Members of the Ops community are always so willing to learn, share ideas and learn best practices, but where do you turn to achieve that? There is no degree in Sales Ops, or a Rev Ops book. We learn on the job, and we learn from talking to each other. The QuickFire Question series aims to harness that information, keep it safe so the brilliance that comes with the conversation is not forgotten, and to create a space to learn, form connections and share ideas.
Want to share your story? Get in touch with Emma (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Tom (email@example.com) to find out how you can be featured in QuickFireQuestions.
Here are some of the QuickFire Question Emma and Tom hosted recently.
Brian Schwartz with Tom Wallis
When you get alignment, suddenly you see better conversion rates, potentially shorter sales cycles”
Brian Schwartz, Sr Sales Operations Manager at NextRoll, talks marketing feedback loops and nailing alignment.
“If you’re putting the right leads infront of sales, they’re warmer, and actually an ICP fit.”
You’re saving your salespeople time because they’re not spending time disqualifying.
You create a feedback loop for marketing, to understand where success lies. You can adjust campaigns for what’s creating opps and revenue.
Extend your lense from marketing to customer success: consider how your decisions are affecting the entire customer journey.
Also, bring people from different revenue teams into the planning stages early.
For example, Brian brings sales leaders into the discussions for what MQL’s look like.
“Here’s what the new the model looks like for MQL’s, we would have passed this to you. Could you work this?”
Bringing everyone on board with planning creates alignment and a shared mission, and speeds up the customer journey!
Manuel Passanha Machado Soares with Emma Bryant
Within 5 minutes of chatting to Manuel, it became crystal clear why Rev Ops is such an exciting place to be!
As two people who love the world of start-ups, we quickly agreed on the benefits of working in a fast-paced, dynamic environment – we had an awesome session diving into the value of visibility and communication in Ops 🗣👀🗣👀
📌 When rolling out a new dashboard, it’s really important for Manuel to keep a constant stream of conversation around the latest developments so that the relevant party have exactly what they need each day 📌
It sounds to me like effective communication could be at the root of every successful team – do the community agree??
Rhys Williams with Tom Wallis
What would it look like if we broadened our view of forecasting, beyond sales?
I spoke to Rhys Williams, VP Rev Ops, Convercent
Rhys has 5 key pillars to achieve this:
1. Define your GTM strategy.
Who is the customer, what’s their journey? What’s your messaging, content? How are Ops managed and coached against?
This helps your forecast AGAINST something – establish a baseline.
2. Operational TAM and capacity planning:
Is your market big enough? How much market share will you need to achieve your number. If it’s large, is pillar 1 correct?
3. Pipeline composition, conversion and velocity.
Simply, how does this stuff flow through?
LET’S STOP THERE – the next phase is what people traditionally qualify as sales forecasting. As we’ve seen, forecasting can occur much earlier.
4. Traditional forecasting: in quarter + future sales forecasting.
Make sure you’re including pipeline forecasting – it’ll give you an indication of sales.
5. Strategic decisions and dependencies
This is where you bring in the ‘revenue mindset’ – how do teams from marketing to product influence what you’re going to forecast from a conversion and velocity standpoint.
Folks, forecasting can be more than Closed/Won!
Ella Pebbles with Emma Bryant
From what I’ve learnt, the Rev Ops team sit in this exciting and pivotal position of having an overview across the revenue function, while also being able to dive into the nitty gritty and get their hands dirty. So, according to Ella, this means you are having to orchestrate between all different systems and people – “you are the proverbial eyes on the prize”! 👀🎁
When it comes to coaching Sales teams, there’s no one way to coach and there’s no absolute right way of doing things.
🙌🏻 “They are an eclectic group of people. Understand who you’re talking to, know your audience. Tailor your objective.” 🙌🏻
The final takeaway that really stuck with me is that Rev Ops is about the balance of making individual lives easier, and doing what is best for the good of the company. Ella mentioned that this can make the interaction between the salespeople and the operations team more seamless because you are all on the same side, united by a common objective.
Evan Luke with Tom Wallis
“As a group, we need to get together and say, what exactly is success for Rev Ops?”
How do we provide and assess our impact?
Evan Luke Luke, Head Of Revenue Operations at VanillaSoft, looks at achieving this with masterful reporting
“When we’re talking about reporting, it’s gotta be simple”
“Ops people have analytical minds, they love data, but there’s a translational factor when communicating up to C level”
So, Ops folks are gatekeepers – between the analytics, and the wider organization
And simplicity ensures that information is listened to
What kinds of insights does Evan use to provide impact?
“Conversational Intelligence is a big one; do we understand what is happening once we’re speaking to a prospect? Their pain points? Is it the right person?
Those nuances become so important
How are reps performing throughout the process? What are the patterns? Is there a lot of discussion over price, for instance? Have we equipped them to provide value?
Understanding this allows you to align your customer-facing teams on the ICP and identify inefficiencies.
That’s the power of RevOps: you’re drawing from a variety of different business functions to improve your process as a whole.”
Evan, thanks for sharing your best practice with the #OpsCommunity.
Fides Nino Guilbert with Emma Bryant
When dealing with bigger deals, it often means that deadlines get pushed ⏰ and less opportunities actually cross the finish line 🏆
What’s more, these chunky deals make for a long sales cycle and it’s very difficult to get a pulse on an average!
During our session, we explored the sales process and, from an Ops perspective, the importance of really understanding exactly what is happening at each point…
We agreed – who doesn’t want revenue? 🤑
However, the job of the Sales Ops team is to recognise the length of the cycle and keep teams aligned at all times – taking into account the implementation phase, for example.
💯”We have to understand what the product is, the selling process, and then the implementation phase, and the time that the customer actually starts using the platform”💯
It’s about keeping everyone talking, particularly across regions.
Fides also went on to explain to me the importance of adapting to the needs of different regions. It seems there’s no such thing as “one size fits all” in this world!