CRO Spotlight

Charting the Course of Your Revenue Career, With Monique Pintarelli

May 10, 2022

CRO Spotlight

A B2B podcast for current and aspiring CROs, CEOs and other leaders. In each episode revenue experts Warren Zenna and Lupe Feld are joined by a guest as they set out to explore every last area of a business that you can leverage to generate revenue and drive meaningful change. Warren and Lupe speak your language - join their revenue crew.

Careers today typically to spring from one platform to the next in quick succession. But when we leap are we missing opportunities to deliver truly extraordinary results?

In this episode of the CRO Spotlight, Warren and Lupe are joined by Monique Pintarelli, CRO at Teads. Reflect with her on what a 20 year/3 company career has taught her about consistently delivering results, how to be job-ready for your career next-step, and the importance of community (especially in roles with a close to 9:1 gender ratio).


Connect with Monique, Warren and Lupe on LinkedIn.  

Help your team be job-ready by helping them become the best professional salespeople they can be. Find out more about the Create Pipeline course from Sales IQ here.

Warren Zenna
Co-Host @ CRO Spotlight Podcast + CEO @ CRO Collective
Lupe Feld
Co-Host, CRO Spotlight Podcast
Monique Pintarelli

[00:00:00] Warren Zenna: Hi and welcome to the CRO Spotlight podcast. I'm Warren Zenna from the CRO collective and I'm here with my co-host Lupe Feld. Hey Lupe.

[00:00:15] Lupe Feld: Hey Warren. This is Lupe Feld, and I'm glad to be here with you.

[00:00:19] Warren Zenna: So this podcast is really for aspiring CROs and CEOs and current CROs whom are interested in learning from not only us, but the great guests that we're going to have.

[00:00:28] Lupe Feld: We're here to tell you that there is other areas of the business that can drive revenue and we're going to look and inspect and come up with some great ideas for us to bring in as much revenue as we can, and drive some meaningful change for the business.

[00:00:41] Warren Zenna: So tune in, we have some exciting opportunities coming up for a really amazing conversations and any B2B leaders I think you're really going to enjoy it. So thanks for tuning in and we look forward to seeing you.

Welcome to the CRO Spotlight podcast. I'm really excited today. Hey Lupe, how you doing today?

[00:01:04] Lupe Feld: Good, I'm excited to have Monique on.

[00:01:06] Warren Zenna: Yes, same, same. So let's introduce our guests real excited to have Monique Pintarelli. She's the Chief Revenue Officer at Teads. Teads is actually a former vendor of mine. So when I was working at Havas I worked with Teads and they're an amazing company.

And she's tasked with overseeing the operations of the entire U S team, including sales, a creative strategy and customer experience insights, as well as marketing, since joining the business in October, 2018, Monique's been wide ranging and over the last three years, she re spelt. It's heeds entire west coast operation.

And she led her team to the fastest revenue growth across the company globally. And overall Teads west coast business grew 80% in 2021 and is 309% since Monique's arrivals really impressive and underpinning Teads growth. Monique has made significant achievements in three years. Growing revenue sources, maximizing strategic partnerships and recruiting and retaining talent prior to Teads.

Monique was a VP of sales at Viant. I know that company well, they were also a vendor of mine, a great company, great people there where she helped clients leverage data and technology to achieve marketing goals. She started her career at Turner broadcasting, where she spent 15 years in various roles.

TV and digital performance and marketing, CNN, TBS, and Turner sports. After working and live in New York city for 13 years, she resides in Los Angeles with her husband or two children. And it's great to have you here, Monique. Thank you so much for joining us today.

[00:02:26] Monique Pintarelli: Thank you so much, Warren. It's very nice to be here.

[00:02:29] Lupe Feld: Well, congratulations. What an incredible career path you've had. Phenomenal results. So I think our listeners are going to be really excited to hear some of your secrets to your success and the results that you've been able to deliver continuously. And I think that's the key there is that continuous ability to deliver results and and duplicate that.

[00:02:49] Warren Zenna: And we'll talk about that. Monique has a really good point. When you think about. The progression you made throughout your career. What are some of the things that you felt were consistent that you held fast to that got you to get the results that we just described?

