Growth Drivers for 2013

10 Proven Growth Drivers that Get Results!

At Evergreen, we help companies grow more, predictably. To enable greater and more predictable growth, our work with senior leaders, sales mangers, and sales reps focuses on:

  •  Making informed strategic choices about which growth opportunities to pursue,
  • Organizing resources effectively, and
  • Equipping sales managers and teams with the right processes and tools to sustain success

Over the last six weeks we have focused on 10 growth drivers we believe senior leaders, sales managers, and sales reps should focus on to drive growth in 2013. We have selected these 10 issues because they are actionable at all levels – the rep, team, and the organization. Moreover, they are proven, based on our experience with over 60 clients, to accelerate growth in a wide variety of industries.

Please follow us via email or RSS feed . And, if you have recently deployed, or plan to deploy, one of our 10 Drivers, please add a comment on the blog or Twitter at @EvergreenGrowth.

Our Top 10 Growth Drivers for 2013 Include:

  1. Growth Driver #1 – Confirm Your Revenue Model
  2. Growth Driver #2 – Increase Your Value
  3. Growth Driver #3 – Sell the Way Customers Buy
  4. Growth Driver #4 – Pursue a Mix of Revenue Gains and Drains
  5. Growth Driver #5 – Identify Growth Themes
  6. Growth Driver #6 – Create a Road Map to Success
  7. Growth Driver #7 – Tighten Your Focus on Sales Management
  8. Growth Driver #8 – Assess Your Turnover Risk
  9. Growth Driver #9 – Focus on Opportunity Creation
  10. Growth Driver #10 – Define Decisions at Customer Touchpoints Before Investing in BI Tools

-TGK


Growth Driver #10 – Define Decisions at Customer Touch Points Before Investing in BI Tools

Defining the key decisions and information requirements at all customer touch points is a critical prerequisite to investing in BI capability.

I recently co-hosted a webinar with Chris Winter, head of Enterprise Solutions at DOMO. Our discussion focused on Optimizing the Selling Machine. We talked about business intelligence, data, and decision making.

Since that webinar, I have had a number of conversations with Sales and Senior Leaders about business intelligence as it pertains to sales and marketing. And, there’s one theme that has been resonating louder than the rest.

Here is how the theme has emerged in conversation:

  • With our marketing lead generation, social media, CRM our ordering, customer service, and fulfillment systems, we have really great data.
  • Our data completely cover our customer relationships end-to-end.
  • We now know more about our customers and our interactions with them than ever before, it’s amazing!

BUT,

  • All this data has not lead to fundamental changes or improvements in how we sell or manage our sales efforts.

It turns out, that in all of these situations there were two fundamental gaps that had yet to be closed.

The first was the tools that enabled these managers to move from snap shots of data to trends and patterns of performance, and beyond to comparative analyses of multiple factors. We call this Business Intelligence.  The second, and most important gap was a set of fundamental links between business intelligence and  Sales and Management actions. In other words, the map tying information to actions and decisions across all of those customer touch points, action which in the end would lead to fundamental change.

Before you beef up your BI with a system from companies such as DOMO or Microstrategy, or deploy the next layer of Salesforce.com, take a step back and define the key decisions your reps, agents, account managers, and managers need to make across all customer touch points and nail down what intelligence would enable their ability to act faster or differently with greater effectiveness. And. remember there are a critical few measures that matter at every step. Failing to do so risks disabling decision making and impairing growth.

This makes the 10th and final Growth Driver, links to the previous nine are listed below:

  1. Growth Driver #1 – Confirm Your Revenue Model
  2. Growth Driver #2 – Increase Your Value
  3. Growth Driver #3 – Sell the Way Customers Buy
  4. Growth Driver #4 – Pursue a Mix of Revenue Gains and Drains
  5. Growth Driver #5 – Identify Growth Themes
  6. Growth Driver #6 – Create a Road Map to Success
  7. Growth Driver #7 – Tighten Your Focus on Sales Management
  8. Growth Driver #8 – Assess Your Turnover Risk
  9. Growth Driver #9 – Focus on Opportunity Creation

-TGK


Seven Metrics Sales Should Report, from the Field to the Board Room!

Do Your Metrics Enable Accurate Revenue Forecasting and Decision-Making?

As we head into the last third of the year and begin to experience another pullback in the economy, many Sales leaders are asking: Are we tracking the right metrics to gain visibility of future revenues and make critical decisions?

Unfortunately, in too many cases Sales Leaders’ metrics are flawed. They either track too many incoherent metrics, they track and report metrics inconsistently, or they do both.

Selecting Metrics

Luckily, it is relatively easy to solve this problem if you adopt the right principles on the way into discussions with your team.

First, it’s important to think about what metrics increase management’s ability to forecast revenue accurately over 30, 60, 90 days, and potentially beyond.

Second, it’s wise to utilize a small number of simple metrics, that everyone understands and the organization can track and report unfailingly.

Lastly, it is important to implement a set of metrics that enable tactical management conversations and decision-making up and down the management hierarchy, and between Sales and other departments upon which is dependent(such as Marketing and Customer Service).

The Critical Few

Our favorite metrics, which meet the above principles consistently across different types of business models, include:

  1. # of New Leads
  2. Conversion Rate of Leads into Proposals
  3. # and $ Value of: New, Renewal, and Penetration Opportunities by Stage in the Pipeline
  4. Sales Cycle Time by Stage in the Pipeline
  5. Conversion Rate of Opportunities by Stage in the Pipeline
  6. $ Revenue for New, Penetration, and Renewal Sales
  7. Total Cost of Sales/Total Gross Margin

Typically, these metrics would be tracked at various levels from corporate down to the sales territory. Similarly, they should be reported monthly and rolled up quarterly, semi-annually, and annually for trend assessments.

We find these metrics ideal because they provide the Sales Rep and the Board room with a complete and actionable picture of the Sales Model’s performance, including: the ability to forecast revenue accurately, early warning of changes in demand and rep performance issues, a sense of the company’s competitiveness in the market and the quality of customer relationships, and the overall efficiency of the sales force.

If you are working to refine, or have recently refined, your Sales metrics, we would like to hear from you. Please comment on this post, or send a Tweet.

-TGK