Category Archives: Sales Ops

New and Improved Capacity Planning Model

A few years ago, I wrote this article on capacity planning with an approach that capitalized on regional management buy-in to pave the path to achievement.  Since then I’ve had several requests from Sales leaders to expand and improve the model as most of them are in small start-ups … Continue reading

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Size Matters for the Top Sales Leader’s Comp

CEOs, CFOs and CPOs are usually very involved in determining the on-target earnings (OTE) for the Sales leader role and they understand that the size of the Sales team matters.  Beyond size OTE is driven by competition for top talent and then augmented by the skillful negotiating … Continue reading

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How to Convert Your Regional Targets into Better Rep Quotas

Let’s assume for a minute that your Board of Directors and executive leadership have agreed on a strategy for the coming year. This strategy usually includes specific strategic goals (e.g. revenue targets). Let’s further assume that your Finance organization has … Continue reading

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Sales Role Alignment with your GTM Strategy

Software sales compensation models have evolved with new licensing models. The mega-deals based on multiple years of customer’s projected need and licensed perpetually are now rare. More common today is the subscription license and with it a requirement to recognize … Continue reading

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Measuring Sales Operations – A Selfie

Sales Operations teams typically produce and analyze dozens of metrics and KPIs related to the productivity of the sales team or qualitative measures regarding other aspects of Sales.  Rarely is qualitative and quantitative analysis focused on measuring Sales Operations.  We never take a selfie … Continue reading

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Modeling Commission Calculations in Excel

During a recent consulting engagement I found myself once again re-inventing a formula in Excel for modeling commission calculations to estimate the cost of the plan at various points above and below 100% attainment.  This task is complicated by the infinite variations … Continue reading

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If Your CRM Data Really is Garbage, Clean It Up!

I recently completed another project to address our CRM data quality issues for our account records in Salesforce.com.  Specific firmographic data (annual revenue, employee count and industry) determine our market segmentation and account assignments so having accurate data is critical to keeping … Continue reading

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Is Sales Enablement Limited to Training?

In recent months I’ve noticed a significant increase in the attention focused on the enablement of Sales organizations.  In Silicon Valley alone I find several online postings for positions for a Sales Enablement Director or VP being sought today.  This … Continue reading

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Three Ways to Better Focus Your Sales Comp Plan

One approach to improving the focus of your sales comp plan is to carefully manage the number of components your commission plan includes.  Since fewer commission plan components result in a more focused plan, how do you reduce them while maintaining alignment … Continue reading

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What’s The Difference Between Sales and Sales Operations?

The difference between Sales and Sales Operations is clearly confusing to those outside of the Sales profession but I suspect it is not entirely clear to a few of us here as well.  I can’t tell you how many times … Continue reading

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Are Your Sales Stages Effective?

It’s not often that a sales manager gets to design new sales pipeline stage definitions used by an organization.  It usually occurs in smaller organizations when a new sales leader is appointed and in larger organizations when a new sales … Continue reading

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CRM Adoption and Metrics, Chicken or Egg?

It is widely recognized that the next advancements in sales performance will be derived from better metrics leading to more timely coaching.  Many of the sales VPs I speak with acknowledge they need insightful funnel metrics to help run their … Continue reading

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What is Sales 2.0?

I was speaking with a Sales leader last week when he asked me, “How do you define Sales 2.0?”  At first I thought this was an easy question but as I formulated an answer (I try to do that before I … Continue reading

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You’re hired! A check list of things to consider next…

Walking into any new job, let alone a sales management job, can be overwhelming unless you have a plan.  There are a number 90 day plan for new manager templates available but these are by necessity generic in nature.  For those … Continue reading

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Resource Specialization: Sales Development Representatives

“Sales Development” is a description composed of two words, the discrete meaning of which is clear but in combination the definition of the phrase can be ambiguous.  For example, it can used to mean sales training, as in “developing” the … Continue reading

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Choosing Effective Sales Metrics

One of the more important seminars at a recent Sales 2.0 Conference in San Francisco involved a panel of Sales Operations experts slated to discuss the best sales metrics to track.  The question of which metrics should be used for your organization … Continue reading

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Sales Incentives: the Puzzle of Motivation

This 9 minute video by Dan Pink, author of DRiVE, is a humorous and enlightening white board presentation on how the same incentives can be either effective or ineffective depending on the circumstances.  I know a number of sales managers … Continue reading

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Elements of a Commission Plan – Plan Components

This is my second post on the topic of sales incentive compensation.  I need to outline these basic elements of a commission plan to set the ground work for future discussions so please bear with me. Like a three legged … Continue reading

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Software Sales Compensation Design

At least once every year we all need to create/review our incentive compensation strategy.  It’s all too easy to assume last year’s plan will work again in the coming year and, even if it did work, there is evidence that some … Continue reading

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