The Revenue Engine

How to Turn Customers into Raging Fans with Udi Ledergor, CEO of Gong

March 9, 2021
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The Revenue Engine

Each week, Revenue Operations expert Rosalyn Santa Elena shines the spotlight on founders, CEOs, and Revenue Leaders from hyper-growth companies and dives deep into the strategies they implement to drive growth and share their learnings. Rosalyn brings you inspirational stories from revenue generators, innovators and disruptors, as well as Revenue Leaders in sales, marketing, and operations.

Why is it that some companies experience hyper growth while others don’t?

This week we get the opportunity to talk with Udi Ledergor, the CMO of Gong, who shares with us why being obsessed with your customer will accelerate growth.

Gong has achieved incredible results, and are consistently rated number 1 by their fan base. Thousands of companies don't just work with Gong, they have become raging fans.

During the episode, Rosalyn uncovers the secret to Gong's success, and how anyone trying to drive the Revenue Engine can achieve achieve the same success.

Timestamps

00.35 - Welcome to the Revenue Engine Podcast
01.32 - Introducing this week's guest Udi Ledergor CMO of Gong
02.52 - Udi talks about his career and when he decided to move to Gong
05.38 - Trends in the revenue intelligence category and why data analytics is key to drive more revenue
08.48 - How do you stay ahead and build a product that customers love
13.25 - The importance of customer feedback
17.00 - Turning customers into fans and how to connect your brand with the customer  
20.13 - Gong promotes during Superbowl and crazy ass ideas to help your brand  
23.15 - Why embracing diversity will help companies outperform...and doing it for the right reasons
27.00 - Gong’s operating principles and why turning customers into fans should be number one
32.53 - The one thing many people might not know about Udi

Connect with us:

Udi Ledergor

Rosalyn Santa Elena

Thank you to Sales IQ who help to power the Revenue Engine Podcast!  

Don't forget to subscribe to The Revenue Engine Podcast.

Udi Ledergor
I'm the CMO at Gong and a 5-time VP Marketing with 20 years of industry experience heading world-class marketing teams for public and private companies in B2B tech.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: Welcome to the revenue engine podcast. I'm your host, Rosalyn Santa Elena. And I am thrilled to bring you the most inspirational stories from revenue, generators, innovators, and disruptors

revenue leaders in sales, in marketing. And of course in operations. Together, we will unpack everything that optimizes and powers the revenue engine. Are you ready? Let's get to it.

When you think about companies with exceptional branding who comes to mind, what about when you think about creative marketing? One of the companies that is top of mind for me is gong and the mastermind behind the out of the box, thinking when it comes to marketing for gong.

Well, that's right. That's Udi Ledergor, gong is consistently rated number one by their fan base and all of the places that matter. And yes, we refer to them as fans more than as just customers, because gong is just cool. Right? It's a cool brand, a cool company. And a bunch of cool people. Hoody gave me a glimpse into how he thinks about marketing and how he and gong consistently stay several steps ahead of everyone else.

Want to learn more, take a listen and make sure to listen all the way to the end when UDI shares a few surprises about himself.

So excited today with Udi Ledergor, the Chief Marketing Officer of gong. Gong is the revenue intelligence platform leveraging. Artificial intelligence to transform revenue teams. Gong helps over 1600 leading innovative companies capture and understand every customer interaction with these insights, revenue teams are able to make data-driven decisions.

So welcome Udi. And thank you for joining me.

Udi Ledergor: So happy to be here.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: Thrilled to have you here. You know, when I'm thinking about the revenue engine podcast, and really thinking about the real revenue disruptors, who are not only accelerating revenue in new ways, but doing it with exceptional branding and creative marketing, you were top of mind for me as the mastermind behind using efforts of gong, I'm super excited to learn more.

Udi Ledergor: Awesome. Let's dive in.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: Let's dive in. So, I mean, you've had a really long and impressive career , leading marketing, right. At a number of different companies. And you've been at gong for the past four years. I'm sure the company has changed significantly right. From your first day to now. So can you share a little bit about sort of your career journey, you know, how it led you to gong and sort of what that journey is, looks like today.