[00:03:04] Monique Pintarelli: I mean, it's interesting because I've worked at 3 companies and my career now which is not many in the world of ad tech.

[00:03:12] Warren Zenna: That's true. That is, that is really amazing. Most of my friends have worked at like, you know, 10 or 12 companies or somewhat.

[00:03:18] Monique Pintarelli: Yeah. And I think that there's a lesson in there for sure. In terms of, you know, staying in a place long enough to understand how you can use. Impact on the business. I was, I was lucky enough to start my career at Turner broadcasting, where I spent 15, 15 years and worked coast to coast and across every single brand in that portfolio.

Turner is renowned for a great training program. It's a great place to start off in the industry. It's a great, it's a great place to learn everything about the business. And but I did reach a point where it was clear. That I'm getting a deeper knowledge and the technical part of where the industry was going was really important.

And so I made at the time was a very bold and challenging, probably the hardest move I've made in my career was the move from, from Turner broadcasting to Viant. And I think a lesson in there is, is just being willing to stretch. And in this. Particular situation. I actually took a step back in my career in terms of title and influence, but it was an opportunity to learn.

I think about that moment a lot in terms of where I am now in my career. And I think about Sheryl Sandberg. She has a, she has a chapter in her book, lean in that your career is not, it's not a ladder, it's a jungle gym and being willing to take some, some risk to learn and grow and stretch yourself.

And, and that move to Viant was, was one of those, those moments for me. I also had a great. Friend and mentor that I that, that I worked with for a long time, that helped me make that move and, and believed in me and my ability to learn the industry of, of ad tech. So many, many learnings and things along the way there I stayed at at Viant for four years where I entered.

Taking over the west coast business and operations rebuilt the team, rebuilt the business, left it in a really strong and beautiful place when I ultimately left to join Teads, which was about three and a half years ago.

[00:05:32] Warren Zenna: So it sounds like loyalty stability, consistency, because. I, I respect that I had a lot of jobs.

I've had probably more than I should have had. I get bored easily, which is why I prefer working for myself. But some of that's worked at companies for like 15 years. Working your way through an organization like that, especially big corporations and then working for tech. What, what was it that had you make that decision? Why did you move from a big corporate to a technology company? And what was that risk like?

[00:06:02] Monique Pintarelli: Yeah, it was like I said, it, it was the hardest. Thing I've done in my career. Even up until this point and moving into this role of CRO and that it was very humbling because I had to learn so much, but I could see what was happening in the industry.

My last role at Turner was focused on more of the performance marketing space. I was helping to guide some of the early stage programs. Efforts within the organization and it, there are so many benefits to working for a big company like Turner. I learned so much you're exposed to so much, but, but they don't move fast and to put it lightly.

So I was really excited about the opportunity to work for a smaller, more nimble organization where I could feel like I was really making a lot of. Direct impact on where we were going and how we could get there. And so yeah, I, I think there's a lot of benefit to having both experiences and your career.

And I would put, Teads kind of in the middle of those two experiences where. We're certainly not as big as a, a Warner media, but Teads is a global organization. We operate in 27 countries and we we're definitely larger in terms of size and scope and scale. And so the, the experiences in both of those places have really helped guide me in what I'm doing today.

[00:07:29] Lupe Feld: That's great. I think, you know, the diversity of the size and scope of the rural. I think it gets a kind of test pressure test, both ends of your, your experience. You know, one of the things that, you know, when Warren mentioned, you know, the results and the consistency, you know, what role do you think. Culture plays in your ability to drive continuous results.

You know, as we're kind of in the, you know, the current stage of kind of our work and economic environment, you know, things are tough right now, people are struggling to retain talent. And so you're kind of rebooting and restarting all the time. And so. One of the valuable things that kind of I've heard through your longevity was not just the ability for you to stay, but to have the consistency, to build and have engagement and culture through your team.

So I'd love to hear a little bit about that.

[00:08:24] Monique Pintarelli: Yes. I believe that that culture and a people first culture is everything. It's at the cornerstone of everything. It's what I think about when I wake up. And when I think about. When I'm going to bed at night, which is to make sure that we are recruiting and retaining top talent across the organization.

