In the rush to procure data and mine value, sales-operations leaders are often reduced to the role of tactical-reporting administrators. Executives can’t agree on what to measure. Directives are constantly altered and sales ops get sidetracked fulfilling ad-hoc requests for new reports, diverting attention from strategy development.
What drives this lack of focus?
There are two primary factors. First, executives often don’t know what they need. Sales-ops leaders and executives can decide which metrics are valuable by answering a few questions. Drilling down to the essential dynamics of the business should reveal only a handful of things executives need to keep tabs on.
What are the drivers of the business? How does the enterprise make money? What are the key performance indicators (KPI) that will show if the business is on track or not?
Second, leaders often don’t give much thought to reporting acquisition costs or what they intend to do with the information once it’s generated. But they can gauge requests by asking a few simple questions:
- Why do I need this?
- What strategies will it facilitate?
- What is the cost in terms of disruption and resources?
- How will I hold myself accountable for this information?
It’s fairly easy to make data requests and never think through the business case for the action. And executives are often shielded from any organizational disarray wrought from what they perceive as simple requests. The key is to apply a cost-benefit analysis (CBA) to report generation, just as the organization would with a technology investment.
By keeping requests simple, actionable, and justified, you’ll ensure the business remains aligned toward your objectives.
How to Slay Your Number in 2016
Are you going to make your number in 2016?
If you are not sure but would really like to know, turn to page 46 and read our feature titled “How to Make Your Number in 2016.” Here, we summarize the primary findings from SBI’s ninth-annual research project, which captures what the best of the best are doing to exceed their revenue targets.