Udi Ledergor: Sure. , so. I've built my fifth marketing team here at gong. It's the fifth time I've joined a company as its first marketer and build out a team and many of those teams. Landed quite quite some successes. I think a pivotal moment was , about 10 years ago, about 12 now I, I joined a company called back in Israel where I'm originally from and to join that company, which was at very early stages.

I needed to, take a hit on my job title. I , I had already completed two VP of marketing positions and to join Ponniah who just had a COO at the time, their first marketing hire, I needed to take a step down to senior director and , I was contemplating and I was at a stage in my career that I know a lot of people who are at that.

Well, I, I don't want to take a step down. I worked so hard to. Become VP or director or whatever title you have. Why should I take a step down? And when I chatted with a couple of mutual friends that I had with, with that COO that I was thinking of joining, they told me that I should absolutely do it.

And that he's known as an amazing mentor and I'll learn a lot about marketing and leadership from him. And that I should definitely take the. The hidden job title. So I took their advice. I joined that company. They were absolutely right. I did very well there. A couple of years later, I worked my way back up to VP of marketing and that CMOs name was, I mean, Bendel who was gone.

And fast forward 10 years or almost 10 years. Amit calls me about four and a half years ago and he said, Hey, you already remember that crazy idea. I told you about a month ago, we built the product. All of the beta customers have turned into paying customers. They don't want us to shut this off. So I think we better start doing some marketing.

Do you have some time to come help? And I answered, of course, what took you so long? I was doing, and I, I came and joined a meet and I meet as my CEO today. I joined as VP marketing four and a half years ago. And about two years ago, I was promoted to COO, which is my current position. So I guess there's a lesson there that some career path.

Moves take a long time to get the full benefit out of them, but trust your gut and try to put your ego aside and getting a great mentor along your career is one of the best things that'll boost your career up more than getting the right title on your first role. That's

Rosalyn Santa Elena: amazing. What did I had no idea?

I didn't know about that journey. That is an amazing story. I love that you know, gong has really defined and led revenue intelligence, right? The market category, you know, now more than ever every revenue team wide, they want, they need, they require the insights to really help them drive better outcomes.

Right. Win more deals, insights around the deal the customers and the market. So as the leader in the space, you know, what have you seen in terms, you know, in the market in terms of trends, you know, how has it evolved and where do you see it going?

Udi Ledergor: That's a great question. So I think when we, I started the company on about five years ago, you know, there were certain functions in business like marketing and finance that for many years, the bar has been pretty high as far as what is demanded of them in terms of analytics and reporting and dashboarding.

I've been in marketing for about 20 years now. So 20 years ago we did have Google analytics and all this fancy stuff. We, we made pretty websites and brochures and events. And we reported on things like brand equity and what great responses we got to a campaign. Today, if you don't know how to pull out reports on AB testing, your emails and landing pages and digital advertising, and all of that jazz, you're not going to keep a job for long.

And of course, finances, you know, the pit of me of having everything measurable, but sales have been allowed to continue for far too long without being held to that high bar of accountability like sales leaders. Most of them still don't know why they're losing most of the deals in the pipeline. They still don't know why Mary is selling better than John.

They still don't know which half of the committed deals in their forecast are not going to make it across the finish line. They just don't know. And we found that to be quite ridiculous because there are all these technologies that are now helping doctors. Analyze x-rays better than humans. And the stock market is mostly run by computers and AI and marketers.

We're no smarter than salespeople, but we've been using all these analytics for so many years. Why shouldn't salespeople have the benefit of the same technology and actually make their business decisions on which salespeople get to keep their job and get promoted and which don't make the cut what, what messaging actually works in our market, which competitor is getting stronger this quarter.

Why should they not have access to all this information? And that's, that's where gong. Came in and said, okay, enough of this nonsense, I mean, sales hasn't changed much since the middle ages. Let's roll out this amazing technology and see if it sticks. And it did. So as, as you mentioned, there are 1600 organizations today with many tens of thousands of salespeople using gong every day.

And I think we're, we're safely beyond the point of no return sales. Like there were before revenue intelligence and this category and gong are here to stay.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: Right. And, and we are one of those 1600 today at Clari. So we're a happy customer as well. That's great. Thank you. So just a few months ago, you announced the complete coaching solution.

