you like my emails please do “add to address book” or reply.

See you again next Sunday.



Enjoy the newsletter? Please forward to a friend. It only takes 10 seconds. Writing it takes me 3 hours.

New round here? Welcome. SDR Game here. Join the newsletter here :)