GTM 62: The Revenue Viking Shares his Competitive Edge & Winning Culture Tactics with Mark Cranney (Revisited Bonus Episode)

Mark Cranney is an enterprise go-to-market operator and three-time unicorn creator. Most recently, he was the COO at Skydio. He’s also a founding operating partner at Andreessen Horowitz (a16z) and has been involved in the acquisitions of Opsware and Aster Data Systems by HP and Teradata, respectively. Mark specializes in developing winning playbooks, cultures, and strategies that put his competition on the back foot.

What You’ll Learn

  •  How to create a winning culture
  •  How to keep your competition at bay
  • How to hire talent that culturally fits your organization

Episode Highlights

(03:48) The books that shaped Mark’s winning culture

(10:39) How to keep your competition at bay

(14:10) Three questions to ask when scouting for culture-fit talent

(15:46) How to keep recruited talent motivated

(16:16) “Process triumphs heroics.” How Mark created and used playbooks to create winning cultures

(23:00) Why you need to get more granular in your competitive strategy

(35:17) How to create a winning culture without turning your team’s culture toxic.

(37:18) “If it’s not a competitive environment, for me, that’s toxic.”

(39:09) Mark’s parting advice


The winning general knows the outcome before the battle even starts.

You got to go where you can win, particularly when you don’t have a lot of arrows in your quiver. You’ve got to make sure you’re spending time in the right places, from a segmentation and targeting standpoint, until you build up the muscle where you can expand into other scenarios.

If it’s not a competitive environment, for me, that’s toxic.

If you have eight hours to chop down a tree, are you going to spend eight hours hacking away with a dull axe? Or are you going to spend seven of them sharpening the blade and an hour chopping the tree down?

If you take a shortcut, there’s always a consequence—and it’s usually not a good one.

Links & Resources

Mark Cranney’s LinkedIn:

The Hard Thing About Hard Things, a book by Ben Horowitz

What You Do Is Who You Are, a book by Ben Horowitz

The GTM Podcast

Don’t miss The GTM Podcast dropping every Tuesday discussing true stories and experiences including trials and tribulations in the Go-To-Market world.

And…monthly bonus podcast episodes dropping the first Thursday of every month.

Before helping found GTMfund, Scott spent 4 years at Outreach as Director of Strategic Engagement. He was in charge of aligning key relationships with VCs, BoDs, ecosystem partners and community members to drive revenue and strategic initiatives across Outreach. Scott initially ran revenue/partnerships for Sales Hacker (which was acquired by Outreach in 2018). Prior to Sales Hacker, he led and built outbound Business Development teams at Payfirma and MediaValet. Scott also advises for a number of high growth start-ups and is the host/author of The GTM Podcast and The GTM Newsletter. At GTMfund, Scott leads all fundraising efforts and runs the media arm of the firm. He’s also responsible for assessing investments, team management, LP/community relationships and GTM support for founders.

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