It's one of those things that everybody wants to do, but it's hard to do. And I think first of all strong talent. Attracts more strong talent and it becomes this sort of like fly hill of of culture building. So you want to make sure that with each hire that you're making that you're, that you're really thoughtful with who you're bringing into the organization, because each one of those hires can be multipliers for the types of, of talent and people that you can bring into the organization.

Also top talent are often. They have high expectations when you're bringing in really talented, strong, diverse people, you have to be willing to sort of leave your ego at the door. Be challenged, know that you're not always going to be the smartest person in the room, but that you know, your job is to bring out.

The strengths of everyone around you. And I'm constantly thinking about how to make the sum greater than the parts. And I mean, I, I think about my role a lot as kind of like a conductor in an orchestra where I have all these like amazingly talented musicians all around me and. Most of them are better at things than I am, but my job is to make sure that they're working together in harmony.

And we're creating some magic together across the business. So, yes, I mean, culture, it, it truly is at the cornerstone of everything that we do.

[00:10:22] Warren Zenna: Oh, that is an allergy so much. Yeah. Orchestra to think about that a lot. And I agree. Which kind of brings me to a question, which is the CRO role and that you're in right now.

I'm curious what your two things, one is what's your general view of a CRO role is and how the role is being implemented at the company that you're at right now. And like, what's the sort of, I guess, you know, operational functional organizational way in which the CRO role is being. You know, be utilized in your organization in comparative to like maybe even your own perception of what the role is. I'd be curious to hear about that.

[00:10:57] Monique Pintarelli: Yeah. So so Chief Revenue Officer I'm I'm obviously in charge of, of all things related to revenue generation, it is the CRO role in and of itself is, is a new one for the company which is an opportunity for me to sort of. Make it, as I see fit to find the success that I, that I'm, that I'm charged with finding.

But I am obviously in charge of all things, top line revenue focused, but also. I'm always working toward managing just overall EBITDA and profitability for the organization as well. One of the things that I think is really helping and my overall job and responsibilities and scope of work is is that I do have.

Site over a lot of the core functions of the business. And so that's everything from sales to strategy, to our customer experience team, to marketing, to the way we're approaching research and insights. And so. My responsibility is to make sure that we have all of these people, all of these processes, all of these functions working together in harmony to achieve all of the revenue and financial goals of the organization.

[00:12:18] Warren Zenna: Sure.

[00:12:18] Lupe Feld: You know, as I think about someone that might be thinking about, or in the process of interviewing for a chief revenue officer role you obviously have the perfect scenario. You have oversight of all of the different components and pieces as you were interviewing for the role. How did you determine that that was what the role was because a lot of times people see a chief revenue officer role and it's just literally a glorified sales. VP of sales, it really has no oversight or doesn't even touch the strategy piece or the marketing piece or the customer success piece. Did you ask some questions around that and what were those questions? I think that's something that's important in the success of a CRO.

[00:13:05] Monique Pintarelli: Yes, I did. It was important for me to feel like I could have A seat at the table and the influence over all of the core business functions that were needed in order to be successful. And the worst thing you can have within an organization is, is silos that, that have different.

Goals at the end of the day. And so one of the first things that I did and in this role is to sort of identify where the log jams were across the, across the organization. Prior to having a CRO role in place. We were operating very much as a business on a regional level, and there was a lot of value to that in some ways.

So we had a strong east coast team, Midwest team and west coast team. And I think the, the focus on, on strengthening the regional approach helped get our business to a certain level, but in order to take the business to the next level, We had to create a structure and processes where we were we're learning and from each other, we're sharing best practices and we're figuring out how to scale up and level up the business in the right way.

And that requires free flowing of information and collaboration. I assigned some. Some new people into the organization, promoted people into different roles that had more national scope and what their focus was, which was helpful. Now, none of this is possible if you don't have a really great partner in your CEO and I'm...

[00:14:45] Warren Zenna: I was going to ask you that question. That's exactly what I wanted to hear about. So thank you for saying so.

[00:14:50] Monique Pintarelli: Yes, a, a critical, and so, so my boss is the Global Co CEO of Teads. So he, his responsibility responsibilities across the Americas as well as heading up a lot of what we're doing from, from a tech and product standpoint as well.

And he's a great partner and was a great partner from day one in terms of scoping out what this role would be and helping me ensure that. We're setting things up for success from day one. So definitely an important part in the puzzle.