Which is like with the impact of COVID and the global pandemic, right. Forcing sellers to sell remotely and sales leaders to coach virtually. Right. I think the timing could not be better. Right. I feel like it feels like gong is always a step ahead. Right. You're always a step ahead in terms of what customers really need.

So how do you. Stay ahead of the game, right? And ahead of what the market needs or wants, you know, what are some of the things that maybe you and the team are really doing right from this perspective, that really keeps gong ahead of the rest of.

Udi Ledergor: I think the two main things there, and there are no, no real secrets is one being obsessed about staying close to our customers and seeing how the user product, what never gets used, what isn't being used as much as you thought, what is being used a lot more than you envisioned?

We, we actually hit a few features that you needed like three click levels to get to. The customers were complaining that they're so useful that they want to bring them higher up in the menu hierarchy. So if, if you don't notice that you're making it difficult for your customers to use what they need and other features that maybe were more obvious on the screen, aren't used being used that much.

So we started folding them under other menus to make room for the more useful features that that's just a tactical example, but the point is. Staying super close to our customer, both in sales and customer success, but also our product teams, our product teams, despite them being physically and culturally distant way back in Israel, they're very close to our customers and every.

Major feature idea or a new module of the product gets extensively tested with a bunch of design partners and beta customers, which thankfully we have a waiting list for it. I mean, everybody wants the latest and greatest for gong. So we've never had a shortage of customers signing up for, for beta programs, but really just, you can see the product managers jumping on calls with them.

I mean, we have everything recorded ongoing, so of course. But you see how customers react to new features and you can see their excitement about certain things, and they're not so excitement about other things their indifference and, and that, that sends you a powerful message that I think some organizations still feel that they can ignore.

And they, you know, I think there's still people maybe with an engineering focus that still think that if they'll build it, then it will be used and they will come. Sometimes that's the case, but that's rarely the case because it takes most companies years to hit product market fit and really finish those iterative cycles of honing in on what the customers actually need from you.

If you're not obsessed about getting that feedback, Again, setting your ego aside. It's it? It's a common thread. I think in housing is operate because there could be someone, it could be the CEO, it could be the CTO, it could be a developer or a product manager. That's completely in love with a feature that they put out there.

But if customers hated or hate the way currently works. And you're obsessed about no, I know what's good for the market and they're going to love this. You're not going to succeed. So number one by far is just being obsessed with staying close to customers, responding very quickly to what they like and what they hate.

The second thing is. I think our CEO wants to put this as being positively discontent. And we put that into one of our eight operating principles and we call it want more, which means, you know, when we reach big milestones and achievements, we take a nanosecond to celebrate, but then we get back to work and we're never completely content with where we are.

We can make every feature better. We can make the product better. We can strive to better operational excellence in marketing and in sales and customer success and an R and D and in people, and in finance, everything we do can always be at least a little bit better. And so when everyone has that mindset, especially the leadership, and we drive that into the people that we hire and motivate a manage.

Then the organization gets at least 1% better every day. It might not sound like a lot, but after a year, like two or 300% better. And it makes a huge difference.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: I love that positively discontent. Love that phrase. Okay. We'll have to coin that. So that actually leads me right into, you know, sort of talking about your customer base because I mean, gong is consistently rated number one, right by G2, in a number of categories.

And I saw most recently rated.

Udi Ledergor: And trust pilot and every everywhere where there reviewed we are there.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: That's awesome, you know, and rated recently rated number one for the top 100, right. Best software products for this year. And I think recognition by G2, along with some of the other recognition that you've named is really the most authentic and real, right.

From my perspective, because this is recognition from your actual users, right? Your actual customers, and what better recognition than by the users themselves. Right. And you talked a little bit about the philosophy around need, obviously partnering with your customers, listening to your customers and really driving that partnership.

Is there anything maybe that you would add around, you know, how , as the CMO , how you leveraged sort of that customer feedback and the customer value to really help drive revenue acceleration, right? You talked a little bit about it in the product and pieces, but how else are you sort of leveraging that?

