When your sales ops teams work harmoniously in a well-integrated sales performance environment, clients are on the receiving end of extraordinary business outcomes. However, there are two factors which impact successfully executing sales operations strategy:
- Lack of Systematic Discipline
- Size of Organization
Let’s explore together, shall we?
Successfully executing sales operations strategy is a matter of consistency in process, discipline and trust: between the sales and sales ops teams.
In addition, within complex selling environments found in the industrial Internet of Things ecosystem, the concept of sales operations expands outside of the traditional, status quo definition. Otherwise, overall and individual sales performance are sporadic, unpredictable and unremarkable.
Lack of discipline can derail sales organizations with the best intentions. Here’s what happens when talking the talk meets walking the sales operations walk.
We’ve all experienced what happens when executing sales strategy starts to break down. As quarterly sales panic sets in, sellers and managers become obsessed with meeting quotas and KPI’s.
Sales teams are encouraged to loosen their grip on operational processes and discipline to “make their numbers” at all costs!
Consequently, sales people chase all sorts of unqualified leads and squander internal resources. As a result, the sales operations teams end up become reactive order-takers responding to widespread sales panic.
Everyone abandons remaining proactive, organized and innovative.
Company size often impacts sales performance, until an organization understands the value of successfully executing sales operations strategy.
First, smaller firms either are busy selling or doing. Their business models are an all-hands-on-deck affair, where everyone does a little bit of everything to get a project out the door. Sales activities tend to come to a grinding halt once a job comes in-house for execution. Then everyone’s time and attention are focused on design, development, manufacture, assembly and shipping.
However, once a small business begins to systematically execute on sales operations strategy, they develop in-house sales operations talent. Sales continue to happen, even while manufacturing begins on a won project. In addition, these companies begin to leverage valuable external partnerships with complementary small businesses and consultants. As a result, customer life cycle management and customer retention are positively impacted.
Then, medium size companies tend to have business models structured in functional silos. Departmental personnel become involved on an as-needed basis, throughout the business development and sales processes.
Medium size companies have the data and analytics bandwidth that smaller companies may lack. However, data resides in data kingdoms more fiercely defended than all those Game of Thrones story lines! But when sales operations is a highly-valued function, the sales ops teams poke holes in departmental silos. As a result, remarkable and enduring business outcomes are enjoyed by loyal and retained clients.
Finally, huge enterprises achieve wonders when they mindfully take the time to change. While these changes do not happen overnight, they result in an overhaul of mindset, business models and hiring practices. As a result, these organizations create holistic sales organizations leveraging a customer-centric sales operations strategy. Everyone is focused on delivering best-in-class, innovative outcomes.
Is your organization successfully executing sales operations strategy on behalf of your customers?
Babette Ten Haken is a catalyst. She writes, speaks, consults and coaches about how cross-functional sales operations team collaboration revolutionizes the industrial Internet of Things value chain for customer loyalty, customer success and customer retention. She connects the dots between leadership, human capital / HR strategy and developing a data-driven, team-based workforce committed to creating enduring business outcomes. Babette’s playbook of technical / non-technical collaboration hacks, Do YOU Mean Business? is available on Amazon. Image source: Fotolia