[00:15:24] Warren Zenna: So that's interesting. So it sounds to me like your CEO had a really clear and I'd say aligned understanding of the role as you did when you came on board.

Was there any disagreement in terms of the role or were you completely aligned? And there was very little disagreement. I'm curious what that was like.

[00:15:43] Monique Pintarelli: We definitely had some, a healthy debate. On, you know, some of the business functions like marketing, for example and whether or not it made sense for marketing to, to roll in.

So I wouldn't say we, you know, it was all harmonious from the very first, second, but definitely some good, good, healthy debate that ultimately landed us, I think, in, into the right structure.

[00:16:12] Warren Zenna: Good. A lot of the people I speak to there's a lot of discord and missing disagreement on what the role is, as said earlier, most of my clients have the issue where they're being hired to run sales. So it's a good thing that you're sort of been given kind of the keys as it were to the organization. So I'm curious then when you mentioned things like you did an assessment and you had to look where the leaks were.

I don't want, wanna get in the weeds too much. I'm just curious to know what your, what your process was for that. Like, what did you do? How did you undertake that analysis? And what types of things were you looking at?

[00:16:49] Monique Pintarelli: The process is definitely a combination of art and science and the science piece being, you know, I have a great partner.

On the finance side of the business a great partner on the business analytics side of the business. So making sure that we're, I have good, a good view into all of the data to understand you know, what's working and what's not from a numbers perspective. So. Where we went in, where are we losing?

What products are doing better than others, but regions, what categories all of those, you know, different data points that can help paint a picture of where we need to lean in more and where we need to make some changes. So there's, there's the science piece, which is very data-driven there's the art piece, which is really A lot of listening and just meeting with people across the team, hearing their perspective on what's working, what's not working what the business needs.

And my style in general is that I. I need to be in it myself, so I can really feel good about the decisions that we're making for the business. So I've just been spending a lot of time with a lot of people across the organization to make sure that we have the right, the right systems and processes in place and the right people in place across, across the teams.

[00:18:12] Lupe Feld: I was just gonna say it's not common to see a female CRO. And so maybe you could talk a little bit about your journey and how you were able to kind of navigate through the obstacles that you know are directly. In the way of a lot of women getting into that C-suite

[00:18:33] Monique Pintarelli: Yeah. I mean Warren told me to stop was only

[00:18:35] Warren Zenna: 11%, something like that. Again, it's crazy.

[00:18:38] Monique Pintarelli: Which is, which was wild for me to think about. Especially considering how many unbelievably talented women there are. So that feels like a big responsibility on a number of friends and a great challenge at the same time as well. I, you know, I think supporting. Women in general is a, is a passion of mine and business, but women in ad tech specifically, too, I think it is in, is an area where I think about quite often we're making great strides at Teads.

Specifically I can say we now. We just did a survey recently. We now have 54% of our leadership team is female and that's director and above, across our us business, which is really exciting. But to get to this place. So bay, it's a good question. I think it's a combination of a lot of, a lot of hard work.

A lot of sacrifice for sure. A lot of willingness to do jobs that maybe other people didn't want to do and take some risks along the way in that process. So a few examples of that for myself specifically, you know, getting promoted to VP and an organization like Turner is. You have a lot of people buying for the same roles.

I ultimately took a role in our direct response and performance marketing team, which was a totally different part of the business. And I had ever worked in before. And I was willing to do it because I, I wanted to grow in my career on all fronts. And that ended up being such a important. Move for me because it led the way to opening my eyes about programmatic and the role of of data and ROI based tactics for marketers.

And previous to that, it was, I was really focused on branding overall. And then the next move was just the willingness to take that job. At Viant, which again was kind of a step back in terms of title. I, I think you want to have good mentorship and sponsorship along the way. You want to have strong female partnership and men mentorship.

So I can tell you one of the core ways that I've continued to grow in my career is to surround myself with a lot of really. Talented, strong women because it's inspiring for, for me and, and we inspire each other and we challenge each other. We started a women's organization in LA. We call it media moms, and it's all.

Women who are moms that have big leadership type roles in the organization or in the industry. And we've helped each other a lot. We've helped each other get promoted. We've hired each other. We've supported each other through challenging times, but that that circle of networking and support has also been really critical in my career.

