Losing an outstanding VP of Sales can set your startup back.

Founders: 5 Ways to Retain Your VP of Sales

Amy Volas
9 min readFeb 11


The market is competitive — especially for highly sought-after roles like the VP of Sales for SaaS startups.

Sales turnover is nearly 3X higher than any other industry. Not to mention, it’s one of the hardest roles for startups to fill.


If an opportunity isn’t providing everything a VP of Sales needs to grow the business and thrive, they will be ripe for the picking.

And they don’t have to try too hard either. The market has reached a fever pitch with countless opportunities proactively coming their way daily with enticing statements to try to woo them to their company.

Yes, it’s great to get an offer signed. But that’s only the first step toward developing one of the most important relationships for the future of your company.

If you’ve worked so hard to hire someone, why let them dangle in the wind and not support them? All that does is increase your odds of losing someone you worked so hard to hire in the first place.

This is why it’s so important to focus on retaining this mission-critical person.

Top 3 Reasons Sales Leaders Leave

1. Issues with the Founder or Company Leadership

Alignment is the new loyalty. The relationship between the founder and VP of Sales is critical to the company. This hire catapults your business forward or sets it back. How you work together makes or breaks what happens.

One point of contention I often see is the language barrier between first-time or technical founders and sales. Founders focus on the outcome, and sales leaders think about the “why’s,” “how’s,” and “what’s” to get there.

It’s a common breakdown in communication that can lead to the wrong assumptions, disagreements, and misunderstandings down the line. Big disconnects between a founder and a sales leader are bound to spell disaster if it’s not worked out early. It’s why I’m a big advocate of setting the stage early and often for expectations together.



Amy Volas

Helping SaaS startups hire executive Sales and CS leaders without the cringe ⋆ Personally closed $100MM+ ⋆ Founder/CEO ⋆ 2 Exits ⋆ LP ⋆ Sharing lessons here