Udi Ledergor: Of course, but the first I want to give credit where credit is due and not claim any that I cannot the fact that our customers are raving fans and are gushing over the product. I, as a marketer can not take credit for that. That credit goes to the product team team. It goes to the customer success team who takes amazing care of our customers.

And they're the ones who. Turn our users into raving fans in the first place. Now that is an ideal starting point for building marketing programs around I, you can't fake that, right? If our customers hated the product, that was very little, I could do around customer advocacy and amplifying stories. And I've, you know, I haven't been to, I haven't worked for companies where customers hated the product, but I've definitely worked for companies where.

Customers were not as excited and gushing over the product as they are gone. So I know that marketing often gets a lot of the credit because you see our customer advocacy programs out there and people assume that everything that happens on social media or on our website or at our events comes from marketing.

But, but the truth is that I I've just got this ideal starting point of customers who really love the product and the service that they're getting. So everything becomes infinitely easier from there. Having said that. Having these wonderful, wonderful raving fans does give you a lot of creative ground to play on in marketing.

So one thing that we're doing is creating a ton of customer stories because any sales person will tell you that. The one thing they need for marketing after leads to help them is a case study. We need a case study for this segment in this geography, in this use case in this buyer persona. And for some companies it's hard to get those, but again, because we build this amazing fan base, not a user base, but a fan base.

They are lining up to, to share their experiences with, with gong, except some of the very big ones that their corporate policy forbids them from doing so but we're, we're even finding creative ways of getting around those. So so one thing we did, you know, last year it was difficult when we all went shifted to remote, we had to reinvent, how do we create a customer story?

Because we were used to sending a filming crew and plan this weeks ahead and get high quality footage and then edit it for a few weeks. It could take months to build a good customer story. But like many things I think in business that came out of the very. Bad and challenging year that we all had last year.

One of the good things that came out is we actually learned how to streamline these things in a virtual world and putting together a simple zoom interview with some better quality B roll and animation. Suddenly you can create a good customer story in, in a week that used to take you months to put together.

And last year we rolled out I think, 34 new customer stories, which is. Our best year ever. And that's when we were all working remote. So I wouldn't have thought that we could do that. And, and just to finish the answer to your question on how we use those customer stories, I think our customers will always be better marketers than my team will ever be for our product.

So whenever we can bring customers and put them at the foreground of our. Virtual events, our webinars, our blog posts are anything that we're doing our social media. We put them in the front and they, they speak volumes more than we could ever about our own product.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: That is just amazing. Aside from the product and the customer focus, you know, gong has an amazing brand, right?

You talked about having all the fans. So, you know, as a customer myself , looking in from the outside while , gong is just cool, right? I mean, that's kind of, it, it's a cool brand. It's a cool company and a bunch of cool people. Right. And that's kind of from the outside looking in, but I feel like it seemed to always take a path.

Right. And I was talking to you about this a little earlier, before we started recording that , it's team to take a path that others might not even think about. Right. I've heard you say that. You're always looking for ways to cut through the noise. Right. Which I think everybody's looking for, you know, your partnership with rapid fire and Kiwi bot, I thought was a great example.

Right? Autonomous bots delivery. I mean, it's so different. Right. And as the CMO, like, how do you think about. Brand at gong, you know, what's your approach to marketing because it just seems so out of the box, thinking something different people would never expect, but it's just like, when you see it, you're like that's so gong.

Udi Ledergor: Glad it's working.

That's the first feedback I think. You know what a lot of marketers do and it's okay. You know, I've done this earlier in my career, but, but you've got to break out of it at some point is to just look at what your competitors or other companies in your space are doing and, and sort of do the average of all of that.

If, if you do the ordinary stuff, you're going to get the ordinary results. You're you're not going to cut through any sort of noise. If you're copying your competitors website. Or messaging or product shout outs to many of our competitors. You're, you're not gonna look better or bigger than them.

You're just going to look like a very pale version of what they're already doing. And by the time you finish copying something, they're already onto their next thing. So, you know, it might come to a surprise to some of our competitors why they're not as successful. And, and according to our data were at least five times bigger than any competitor in our space.

