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3 min read

Why RevOps? Why now?

Why RevOps? Why now?

When I connect with a business owner, there’s almost inevitably a problem they are trying to solve. 

Sometimes they believe it’s marketing: “Our emails to new leads aren't being opened or clicked. Our ad budget is going to waste. We must be doing something wrong with our marketing!”

Sometimes they believe it’s marketing: “Our emails to new leads aren't being opened or clicked. Our ad budget is going to waste. We must be doing something wrong with our marketing!”

Other times they think they have a problem with sales: “I don’t think our sales team is using our CRM to the fullest. I know that there’s so much potential to up-sell and cross-sell to our customers, but we’re already so busy it’s hard to find those opportunities let alone keep up with what’s already on our plate!” 

The reality for most business owners is that they are so caught up working in their business, that quantifying, fixing, or even fully defining their problem is not always obvious. 

Why RevOps? Why now?

Let me tell you about a business owner I recently worked with that was having these same problems.

This owner started his business by himself over 7 years ago and was able to grow it to a multi-million dollar a year business with over 50 employees. What an incredible feat! But the past few years revenue had started to stall, and his forecast for this year was well below what he’s done historically. What was going on? Are they not marketing enough? Is the sales team dropping the ball? There was a clear problem, but the answer was not obvious. 

Over the past few years his business added tools or other apps to their already large and disjointed tech stack, all in an attempt to genuinely solve a problem and do better. Today the business was left with a tech stack from hell:

  • A Zoho account for the CRM
  • Freshdesk for customer support
  • Two Klaviyo accounts for marketing automation
  • Multiple Shopify stores
  • A legacy but irreplaceable ERP,
  • A whole slew of Google Sheets to help facilitate handoffs during key processes between different teams. 

This tech stack was not properly integrated, there was no source of truth, and their team was forced to jump from one tool to the next in an attempt to figure out what is going on and how to best act.

And worst of all, many leads and customers are left with experiences wrought with friction and frustration. 

What led to these challenges for this business owner is the way he thought about solving his problems. A problem needs a solution, and how you solve the problem depends on how you look at it.  If you’re looking at the immediate problem, you’re likely looking at a symptom of a much larger, deep-seeded, entwined, and structural set of issues.

When you solve a symptom, you’re using duct tape and bubble gum or, in other words, you’re probably adding another tool, spreadsheet, meeting, custom property or whatever it may be. In other words, you add complexity. 

But in order to push past these revenue plateaus, you need to look at your business holistically. As a business owner you are like a conductor, and your orchestra consists of the people, processes, systems (apps, tech), and data that combine to produce revenue.

Revenue Operations, or RevOps for short, consists of optimizing the people, processes, systems, and data that combine to produce revenue. It’s aligning sales, marketing, customer service, and operations together to optimize for growth. 

When you evaluate a problem like a lack of adoption of your CRM, you must ask why the CRM isn’t being used. Ask the sales reps and they may tell you the CRM is clunky and time consuming to use. Ask why again, and you may uncover the fact that the data in the CRM is incomplete or messy and duplicative, causing the reps to hop between other systems to get at the truth and best figure out how to solve for the customer. 

Problems like this are not solved by adding another app. In fact, they are made worse by adding another app. You can’t add simplicity. You can only remove complexity. 

RevOps is the best framework to understand surface-level problems as symptoms, and to remove complexity by streamlining operations and aligning all teams and team members around delighting leads and customers.

To conduct RevOps, you need to first document the people, processes, systems, and data that work together to produce revenue. You then identify all the sources of friction leading to issues with a company’s go-to-market and buyer’s journey. You then quantify the cost of these issues, and prioritize fixing them from a holistic perspective. This process may involve better defining the roles and responsibilities among your team members, reconstructing and simplifying key processes, reducing your tech stack, and ironing out your data model. Each of these steps is done with the other steps in mind. 

If you have hit a revenue plateau, or have even contracted, chances are you could benefit from RevOps! I’ll be writing about this going forward. Stay tuned and let me know what you think!