Planview has one mission: to build the future of connected work. Our goal is not only to empower our customers to focus on the work that matters most, but also our own teams and there is no denying that when working within a sales organization, collaboration, focus, and communication is crucial to success.
Which leads us to our employee spotlight! Today we are learning more about Dave Frechette, a Senior Vice President of Sales at Planview. He is sharing his daily life inside and outside of the office, what a thriving sales organization looks like, and advice on purposeful career advancement. Here is what Dave has to say:
Explain your role as a SVP of Sales at Planview and a few of your responsibilities.
I am the SVP of Sales for Mid-Market North America. I have a team of 3 Vice Presidents of Sales and 22 Account Executives. Our team is responsible for closing business with new customers and expanding our revenue with existing customers. All while retaining our annual recurring revenue. Mid-Market (companies under $1B in annual revenues, city/county government agencies and higher education) is our fastest growing business segment within Planview. We have a goal to increase annual revenues 50% year-over-year.
As a SVP of Sales, what type of meetings do you prepare for? Who do you typically collaborate with?
I spend about 90% of my meeting time interacting with internal (Planview) stakeholders. Here are the teams I collaborate with:
- Marketing for pipeline generation activities.
- Sales leadership and account executives on closing business that leads to new revenue.
- Professional services leadership to improve pre and post sales engagements.
- Customer success so that we can have happy customers to expand our solutions.
- Revenue Enablement and Revenue Operations for business insights and analytics to accelerate business.
Additionally, on a monthly cadence, I am spending time with our C-Suite and other leaders that help us execute our go-to-market strategy. Every meeting is important! I always prepare for these meetings and am ready to take notes with key action items or to
Tell us about working from home – what are your tips for success?
I get up every day and act like I am going to the office. In sales, you should dress for success. I expect my team to represent the brand of Planview even if you are online with Zoom meetings. Working at home and on Zoom meetings most of the day can be exhausting. My advice is to make sure to schedule breaks. At a minimum I schedule a 1-hour lunch. This way I can get away from my desk, eat lunch, read a book, or catch up on the news.
Tell us about your career journey to date?
I have been in Enterprise Software sales for 31 years and this is my 5th time being a sales leader. Previously, I was the Chief Revenue Officer at Clarizen before the merger last year. I like sales leadership but often miss the sales roles where I interacted with the customer or prospect. Being the SVP of Sales is more operational and strategy execution which is important to scale our business.
How is Planview different from other companies you’ve worked for?
This is my first experience merging three separate companies together to create one unified market leader. It is hard and has its challenges, but the opportunity is so big for us all at Planview. I would say that we are starting to find our groove and starting to build a culture. I am extremely excited about our people strategy led by Razat and Jay and how we are truly putting our people first.
What is the biggest lesson you’ve learned as you’ve moved up in your career?
You cannot just communicate problems to your manager and others that support you. You should use the power of observation and think through the impact your problem represents to you and your team. Be ready to suggest or propose solutions to the problem. In short, do not bring up problems without explaining the negative impact that is hurting you or your team. Lastly, be prepared to make suggestions or recommendations and take ownership!
Are there any experiences in your life that you feel contributed to your professional success?
Playing sports most of my life has made me a super competitive person. This competitiveness drives me to wake up every day to win. It also has contributed to much of my success in sales and leadership. Plus, getting married and having children really focused me on my career as I needed to quickly earn more money 😉
As a SVP of Sales, how do you make time for your team?
As an SVP of Sales, it is ALL about my team. Without them I cannot perform my job! I am very intentional with structured meeting cadences that cover a variety of topics during each team or individual meeting.
What makes your team so effective?
An effective team is a team that understands their role, responsibilities, goals, and results. They understand their resources and how to leverage effectively. The key to scaling sales is figuring out how to “sell through” your team vs. “selling with your team.” It sounds simple, but it is hard… we hire highly effective people, and you must enable them to execute against their goals. I also hire for diversity across my leadership and account executives. Diversity is proven to have a higher performance compared to a homogenous team.
Are there any current job openings on your team?
Yes, I have openings for Account Executives. If you think you would be a good fit please submit your resume on the Planview Careers Page.
What advice to you give to anyone wanting to work in sales?
If you want to be in sales, you need to be born an extravert. Or at least it helps… it can be exhausting interacting with people all day and every day. You must also be a strong communicator and comfortable asking questions. Another important asset is listening. Listen for key data points along the sales engagement.
Best career advice you have received?
I was told by a great mentor of mine that “I need to learn Talent Strategy and Talent Development along with Operations if I want to be an effective sales leader.” Leveraging data from the operational data along with your talent will help you identify a team or person’s area for improvement. So, I did just that… I left sales for 4 years, built Revenue Enablement, and ran world-wide Revenue Operations at a $300M SaaS company. I accomplished this before becoming a CRO or SVP of Sales. This advice has really helped me stand out as many sales leaders lack this knowledge and experience.
From your perspective, why is Planview a great place to work?
The people! Everyone that is here today wants to be here and they are in it for the long haul. Our people make Planview a great place to work.
For fun, how do you unwind when you are off the clock?
Golf or hiking on nice days! Reading, or binge-watching Netflix on poor weather days.
Is Planview right for you?
If you are seeking new opportunities or want to advance your career in Sales, make sure to view the current Sales openings on our Careers page. Not a salesperson? Planview is growing leaps and bounds and we are actively recruiting for all different departments. Make sure to check our openings and apply online.