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5/19/17 2:24 PM

EXCEED Illuminates Bright Future for Sales Operations

Members of our team recently attended Clari’s EXCEED conference, focused exclusively on the Sales Operations profession. It was a great opportunity to network with like-minded professionals, share experiences and understand how others have taken different approaches to solving challenges shared across the Sales Ops community.

On the opening night, we were treated to an inspiring fireside chat with three highly decorated female Olympic gold medalists who shared what drives their achievements, how to deal with adversity and overcome limits, as well as the importance of mentoring. It was a great stage-setter for the focused discussions to come the following day.

Throughout the conference, there were several topical keynotes and lecture highlights, as well as lively roundtable discussions. While there were many lessons to be learned, here are a some key takeaways we observed.


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5/18/17 11:47 AM

Take a Strategic Breather With This Sales Executive QBR Template

The sales Quarterly Business Review (QBR) is when each rep has to bare his or her soul. Exposing every weakness, however carefully hidden by the kids. Pink Floyd lyric? Anybody? Anywho, before the grilling begins, sales executives might consider subjecting themselves to an executive QBR. This is your chance to analyze how well your sales plan is playing out, and make needed adjustments. That was definitely not a lyric.

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5/15/17 2:35 PM

Sales Operations: Six Factors for Measuring Your Success

Sales Operations is a multi-faceted role that intersects many aspects of the business. It’s an incredibly broad position and you’ve probably had your hand in everything from developing pipeline metrics and sales forecasts, to implementing sales methodology and maintaining the weekly sales cadence, as well as working between Sales and Finance on budgets and planning. 

 

Then, there are the initiatives like delivering sales training and playbooks, rolling-out sales tools and technology, and configuring CRM. Finally, there’s the tactical day-to-day work like brokering peace treaties between Sales and Marketing, as well as providing analysis, analysis and more analysis.

 

So, the big question is, how do you quantify Sales Ops’ success? Keep reading for six factors to consider when measuring this.


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5/8/17 4:08 PM

Why Incorporating A Sales Club In Your Company’s Plan Will Pay Dividends

It’s now early May and for those who live in the Bay area, it finally feels like spring or perhaps that we have gone straight to summer. Either way  it’s a welcome change from the cold and rain  and for those on offset quarters, it may very well be the start of Q2. Recently, we’ve discussed Q1 best practices and what to accomplish in blogs and webinars; however, another event has now come and gone — Sales Club or President’s Club or 100% Club or whatever a company chooses to name it.

Yesterday, I was at lunch with some friends and we were talking about places we’ve been and nice hotels we’ve been lucky enough to stay at and some of those experiences were on “Club” trips. My friends, who are non-sales people, were amazed on how much a company may spend on Club between the hotels, airfare, meals, gifts and activities, which adds up to a healthy line item. But as I explained to them, if you think about how much revenue those Club attendees generated for the company, it becomes fairly obvious why it’s a wise investment. Here are a few topline reasons why.

 

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5/4/17 12:26 PM

A Sales Leader Playbook to Close Out the Quarter in Style

Before it’s 30 days from quarter end make sure to define your team's path to hit sales target. In the spirit of finishing the quarter in style, we created this End of Quarter Playbook to help sales leaders click into action as the quarter end draws near. Initiate your 4 actions for this playbook: identify your sales gap, categorize your pipeline deals, map your quarter climb and initiate rep close plans. 

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4/27/17 1:48 PM

Rise to The Occasion: Four Ways Sales Operations Can Serve as a Trusted Advisor

For the last 20 years I’ve reported to many different positions and departments. I’ve reported directly to the CEO, the CFO, the VP of Sales and the VP of Sales Operations. During that time, one of the constants is the role Sales Operations plays in being the steady voice of reason in the Sales and leadership dynamic.

Keep reading to learn four ways you can bring more value as a trusted advisor to your Sales Ops role.

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4/25/17 2:37 PM

Rock Your Next Board Meeting With This Sales Deck Template

A great board of directors gives the VP of Sales the strategic advice he or she needs to scale the company. But they can't do that if the Sales story isn't clear. We made this presentation template to enable Sales to better visualize and articulate its story so your Board presentation is sharp, on point and looking great.

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4/17/17 7:36 PM

Chart Your Sales Success with a Team Charter

You are asked to build or lead a Sales team to increase revenue or sale productivity. Now what?

As a start, you will need budget and people. Once you have these resources allocated, I am sure you will be tempted to create a plan that will address all the issues you are hearing from everyone that now knows you are leading this team. This approach may work in the short-term but will you be setting yourself up for success? Most likely not.

 

Instead your life will be reacting to the latest noise or complaints. You will also be at the mercy of your stakeholders preconceived perceptions of what you should be doing (e.g., send more sales meetings to the field) versus the objectives and goal you have been asked to drive (e.g., only create meetings for the field team for fully qualified prospects).

Instead of jumping straight into fire-fighting mode, I recommend that you create a strategic direction for yourself, your team and your company.

Here are the questions you need to answer to ensure you are in alignment with your sponsor and stakeholders:

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4/11/17 1:00 PM

The Q1 Sales Crunch Is Over, Now What?

 

Many of you have just completed the first quarter of your fiscal year. If you met your Q1 plan, congratulations! If you didn’t, can you catch up in Q2?


If you didn’t make your number, you are probably already doing a deep dive analysis to figure out what went wrong and what will turn things around. Whether you made it or not, it’s important to review what went well and what could be improved moving forward — from both pipeline management and sales resource planning perspectives.

Does this sound like your current reality? Read our five-step guide on how to glean valuable lessons from Q1 and increase your chances for success in future quarters. 

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4/6/17 1:30 PM

Three Ways to Elevate Sales Operations as A Strategic Sales Partner

Sometimes it may feel like the role of the Sales Ops organization is more of a rule maker than a true business partner. The Sales Operations team provides guidance and processes to ensure that a sales organization is running as efficiently and effectively as possible. Of course Sales Ops wants to see the sales organization be successful, with revenue being maximized and all commissions paid on time. But the functions of managing territory assignment, compensation planning, CRM monitoring and reporting on sales metrics may seem like a lot of process and overhead for account managers just trying to retire their quotas.


How can Sales Ops be viewed as a business partner rather than just another overhead function? Let’s put ourselves in the shoes of the Account Manager and see how to be more relevant within the sales organization. The three key actions outlined below are a good place to start.

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