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Real Life Superpowers

Real Life Superpowers



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E23 - Mark Roberge (Bestselling Author, Harvard Business Lecturer, Stage 2 Capital, HubSpot)

Mark is a Senior Lecturer at Harvard Business School where he teaches sales, marketing, and entrepreneurship. Listen on RealLifeSuperPowers website: He is also Managing Director at Stage 2 Capital, a venture capital firm backed and run by go-to-market executives, helping startups build world class go-to-market capabilities. He is the author of the bestselling book The Sales Acceleration Formula: Using Data, Technology, and Inbound Selling to go from $0 to $100 Million. Prior to these roles, Mark served as SVP of Global Sales and Services at HubSpot, scaling revenue from $0 to $100 million. Mark was ranked #19 in Forbes' Top 30 Social Sellers in the World. He is an MIT graduate and has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Forbes Magazine, Inc. Magazine, Boston Globe, TechCrunch, Harvard Business Review, and other major publications for his entrepreneurial ventures. Mark is very open to seizing opportunities. Throughout his career he didn’t cling to a predetermined path. He had an initial grand plan, but none of the big career achievements in his life (leading the sales in HubSpot, writing a book, joining the faculty at HBS, starting a VC firm) ended up a part of it. They all happened because when opportunities knocked he had the wisdom and openness to go along with them. No tunnel vision, no traditional textbook plan. His choices are probably not the first connotations that come to mind when envisioning a career path of a lecturer in Harvard, and it’s probably what makes him so unique and a source of actionable insights and inspiration. Early on in his career Mark fell in love with the startup scene. He was passionate about it and was not deterred by the risk factor, realising stability at big companies wasn’t guaranteed either. In general, contrary to popular belief Mark doesn’t think it’s that risky to go to startup. “An individual startup is risky, but if you pick a hot industry, and you get the company wrong, you usually have significantly increased your market ability and even stability”. Inline with the overall arch of his career, going into sales and joining HubSpot wasn’t a path he had planned in advance. It fell on his lap in a serendipitous way. It was at a stage where a startup he had founded wasn’t working as he had hoped. He had a mortgage, student loans, his wife was pregnant and he had a baby at home. He thought he might have to go work at a big company, which would have been soul crushing for him as a passionate entrepreneur. Brian and Darmesh, the HubSpot founders asked him to join, and he figured he could collect a steady paycheck for four months and get his feet under himself. “10 years later we’re ringing the bell on the NY stock exchange taking this thing public”. Following his success in HubSpot he set forth on a life mission to help entrepreneurs generate revenue and dramatically decrease the failure rates of startups. That mission has become the compass for all of his career choices. We discuss: Business schools - when is it a good idea to take that path What to look for when hiring What he looks for in a company from an investor perspective (revenue isn’t as high up on the list as many would assume) Things to consider both during a sales process and when raising money Much more If you’re at a crossroad in life, hesitating whether to take on one risk or another, this episode might just be the inspirational wind beneath the wings you’re in need of. All of you business guys out there, no matter what your role is, we strongly recommend reading his book. Here’s a link: We hope you enjoy your listen! Zooming out, if you like listening to this podcast, make sure to subscribe so you don’t miss new conversations with peak performers, serving as a reminder we can all tap into the best versions of ourselves.

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