Because they, they seem to be doing a pretty good job of copying our website and our product and our, but they're never getting even close to achieving our success. That's because by the time they finishing, they finish copying, what's currently out there. We're already two steps ahead doing the next thing.

And so we're taking a very different approach and we do this in product and we do this in marketing. So in marketing, you know, where I look for inspiration is not. What are other B2B, SAS companies selling to sales teams doing? Honestly, very, very few of our campaigns have gotten any inspiration from that space.

Inspiration that I get is what, what is Doritos doing? What is Disney doing? What are, what is Oreo doing? What's Wendy doing that? That's where we get our inspiration and there there's a theme there. So. First, I think the world is much bigger than our tiny little space under our flashlight that most of us tend to live in the world is much bigger than sales tech.

And there's some great marketing out there being done by food companies and beverages. And just look at the channels that they're using and the medium that they're using in the last year alone. We've done things that very, very few B to B companies and none in our space have ever. Started doing we've done out of home in very creative ways from taking over the Montgomery station in San Francisco to wrapping 20 cars with rapid fine to doing Kiwi bots food delivery robots.

We did a super bowl commercial. Okay.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: So I was just going to say, are you going to talk about the Superbowl commercial

Udi Ledergor: Sales tech company? Did a super bowl commercial? Yes.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: No, I was gonna say same. I, when I saw that, I was like, wow, I need to see this commercial

Udi Ledergor: Crazyi dea that I'm looking into now, but my team would kill me because some of them will never see the light of day and some will never want to keep it as a surprise.

But. I'm looking at what crazy ass idea I could pull next that is not being done. I mean, what's the fun of doing what everyone else is doing. So I guess that's embedded in my approach of just, and I've said this in the past, I didn't make up this, this motto, but I definitely live by it, which is, I feel that different is better than better.

I'm not just trying to be a little bit better than everyone else. I'm trying to be completely different. And then by definition, I'm leading at whatever I'm doing. If no one else is doing it, That's right.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: Yep. Yeah. It definitely shows in your marketing for sure. I can tell you from looking as a customer and as a user from the outside, it's definitely working.

Udi Ledergor: I mean, today one of our, our customer marketer on my team Trish, she, she posted a beautiful cameo video that we created. For one of our raving fans at Amazon's for business. She, she wants mentioned that she liked chili and the office, someone like the customer success manager heard that on a call completely made in passing.

And then a couple of weeks later, she wakes up to see the actor who plays Kevin on the office, giving her a personalized video message on Gong's official LinkedIn page. And there's also a chili kit already mailed on its way to her home. Like she totally freaked out in the best way possible. And you know, we reached out to our rep who's, who's managing the relationship to tell them how we made her.

She, I quote you made my week, month and year. And her friends are sharing it and she's also excited and she didn't even realize how we knew that, that she's a big office fan and that she loves chili. But now she's got her chili order on the way and took up Kevin from the office, shouting her out on.

On LinkedIn. So what a better way to start your day? And like, I don't know why more companies don't don't do it. And when everyone starts doing it, what we'll be doing something else.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: Yeah. You'll be onto the next big thing.

Udi Ledergor: It's just a really easy way to, to, you know, show some love back to your, to your customers.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: Yep. I love it. Love it. You're also a huge, huge champion of diversity inclusion, right? I've seen, you've shared pictures of your beautiful family on LinkedIn. I love that. And you've also given us a glimpse into your amazing musical talent. I think that's going to be my second time. I'm going to be requesting from you.

If I can just get a piece of you. Playing. And that will be half of our podcast as well, but I'll, I'll get to that ask later, but , I really love how you bring your whole self to work right into everything that you do. And I think that, you know, part of Gong's amazing brand is also you right. Sort of leading the charge personally.

So can you talk a little bit about how you think about personal brand and how it helps really boost the company brand?

Udi Ledergor: Sure. So yeah, there's a lot to unpack there. So let me, let me touch on a few points and then you can direct me with your questions first. I think, you know, there's so much data out of McKinsey reports and, and other organizations reports showing that organizations that embrace diversity, equity and inclusion into their.