So. Well, a lot of hard work, sacrifice, willingness to do to do jobs that other people don't want to do, obviously. In addition to that, you have to show results. So and that, that comes from, you know, all of the things I said before in terms of hiring the right people and putting in the work and having the right strategies.

But when you show results, that also helps a lot too.

[00:22:11] Warren Zenna: Doesn't hurt.

[00:22:12] Monique Pintarelli: Does not hurt. No.

[00:22:14] Warren Zenna: So curious this organization, I mean, is there like, is it how formal. Is it just a kind of a loose collection or is there actually, like, I start like a website or a way other women can know about it is there is, there's a closed thing.

I mean, it sounds really like, it could be a great resource for women in the California area to, to get involved.

[00:22:30] Monique Pintarelli: It's pretty informal. At this point we've talked a lot about potentially formalizing it in, in the future, but for now it's been just kind of, it's almost like, you know, you hear leaders talk about their creating their board of directors.

Right. It's, it's kind of like that we serve as that for each other on, in terms of industry advice, career advice, we support each other through business as well, you know figuring out ways that we can support each other's business and the things that we do. So, yeah, it's pretty informal. Not something I could, you know, tell them about, but more it's more about encouraging.

I think. Women that are listening to, to create your own board of directors, your own sort of support system, where you surround yourself with powerful strong, successful women. And just by doing that alone, I think it helps propel your, your career forward.

[00:23:25] Warren Zenna: That's a good idea. I think it's a great idea to create local communities like that. Know, I'm curious about something. If you were talking, let's say there's. Aspiring CRO is listening to this right now, women in particular, who are in sales, leadership roles or enroll similar to the ones you've had before you became a CRO that are considering being part of that, turning it into like 15% or making it 20%.

Right? What are some things that you might say to them or offer them in terms of maybe ideas or guidance that would help them? Navigate that decision. So, and things that they could focus on to help them, it could be either in professional development, it could be things they should be thinking about should be things that you've learned along the way, you know, a general overview of. How would a aspiring CRO right now, approach making that leap from likely a sales leadership role like you had into a CRO role.

[00:24:22] Monique Pintarelli: So I think my, one of my biggest pieces of advice would be to understand the financials of how your company is working as much as possible. So. Looking at the macro level elements of the business and get to know your CFO, maybe, and understand how they're measuring success for the business and the deeper you can get into kind of data analysis and financial knowledge.

I think all of those skillsets help take you from. Simply kind of sales leadership into more of a CRO type role. Also just C suite communication skills in general is a good one. So understanding how to communicate your, your, your point of view concisely in a way that is heard from, from the C-suite who are typically moving.

Really fast. So you want to be able to help demonstrate that you have the ability to understand what's going on, synthesize it quickly and, and develop actionable plans quickly for them. And through that, just showing that you understand the macro, the big picture of the business, understanding the importance of connecting the dots of all the different elements of the business and pulling them together in a way that helps.

Propel the business forward, you know, that's your job as a CRO is really understanding what the business is about and then demonstrating how you can drive growth at the end of the day. And, and all the different components that, that pull into that.

[00:26:09] Lupe Feld: Or you make a great point because. You know, so often, you know, you wish that there was an internship to kind of get you ready for the role, but if you are aspiring to be a CRO, you have to show up ready.

And a lot of the times it includes areas of the business that may not be natural or you've had exposure to. And so unless you prepare yourself, you're really gonna put yourself at a deficit to show. And demonstrate that you are the candidate of choice. So I think that's great advice.

[00:26:40] Monique Pintarelli: Yeah. You know, you always hear, you need to do the job.

That you want to have, not just the job that you have right now. So there's a lot of opportunities I think, throughout your career where you have the opportunity to do that. And raise your hand for stretch assignments, be curious about what's going on with the business beyond just your, your, your current scope and through that process you learn and you also connect with different people across the organization.

Making a decision to hire a CRO, create a CRO role. And ultimately the decision on who will be that person is, is typically a decision made by many stakeholders within the organization. And that's a learning that I came, that I came to on the other side of this is all of the people that had. Into the decision for me to take on this role.

So I'm really proud of, of the work I've done across the organization in terms of collaborating across offices around the world across functions and you learn, you grow, you connect and it ultimately can help move your career forward to at the same time.

