Rebounding after a Downturn: How to Restart and Move Forward

“Forget past mistakes. Forget failures. Forget everything except what you’re going to do now and do it.” – William Durant

During a downturn unemployment can rise and economic uncertainty can abound in both B2B and B2C arenas. Consumers and businesses will continue to spend, although what they consume will likely change. Businesses will make purchasing changes based on supply chain availability and selling changes based on necessity. In some instances, these changes can be temporary, but more than likely they will be further magnified as things start to pick back up again.

While an economic recovery will almost certainly happen slowly, your business needs to be poised for revenue growth ahead of time to quickly seize opportunities as they arise. So, how will your business capitalize when the economy starts swinging upward again?

Do you know how to move forward in a restart? Ask yourself these questions:

  • Do you know how to control your spending without thwarting growth?
  • What will you do to preserve essential customer relationships?
  • Are you equipped to find revenue in new ways?
  • Do you understand where new revenue opportunities exist?
  • Can you change your way of thinking to adapt?
Topics: Profitability Leadership Strategy Strategic Revenue Growth Planning Forecasting Revenue Development Action Plan Change Management

How to Transition from Remote Work to In-Person Sales

In 2020, B2B sales abruptly transitioned from a face-to-face game of relationship-building to a digital game that aimed to do the same. Sales representatives traded long drives and flights for their home offices as companies nationwide closed themselves off to non-essential personnel. Video conferencing and email became the new standard as processes and systems shifted. However, the need to develop and build relationships never faltered.

Now, as companies look toward the future, they need to make difficult decisions about when to move employees back into the office, while considering the needs of both their employees and their clients. The other big issue facing employers is the variety of protocols that will need to continue and be enhanced to bring people back in safely while accounting for the fact that not everyone is planning on getting the vaccine. Ultimately, control of COVID-19 and the rate of vaccination is going to affect the speed with which we return to the workplace.

The timeframe on this decision will be heavily influenced by industry segment. Companies that have an internal focus and can work in a bubble likely have not stopped going into the office, at least to some degree. For example, manufacturers never stopped going into the plant, instead they implemented strict protocols to keep their workforce safe and on the job. However, externally focused companies, like professional services firms, started going back into the office since the first of the year, but are not interacting with clients yet. Meeting with clients and partners is still being done virtually in these settings. Most other companies will likely be back by this fall, all things equal, but not in the same way as before.

Topics: Revenue Growth Profitability Profit Sales Leadership Networking Strategic Revenue Growth Action Plan B2B SMART Revenue CRO Chief Revenue Officer Revenue Generation Commissions Referrals Business Culture Professional Development Revenue Development Action Plan Change Management

Leveraging Top Revenue Drivers in a Post-Pandemic World

In a Harvard Business Review article on how the global economy is recovering in the wake of COVID-19 economists explain,

“In times of crisis it’s tempting to be pessimistic and fearful, in particular if the drivers are unfamiliar or the risks pose credible systemic threats. However, this inclination to pessimism and retreat also carries risks itself and we should remind ourselves that 14% of firms across all sectors typically grow both revenues and margins during downturns. This is not just idiosyncratic luck — i.e. being in the right sector and seeing a demand boost because of the nature of the crisis — it’s driven by a firm’s ability to see beyond the acute phase of a crisis and exploit its idiosyncrasies to drive differential growth in new areas. While monitoring the overall macro landscape remains important, leaders should not underestimate the importance of measuring, interpreting, and exploiting the dynamics of their own sectors and markets in order to be able to invest and flourish during the recovery and the post-crisis period.”

While organizations have already pivoted to withstand this year-long disruption, there is still work to be done. The goal now is to ride the growth curve as the economy swings upward up to avoid being left behind.

Topics: Revenue Growth Profit Strategic Revenue Growth Revenue Generation Business Development Revenue Development Action Plan

Surprise! New Leadership Challenges in the Workplace

Did you notice the traditional year-end business predictions for 2021 never happened at the end of 2020? This seasonal staple was thrown out the window, like many of our routine practices last year.

Everyone seemed more focused on making it through the year than trying to anticipate what might be coming next. (With everything that January threw at us, perhaps that was a wise decision!)

