Cristina Cordova, first Business Development hire at Stripe and former Head of Business Development at Pulse (acquired by LinkedIn), talks at length about a career in Business Development in Tech.
As part of Stripe, Cristina has led complex deals to rapidly expand Stripe’s business through partnerships with companies including Apple, Facebook, Freshbooks, GoDaddy, Intuit, OpenTable, Pinterest, Twitter, Volusion and Xero.
At Pulse, Cristina sourced and closed partnerships with hundreds of media organizations, including The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Los Angeles Times, Fox News, Reuters, Bloomberg & BBC News.
Cristina has a Bachelors in Political Science from Stanford University.
Some of the areas that Cristina touches upon in this episode include:
1. What is business development and how is it different from Sales
2. Examples of projects she has worked on, such as getting Pulse app pre-loaded on Kindle Fire
3. How BD deals can vary from product partnerships to simple cross-marketing/distribution deals
4. Stages in a typical project
5. How outreach to potential partners can happen through investors' networks, company's network and your own network.
6. How a small startup or a company looking for very specific deals, might look for a hire who is already very well networked
7. Why good BD people tend to be generalists
8. Interesting and challenging aspects of the job
9. How this can be a high-stakes job, with high highs and low lows
10. How this is a very external facing role, and so you need to be comfortable with working with people with a variety of different working styles
11. How a candidate's resume should ideally indicate whether they have worked with product or engineering in the past, prior deal experience and impact of those deals
12. Recommended resources
13. How you should join a company that has a negotiating style similar to yours and where you can learn from the people around you
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