Mostly metrics
Run the Numbers
E29: Building Sales Capacity: Bonfire VC’s Brett Queener on the Ratios Salesforce Used

E29: Building Sales Capacity: Bonfire VC’s Brett Queener on the Ratios Salesforce Used

In this episode, Bonfire VC partner Brett Queener, who was also the first sales ops and sales strategy person at Salesforce, shares insights on staffing ratios and building sales capacity. Brett unleashes his wisdom on driving alignment and setting sales quotas, forecasting revenue for new products, targeting existing customers vs. net new, the importance of sales enablement, expanding product offerings and TAM, the risks of predicting revenue for new products, long-term forecasting and investment, and avoiding an identity crisis. Supercharge financial operations with Maxio. Request a demo at for 10% off your first year.


SPONSORS: Maxio | Tropic | Thoropass

Maxio is the only billing and financial operations platform that was purpose built for B2B SaaS. They're helping SaaS finance teams automate billing and revenue recognition, manage collections and payments, and put together investor grade reporting packages. 🚀 Request a demo at for 10% off your first year.

Tropic is the next-generation Procurement Platform that’s helping modern CFOs take control of their budgets and bottom line. By combining approval workflows, supplier management, and pricing benchmarks all in one place, Tropic makes savings opportunities easy to find and act on. 🌴 Visit to learn how.

Thoropass provides complete compliance management, continuous monitoring, and security audits through intuitive software and expert guidance – allowing you to do business with confidence. Learn more:



Brett's resources and templates for founders, strategy, and CFOs:



@cjgustafson222 (CJ)

@bqueener (Brett)

@TurpentineMedia (Turpentine)



00:00 Introduction and Guest Welcome

00:19 Sales Strategy and Capacity Planning at Salesforce

00:39 The Evolution of On-Premise Companies

01:28 The Shift to Salesforce and the SAS Model

02:34 Building Your Own Army: Salesforce's Growth Strategy

02:50 Staffing Ratios and Sales Capacity

03:57 The Importance of Efficient Spending in Business

04:27 The Role of High Quality Developers and Account Executives

05:04 The Impact of Overfunding and Changing Goalposts

05:09 Understanding Business Economics and Balancing Growth

05:48 The Importance of Staffing Ratios in Sales Organizations

07:07 The Role of Salespeople in Business Growth

08:06 Understanding Business Segments and Hiring Perspectives

08:42 The Role of Marketing in Different Business Segments

09:32 The Importance of Understanding Your Business and Its Segments

11:47 The Role of Sales Capacity in Business Growth

13:55 The Importance of Forecasting in Business

15:28 The Role of Sales Rep Compensation in Business

18:52 Sponsor: Maxio | Tropic

20:12 The Role of Procurement in Business

21:15 Understanding the Ratio of Quota to OTE

25:21 The Importance of Growing Your Reps to Outrun Your Expenses

27:09 Understanding the Impact of Attrition in Business

30:19 Sponsor Break: Thoropass

30:52 Introducing a New Way of Doing InfoSec Audits

31:41 Exploring the Technical Side of the Business

32:26 Understanding the Importance of Developers and Salespeople

34:45 The Role of Product Management in a Tech Company

37:38 The Importance of a Strong Product Leader

41:41 The Challenges of Launching New Products

49:16 The Importance of Long-Term Forecasting

55:41 Understanding the Identity and Potential of Your Company

57:42 Closing Remarks and Contact Information

Mostly metrics
Run the Numbers
Run the Numbers is a twice-weekly podcast about financial metrics and business models, designed for ambitious people operating tech startups. It's a collection of things host CJ Gustafson (CFO at Partstech and writer of Mostly Metrics) has learned and thought about in the trenches as a tech CFO.
This show is meant to serve as a playbook of sorts for the stuff CJ wishes he knew earlier in his career, both from experience and from copying people smarter than himself.
Topics frequently touch upon Startup SaaS Metrics, Annual Budgeting, Financial Forecasting, Headcount, Equity, Dilution, and Fundraising – and how all of these drive business performance and growth.