This post is an excerpt from the Ambition Guide to Predictable Revenue.
So you’re the CSO of a growing company that is looking to build out a sales force. You take a look around and think to yourself: 1) What is my strategy? 2) How do I implement that strategy?
I have two pieces of advice for those of you in that situation. For Step 1, read Aaron Ross’s 2010 book, Predictable Revenue. For Step 2, implement Ambition into your company’s daily sales process.
Implementing Predictable Revenue
For the uninitiated: Aaron Ross is the renowned sales guru who first helped propel Salesforce.com to success--as a failed entrepreneur and struggling sales rep with SalesForce.com, Ross initially spent years toiling with outdated sales techniques before creating his own methodology.
The result was a boom in Salesforce.com of over $100 million in sales in the span of a few years. I’ll spare you an in-depth, comprehensive breakdown of the Predictable Revenue strategies and tactics (I was never very good at writing book reports anyways) and get down to the overarching principle of Ross’s text.
That is, how to incorporate the three pillars of Predictable Revenue to turn a people-run business into a sales machine.
The Three Pillars of a Sustainable Sales Machine
There are three essential pillars of creating a Predictable Revenue sales machine: (1) predictable success and ROI, (2) self-managing systems, and (3) sustainability. Let’s look at each individually.
Ross credits creating “a simple sales prospecting process that was highly effective, repeatable and predictable” as a key pillar in ramping up sales. The key words here are simple, repeatable, and predictable. You want to give your sales team clear marching orders. You want to avoid unnecessary complexity and confusion.
Moreover, you want to create a machine that runs on its own, and that means something that can repeat its successes and drive predictable revenue for your company on a daily basis
To achieve the latter objective, we turn to Pillar 2: creating “systems that self-manage” so employees grow and succeed even when management is not able to oversee and coach each rep individually.
In other words, a machine that runs smoothly and effectively with minimal oversight even as new personnel are added to it.
The final objective: to create a machine that is designed “to succeed over the long-term, independent of who is managing it, so [...] it will continue growing.”
You want a sustainable model that requires minimal maintenance and overhaul. The most lucrative money in sales comes from long-term processes and relationship-building, so you want a machine built for the long-term.
So all that sounds easy enough on paper, but as every business owner knows (and as many of us at Ambition have learned the hard way) the real challenges lie in the implementation of these principles in the actually business itself.
Businesses are, after all, comprised of people, who are by nature imperfect, inconsistent, and not always motivated. Ross is asking that you, an inherently imperfect person yourself, figure out a way to turn a group of inherently flawed individuals into a team of sales superhumans.
In this sense, becoming a predictable revenue company is akin to saying: “I’m going to lose 20 pounds by exercising more and eating healthy.” Easy in theory, but--as many of us know--more challenging in practice.
It is the right strategy (and an analogy I relate to all too well), but it has several prerequisites to successful implementation:
- Day-by-day management
- The upholding of certain principles
- A sustainable, long-term commitment
Accomplishing these three tasks is a tall order for any business. Developing a strategy for implementing the Predictable Revenue model into your company is easy, actually implementing it can be another story.
Our next three blog posts will cover the ways to successfully implement a Predictable Revenue strategy in your company, and how Ambition can help.
Ambition: The 360° Sales Management Platform
Ambition is a sales management platform that syncs business teams, data sources, and performance metrics on one system.
Sales leaders use Ambition to enhance sales performance insights and build sales reports, scorecards, contests, and TVs that supercharge focus, effort and accountability.
Ambition is endorsed by Harvard Business Review and AA-ISP (the Global Inside Sales Organization). Hear more from business leaders who use Ambition in their organization.
- FiveStars: Adam Wall. Sr. Manager of Sales Operations .
- Filemaker: Brad Freitag. Vice-President of Worldwide Sales.
- Outreach: Mark Kosoglow. Vice-President of Sales.
- Cell Marque: Lauren Hopson. Director of Sales & Marketing.
- Access America Transport: Ted Alling. Chief Executive Officer.
Watch Product Walkthroughs:
- ChowNow. Led by Vice-President of Sales, Drew Woodcock.
- Outreach. Led by Sales Development Manager, Alex Lynn.
- AMX Logistics. Led by Executive Vice-President ,Jared Moore.
Read Case Studies:
- Clayton Homes: HBR finds triple-digit growth in 3 sales efficiency metrics.
- Coyote Logistics: Monthly revenue per broker grew $525 in 6 months.
- Peek: Monthly sales activity volume grew 142% in 6 months.
- Vorsight: Monthly sales conversations grew 300% in 6 months.
Contact us to learn how Ambition can impact your sales organization today.