Laura Cross, Vice President and Principal Analyst and Anthony McPartlin, Principal Analyst

Show Notes:

The episode starts with a definition of what revenue operations is and what it isn’t. Revenue operations is an execution strategy that focuses on unifying the operations resources across sales, marketing, and customer success to improve the customer experience and create more value for customers. “The goal is not to combine all ops functions into one, create a new function, or upend org design,” Cross explains. “And it’s definitely not to somehow reduce or diminish the role of sales and marketing.”

Cross and McPartlin agree that the rise in revenue operations has been driven by the need for alignment and to more effectively leverage the vast digital interaction data available to organizations today. But when it comes to a revenue operations approach, it’s important to understand that there is no one model — it varies across organizations based on their context, business demands, and maturity. Successful revenue operations org structures can range from completely decentralized to completely unified and centralized, with a hybrid approach being perhaps the most effective.

So what makes a good revenue operations leader? Cross says qualities such as curiosity, boldness, and a change-agent mindset will make a good RevOps leader: “They’re probably the ones that are the most bold. They’re going to go into an area that hasn’t really been done before … so they have to have that change agent mindset, and also, these are strategic operators.”

Cross and McPartlin go on to dispel some myths about revenue operations later in the episode, such as the belief that it is a cost-cutting exercise without true benefits or that it reduces agility. In fact, revenue operations should be seen as a strategic partnership that drives commercial impact, improves customer engagement, and increases revenue predictability. Some of its biggest benefits include the ability to leverage data and insights across the entire buyer and customer lifecycle without concern for technical debt being built up. It also helps organizations improve accountability and collaboration and align planning and investment priorities.

The episode closes with a look at the future potential for revenue operations. McPartlin emphasizes its ability to not only produce and deliver insights but to look at an organization’s services and customer activity to be able to determine where there are new opportunities. And Cross says there is a strategic value to process excellence that doesn’t get talked about enough. “If we can get process excellence taken care of, I think that will be delivering on the promise that the executive leaders have,” she says.