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This week we bring you Part 3 of the Revenue Rat Hole Series. Again, my thanks to Paulo Eugenio Oliveira for his persistence in seeking the third installment of this series!

  • I asked the wrong question, why aren’t you giving me the right answer?

  •  If I answer the question you asked, we will never get the right result!

The Revenue Rat Hole series addresses one of the biggest “Revenue Generation” issues – we don’t understand each other and really don’t believe the same things when it comes to execution.  People in the revenue process (organizational leadership, finance, sales, customer support, product development, marketing, business development, etc.) don’t speak the same language or have aligned definitions for what they see or have the same set of beliefs for common revenue science words, experiences or phrases.

Each person in this process is sure they know what they are talking about and are sure they are doing the right thing, and therefore, everyone else must be misguided and wrong.  The result is we are all right, but we all disagree, and we end up actually working against each other.

To make matters worse, there are a lot of myths that provide false data points yet somehow we all believe the myths.  So we don’t speak the same language and aren’t aligned yet we all believe a group of myths that are mostly false.  It is amazing we create any profitable revenue.

Each situation where we don’t understand each other or believe a false myth we are in a Revenue Rat Hole.  So The Revenue Game has developed a series of Challenge articles to help everyone avoid Revenue Rat Holes, by sharing a common language, beliefs based on Revenue Science™ and exposing false myths.  By applying this, you will remove part of your Cost of Chaos for producing revenue, your top line will grow, and you will avoid the other unnecessary negative consequences from Revenue Rat Holes.  Please submit the Revenue Rat Holes you have seen and share with us how to avoid them by using the following format:

In this series, we will identify Revenue Rat Holes, give you a better way to language each one with the “Right Question’ (if we don’t ask the right question, we almost never get the right answer), explore the “Reality” and to find ways to “AVOID’ these Revenue Rat Holes.

Here goes the third in the Revenue Rat Hole series:

  1. Revenue Rat Hole #7: How can we get the right people on the bus? 
  • Right Question: How do I get those people committed to uniquely solving our customers problems who believes what we believe lined up to get on the bus??Reality: In the general case there are two types of “right people”.  One passes all the tests, went to the right schools, took the right classes and has perfect experience. 
  • With enough push and budget this type of right person will get on the bus, cash the check and take the seat they are assigned.  Type two is a person of passion and commitment.  They love the mission, the customers, and solving customer problems.  Group two is educated and humble – they are mission focused and more committed to the work more than the push and budget.  Group two lines up to get on the bus, will take any seat that aligns to their commitment, stay a long time and be happy with a reasonable compensation package.
  • How to Avoid this rat hole:  Be clear about your mission and WHY you exist.  Don’t focus on WHAT you do, but WHY you are doing it.  Look for staff who like you love the mission, the clients and making a difference.  Avoid staff who what to show how smart
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2. Revenue Rat Hole #8: Focus on building a culture as your primary strategic goal.

  • Right Question: Since culture is a result of Revenue Strategy and execution, how to use the Revenue Strategy to achieve the highest value mission resulting in a great culture?
  • Reality: Culture is either a mission or an outcome.  If it is a mission those leaders at HQ bring their ideas about a culture to a company and proceed to morph the company in the leader’s image of a great company.  Of course, this is an expensive major change effort directly impacting current and future staff, partners and customers.  This has many risks.  First to bring a culture to a new place tends to bring “fixed” rules, metrics and accepted types of behavior.  Second becoming part of the leader’s culture is often much more important to one’s career than serving customers – so customer focus is harmed.  The other choice is outcome.  Cultures that are outcome based developed from a buyer focused Revenue Strategy result brining customers the greatest value possible.  In the outcome culture the focus is not on making profits for the seller organization but helping the customer make more money than any other option, creating a living partnership based on joint value.  In the outcome model all resources are focused on making ideal customers profitable, so they never want to break the partnership and all seller team members are acknowledged for making that happen.  No resource is wasted on creating the leader’s vision of culture to be change when the next leader arrives.
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  • How to Avoid this rat hole: the Revenue Strategy is developed from the buyer’s frame of reference.  If organizations start out with a buyer focus, develop a deployment structure to help the buyer achieve greater value (which will return more value paid to the seller) and then executed to create greatest short-term and long-term buyer value – the culture becomes one of “buyer back” with metrics around deployment and execution.  This is a mission culture and continuously improves based on extending value to the buyer.  The politics become outcome-based vs making the leadership’s vision real.  Your team will be engaged around the mission since the mission is rewarding to the team, their career and the customer.

3. Revenue Rat Hole # 9: Why can’t I get everyone to do what I expect them to do to achieve my goals?

  • Right Questions: How to create organizational alignment that delivers customer value that justifies seller profitability in the short-term and for the long-term?
  • Reality: Customers are delighted when working with the seller who makes the customer’s world better than any other choice.  This normally means the customer makes more money with a lot less chaos.  When the buyer finds that seller partner who for the short-term delivers more profits with less chaos than any other choice the buyer tends to stay with that seller for the long-term.  Often in the short-term both parties experience that success, but the long-term results are disappointing.    Those short-term wins happen in bubbles or as a result from a random right time and right place engagement, which is not intentionally repeatable.
  • How to Avoid this rat hole: To avoid this Rat Hole and most others is to start from a Revenue Strategy.  A Revenue Strategy is not complete until it is deployable, which means those who will execute the strategy must have a deployment structure supporting all execution elements (sales, marking, customer service, etc.) based on the Customer Problem being solved that no one else solves.  In other words, avoiding rat holes always starts by answering these 5 Revenue Strategy questions:
    1. What is our brand promise?
    2. What’s the customer “problem” you solve that no one else solves?
    3. What niche/s do, or will you dominate?
    4. Who is your ideal customer?
    5. What is your key offer for dominating a niche?
      With these answered every person on your team plus outside partners know exactly what the mission is and how to support the mission through buyer focused deployment and execution.  The buyer focused strategy will focus the seller’s effort to keep adding additional buyer value through thought leadership.  This keeps the buyer to adding additional value over time.  Those team members or partners join the Revenue Strategy for their specific functions.  The value of these functions are measured by behavioral outcomes – now you have everyone going in one True North direction which continually delivers more customer value, which returns the greatest value to the seller.

Every business leader needs to learn to apply the science of “Revenue Generation” to their organization.  If you are practicing revenue science, you will be using common language and strategies.  As a result, you will avoid these and other Revenue Rat Holes.

Good luck, avoid Revenue Rat Holes, and be sure to share your success!

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Revenue Science™ and CRO Thinking

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Begins November 2, 2019