Operating principles and not only talk the talk, but walk the walk. They outperform organizations to don't. So even if you're a. Cynical bastard that doesn't believe in doing the right thing. At least look at the data that shows that it's the right thing to do for business. Right? So organizations with women on their boards have more profits than organizations that don't have women on their boards and organizations that encourage their employees to bring their full selves to work.

Whether they're a white male. Person straight person, or whether there are any sort of underrepresented group from an ethical minority or women or LGBTs or anything else. If those people feel not only tolerated, but celebrated at work, they will bring their full selves. They will do like. Probably 30% more at work.

Why would you not want to create that sort of environment to, to, to make that happen? So I had gone w we're a big believer of doing those things because they're the right thing. And too, because it's also good for business. I have been openly gay for many, many years and in the recent years as I've been an executive.

Roles. I I've seen the power that the role provides me and I want to use it in a responsible way. So I think by a. Affecting some of the policies of the company, not that this was ever an uphill battle had gone because our founders and the, the entire C-suite are so pro diverse diversity inclusion that I didn't have to do much pushing there just to, you know, make a few points of things that I'd like to focus on and, and how to cater them for different underrepresented groups, especially those that I'm a member of.

But Using my power as an executive to be a role model for what, what someone from the LGBT community can, can achieve and how our company wants to be more inclusive and become more diverse with people from that and other underrepresented communities. I, I think has, has paid off well for, for gong and for me, I mean I know that I've helped some people from my community joined the company and they knew that they would be comfortable and welcome seeing how sort of I'm part of the face of gong in, in my social media.

So so those are some, some of the efforts that we're that we're making there.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: That's great. Thank you for doing what you do. I'm a big admirer, as you know, I'm a big fan girl of you. So why don't we pivot back a little bit to revenue? Right. So if I think about the revenue engine and this podcast , I, I really hope that others will be able to learn right.

How to accelerate revenue growth and how to really power that revenue engine. You've talked a lot about , really great marketing tips, branding tips, thinking out of the box, different things. And so from your perspective , are there other key elements that maybe you think have really contributed to the high growth that gong has experienced?

You touched on the customer aspect, right? Obviously listening to your users, the product you've touched on probably the biggest ones, but are there other things that maybe we didn't cover?

Udi Ledergor: Sure. So first, you know, on our website gong, dyo, there's the full list of eight operating principles, which are pretty much the recipe book for our success.

And there are probably other ways of achieving it as well. But if I had to focus on two or three things, I'd say one, the most important thing is that everything that we do. Is aimed at creating raving fans. So it starts with creating a product that customers are talking about is that the, as if it were a piece of jewelry or, or a, an iPhone or something, you know, for personal views they don't talk about.

Other B2B products that way, but just go read the language on G2 and on our website, we've dedicated a whole page to customer love on our website because it's like, you know, Valentine's all year round for our customer. So, so create that raving fan experience in everything that you do in the product, in the service, in the sales process, we create a raving fan candidate experience.

When, when someone interviews for gong, even if they don't get an offer or get an offer and decline. We want them to have a raving fan experience. That's a very high bar. Like how often you see companies focusing on that yet, if you go to our glass door profile, you will read raving fan reviews from candidates who did not get an offer.

They still felt so compelled to go write a review. What a wonderful candidate experience they have and recommend going to their other friends who might. Get an offer from us or who might accept an offer. That's a really high bar for raving fans. It's not just talking the talk, it's walking the walk.

It's like, how do we make this an amazing experience for candidates? And I, I won't give away all the secrets, but just think about every tiny detail of the candidate experience, like who they're going to meet in what sequence, how are we going to keep them engaged between meetings? What happens when you have to reschedule a meeting?

What do you send them? Before sending them an offer of what do they get if they can come into the office, like thinking about every step of the way and creating a rating fan experience. So that, that is number one. Number two is obviously the people and their specific order. Number one, number two, because you've got to get the right people to create the right experience, but never compromising on the people.

That's really the, the second thing. And it starts with. The leaders who are then going to hire the rest of the team, but every person matters. Every person, you know, one. One bad encounter with a customer can lose you a huge account and cost you a big chunk of your reputation. One careless engineer can, can cause a security breach that could kill a company.

