Business owners don’t want much--we just want more. We want more speed, more accuracy, more productivity, more information (not to be confused with data), and more sales.
In sales, there are some essential elements, that when correctly wired into a system, have propelled dramatic impact on conversion, rate of revenue, and valuation.
In no particular order, here are 14 of the most critical elements, without which, a fully productive revenue engine isn’t possible:
Know what you are trying to control. If it’s revenue, it can’t be done. You might as well try controlling the weather. However, we can impact revenue by controlling the behaviors and activities that lead to a decision. Activity is your business’ primary currency, not money.
Make sure your company’s value proposition is presented with clarity and consistency. Are your sales and service executives operating with a clearly defined and measured process? Everyone must go to market with the same, for lack of a better word, “script.” In almost every instance, I’ve found that individuals tend to put their own bit of spin or style into their presentation. Ultimately, you might find the differences in performance relate back to this issue.
Are your tipping points in the deal cycle clearly defined? Is the behavior moving the deal flow consistent and optimized? Do you have the ability to make that determination? Surface opportunities to compress, enhance or modify these tipping points in the interest of accelerating the time to close.
How are you and your employees speaking about the steps in the process? Have a definitive language to help ensure the desired behavior occurs. Vocabulary should provide actionable insights. During our careers, we encounter words like “qualified," “determined,” “allocated," etc. Consider the best vocabulary to drive real results.
This is huge. This is the elimination of any language that is subjective, or lends itself to interpretation.
Hold people accountable quantitatively to adhere to the processes that have been established. Set expectations so everyone knows who they are being held accountable to. Being held accountable only to a revenue goal is after the fact and it’s reactive.
The behavior and results of that behavior must be transparent to your employee and the collective group. This creates a ubiquitously available snapshot for the company.
Make your comp plan(s) correctly structured and compelling to people to give that extra push. Have a system in place to determine how it can be tweaked to better serve the end game in some way, other than anecdotal means.
This one is huge. You and the other individuals in the food chain need to be curious enough about the business to explore the answers and the questions. If a sales platform is correctly designed, you should be able to ask questions without caring whether or not there is value in the answer. It should place no demand on resources.
This might seem obvious, but know what you’re analyzing and track those metrics.
Again, obvious on the surface, but goes a bit deeper than you might expect. Doing what should be done, when it should be done, is only part of it. It’s critical to establish proactive quantitative determination of the compliance levels collectively and individually.
There shouldn’t be any tolerance. By that I mean, anything other than a “zero-tolerance” culture for non-compliance will nuke the system. It is cancer at its worst.
Culture sticks. If everyone gets tired and frustrated, it will unravel. That is toxic. If, on the other hand, adoption is driven by benefit from the system at every level, the adoption will be positive. Then you will end up with sustainable, long-term cultural traction.
If I were to look at these elements as making up a "Periodic Table of Revenue," data is the "carbon" in the mix. It is the core building block that makes it all work. It is the building block of the “organic matter” of revenue.
Learn more about these and other elements and strategies for growing your company revenue with the upcoming event, Revenue Acceleration & Salesforce.com.
Larry Nipon has consistently helped companies exceed expectations. As one of the earliest adopters of CRM technology (ACT!’s 1st beta tester), he’s created a new and different set of rules showing how to correctly and effectively marry a company’s revenue strategy to the technology to make it happen. Larry used these strategies to start and build “category-killer” companies whose growth led to acquisitions or investments by the likes of Google, Accenture, Fidelity Partners, EMAP PLC., and others.
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