However, now that we are firmly into 2021, it seems a little safer to look forward. With that comes an increased focus on tackling difficult leadership challenges to move organizations forward.

To succeed in 2021, business leaders must steer teams away from an unhealthy focus on the past, reconcile employee desires with business needs, establish new revenue models, acquire new customers using different methods, and amend strategic planning initiatives.

Topics: Revenue Growth Leadership Strategy Strategic Revenue Growth Management Excellence Professional Development Revenue Development Action Plan

Who is the CRO? Finding a Chief Revenue Officer at Your Company

Does your company have a CRO?

If you answered “no” or “not yet” that likely means your organization simply does not have someone with the title of Chief Revenue Officer (CRO) right now. You see, asking whether you have a CRO is a trick question because even if a company does not have a formal CRO role, someone is acting in the capacity of a CRO.

Every for-profit company has someone overseeing sales and marketing functions at a high-level to control the overarching revenue strategy. So, let me rephrase: Who is the CRO at your company?

Topics: Revenue Growth Profitability Leadership Strategic Revenue Growth CRO Chief Revenue Officer Revenue Generation Revenue Development Action Plan

How to Make a Profitable Revenue Generation Plan

Executive leaders know there is always a push to generate more profitable revenue. However, the end of a fiscal year creates added pressure as companies strategize and plan for the coming year.

Your company’s success next year depends on the planning you are doing now.

So, what does your strategic revenue plan look like for next year? Ask yourself:

  • Where will revenue come from?
  • How will you prune your client base and modify offerings to increase profitability?
  • Can you trust your forecasts and existing sales processes, or do they need to be updated?
  • How will you encourage cross-functional efficiencies between sales and marketing?
  • Who will provide unbiased advice to leadership when big decisions must be made?

An effective revenue plan answers these questions and more.

Topics: Revenue Growth Profitability Profit Strategy Strategic Revenue Growth Revenue Generation Planning Revenue Development Action Plan

Is Your Revenue Strategy Antifragile?

Turning Market Disruptions into Strategic Growth

The pandemic has led us to ask many questions.

“Are we really more productive working from home?”

“If this is the future of work, how do we keep making sales and growing revenue?”

And mostly, “How are some businesses thriving right now when so many are struggling and failing? How are they turning barriers and disruptions into revenue growth, and how can we too?”

The answer is antifragility.

The conversation happening at most organizations right now is centered around pivoting strategy to make up for lost revenue in 2020. When this is the topic, the focus is on simply getting back to neutral – filling in the hole that the pandemic caused when it upset the market this year and hoping that next year will provide an easier opportunity for growth.

But what if these sweeping disruptions could be a catalyst for growth right now instead? What if the conversation were about how much your business could grow instead of whether it would survive?

Topics: Profitability Profit Leadership Strategic Revenue Growth Action Plan Revenue Generation Business Development Planning Revenue Development Action Plan Change Management

12 Principles for Describing Your Company’s Product or Service

Strategic revenue development is a function of assessing your company’s strengths and weaknesses; filling in the necessary gaps; and optimizing the alignment between core strengths, internal structures, people, products & services, and marketing strategy; followed by ongoing measurement and plan adjustments.

One of the 37 Foundational Questions (FQ) in our Revenue Development Action Plan, is:

“Describe what your company is in the business of:
Delivering… making… servicing… providing…”

In essence, we want to know there is clarity and alignment regarding products and services. In the B2B market, a sales team needs the support to ensure messages are aligned and services are delivered as promised. Though it may appear obvious, too often there are dozens of versions. Marketing takes the description one direction, sales another… and neither serve the customer well.

Every business owner and senior executive dreams about having a great company. And as an engineer, innovator, and business CEO Elon Musk said,

Great companies are built on great products.” (The same could be said about excellent services for service providers.)

Yet, there is something else that is essential to success, something that has a significant impact on revenue. That element is a great product or service description. A great product or service description is essential because every business must be able to articulate clearly and appealingly what it makes, delivers, services, or provides. Without that, how would a buyer find, understand, get excited about, or purchase what is being sold?

Topics: Brand Management Revenue Development Action Plan