[00:27:54] Lupe Feld: That's a great point. I think, you know, as you look at the different areas of the business, I think everybody wants to feel like the CRO, moving into the position will one have an understanding of the role and to be a sponsor of their function. And, and so those relationships and that knowledge of. So, yeah, some great advice, some great advice. Thank you, Monique.

[00:28:18] Warren Zenna: And really good. I think we'll, we'll close it up. Another follow-up question is, so speaking to CEOs who are thinking about hiring a chief revenue officer for their company, right?

They're in the process of establishing, I don't know, at a point where they feel the company's reached a certain level of complexity or whatever the case may be, or maybe. And they're thinking about bringing on their first ever chief revenue officer, what are some things that you think a CEO would benefit from your experience in thinking about bringing one on and making that CRO succeed?

[00:28:46] Monique Pintarelli: Well, I think the benefit is that you have someone. Who is focused every day, all day on driving revenue and financial success across the organization. So I would imagine that that is something that most CEOs would find a lot of value in, in and of itself. So that is definitely my north star and everything that I'm doing.

And the only way that, that it works is with true partnership with the CEO. And you know, I shared some of my thoughts around that already, but working together to scope out the role properly, to make sure that you have influence across all of the key organization, all of the key functions within the organization, so that you can be set up for success from day one.

[00:29:36] Warren Zenna: Great. Well, great. You have another

[00:29:38] Lupe Feld: question Lupe?

Yeah, I was just going to say, you know, one of the things that I heard you say initially was that you had some healthy debate and, and I think, you know, I kind of want to double click on that a little bit because during an interview sometime.

People are on their best behavior. You know, they want to answer the question. They want to cry. They want to come across as, you know, the ideal candidate and they don't necessarily want to seem difficult, but I think it's, it's a missed opportunity. If you don't pressure test the flexibility, the openness of thinking.

Of the CEO. And I think you did that well from what you described. And so how did you manage that process? I guess it would be the, you know, maintaining it healthy and not tipping it over into combative or, or not keeping it too passive and not asking the question.

[00:30:24] Monique Pintarelli: Yeah. Well, one of the values of our organization is we operate with open.

So that's helpful because I have a boss, the CEO who it's a normal part of the way that we function as a leadership team in a business to have some healthy debate. And I think that that's where you, you create the right type of culture to actually win and succeed. But when you're in the process of, of interviewing or scoping out the role, if you're not asking those kinds of.

Provocative questions and challenging on some of those things. From the very beginning, you're missing an opportunity. You're missing an opportunity to shape what things can become. You're missing the opportunity to use your voice and make sure that your CEO is comfortable with the fact that like that's what your relationship is going to be like.

And never combated. And never disrespectful, always with the first and last lens of which, you know, the, the ideas are, are coming is always through what's best for the business. So never from a place of ego, right? Like a, it's not a power play. It's a. What is best for the business and the healthy functioning of the business, that's going to help us achieve what we collectively want achieve, which is, is success and growth for the business.

[00:31:53] Lupe Feld: That's great. I'm sure, you know, As you're, as you know, our listeners are thinking through this, or if they're going through the process, you know, I see kind of a a win-win opportunity because one, you get to understand the job and what you'll have the flexibility to do, but also, you know, the CEO and the candidate to get them validated. That the job listed is the job that you both want and the candidate that you do want. So I think that's great. So thank you for that.

[00:32:22] Monique Pintarelli: Yes.

[00:32:23] Warren Zenna: Great. Well that, that does it. I think we've covered everything here and this has been really amazing. You've really some great insights here. So thank you very much for being with us today, Monique.

[00:32:31] Monique Pintarelli: Well, it was, it was a lot of fun. Thank you guys for having me. Was it an opportunity for me to think, you know, I'm fairly new into this role. So it was an opportunity to sort of think and reflect and, and it was, it was helpful. So, so thank you

[00:32:48] Lupe Feld: Some great advice. So thank you so much for the time. Appreciate it.

[00:32:51] Monique Pintarelli: All right.

[00:32:51] Warren Zenna: Thank you so much.

[00:32:52] Monique Pintarelli: Take care. Bye-bye.

This episode was digitally transcribed.

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