You cannot compromise on the people. There's nothing you should invest in more than the people. So, so having the right people who are passionate about what we're doing, who can work together as a team who can leave the ego out of the zoom room for most of the day. And really aligned together. And, you know, I think no alignment is more important than the sales and marketing alignment, which we have.

Really, really good alignment that gong that's a big, big part of our success. If you can get those leaders to respect each other, to share their challenges, to ask for help and to work together and show up in a unified front in front of management in front of the company, not pointing fingers, making excuses and blaming the other, the other team.

Then, then you'll have succeeded by just working together as a team with the right people.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: That's great. That is great advice. Is there something that maybe you wish you knew earlier in your career? Like maybe something that you would have done, maybe you would do differently if you had a chance to do it all over again?

Udi Ledergor: You know, people say this all the time hire people that are smarter and better at than you, and they'll make you look good. I think it took me a while to, to be convinced of that. It took me a while to be convinced of that. And that's definitely something that I, I probably should have done earlier in my career because I think most first time.

Or junior managers like all of us, we, we have ego issues. And so when you're a junior manager you're already experiencing likely experiencing imposter syndrome and wondering how you ended up in this position. And it's just a matter of time before they figure it out that they made a mistake by promoting you to a manager, like why on earth would I bring someone smarter than me on my team who would make me look so incompetent?

But that's not the right way to think about it because. Your role, as soon as you become a manager, your role is no longer to be the best individual contributor it's to. Hire and manage and motivate the best team that you can and accomplish more that way. And the sooner you really, really understand that, then you start bringing people that are better at you, or if it's easier for some of us to see this way, they don't have to be better than you, but they have to compliment you in areas that are not your strengths.

Okay. I'll be the first to admit amongst all the marketing. Domains out there. I am a demand gen person at heart. I've also done brand and creative. I've also done product marketing. I've done customer marketing. Those are not my strength in marketing. I know what good is when I see it, but I've hired people that are way better at me at doing all those things.

And, and that's how I succeed as a team. So I've kept the lights on until I could afford to bring those people. But as soon as I could, I brought people that are one or two calibers above my size in product marketing and, and creative and brand management. And they make me and gong look good because they do stuff that I could not do myself.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: Well, that's great advice. That's really great advice. Thank you. So thank you so much for joining me. But as we wrap up and before I let you go, right, I always like to ask two things. One is what is the one thing about UDI that others would be surprised to learn? And this one might be a little tough because you're pretty, you know, you're you wear your heart on your sleeve and you're, you're very transparent out there.

So that's one. And the other thing is. What is the one thing that you want everyone to know about you?

Udi Ledergor: What do people do not know? Well, some of my team members know this and, and make it annoyingly obvious. Many, many years ago I used to dabble in magic. So I was. Amateur magician for, for quite a few years during my childhood and teen years. And, and what they love pointing out is my stage name at the time.

So given my name is UDI, of course my stage name had to be.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: That's great.

Udi Ledergor: That, that is a fun fact, that few people at this point know, but now I guess, what do I want everyone to know? I guess it's that we're hiring, you are hiring as gong.io/careers. We're hiring in San Francisco, in Atlanta, in remote positions and soon in other countries.

So stay tuned for that. And yeah, the best way to connect with me is on LinkedIn. There's only one UDI letter board there. Well, maybe I'll end with that as another final fun fact for you. So there's a reason why I'm the only duty letter Gore. UDI is actually very common Israeli name. I know many duties, but the only other letter board you'll find on LinkedIn is my husband.

And the reason is that we made up that last name. So we are the only Nevermore family in the world. When we got married 11 or 12 years ago, we took my. Ridiculously long and hard to pronounce Jewish name and his, and we took the first half of mine in the last half of his and combine them into letter Gore.

And that's how we created our family name. And so we're, we're the first. Leonard Gore family and making it, making it very easy, easy to find a song.

Rosalyn Santa Elena: Oh, I love that story. That's a, th that's definitely, you gave me two surprises, so appreciate that. That's great. Thank you so much for joining me. This was fantastic.

I love just sharing your story and really appreciate your time.

Udi Ledergor: Thanks for having me really enjoyed it.

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