In one of our recent webinars, our CEO Blaine Hatab did a deep dive into how cannabis operators can use sales ops to their advantage. For those who aren’t familiar, sales operations refers to the activities and processes within an organization that support and enable the sales team to be more efficient and create value faster. In other words, sales operations is the support your sales staff needs to achieve their fullest potential. In this post we summarize the five steps he covered so that you can begin implementing sales ops at your organization immediately. So let’s begin.
Rather than defining your goals as the first step, start by finding the right software tool(s) for your business. Why? Because this gives you a solid foundation to build on. With the basic functionality in place, you can start focusing on the next steps. So, which software tools are the most vital for your business?
Once you have a foundation, it’s time to start thinking about your business goals that we have broken down into three types:
A crucial step in goal-planning is to measure your goals so that you can define whether or not they’re successful. Having the ability to understand what works and what doesn’t is a reflection of how fast you can improve and grow your sales operation, which is why having a success criteria is imperative.
Attaching quantitative measurements to goals makes them more clear and actionable. For example, instead of saying: “We want to automate how we print COA:s to speed up fulfilLment,” you could change it to: “We want to reduce the average order fulfilment time by 30 minutes by automating how we collect COA:s”.
In the post remaining we dive into a real example and show you the steps to making sales ops actionable. In this example, we want to increase customer re-orders by 25% and we want to do this by alerting sales reps about stagnant customers who are no longer ordering at their usual cadence.
The first step is to make an execution plan so that your team is clear on what needs to be done. You should structure this plan how you want to, rather than using a template. By getting creative, you’ll find it easier to engage your team.
Also, make sure the measurement is explicit and time-bound, such as “increase reorders by 25% in 90 days.”
Here’s a sample process for attaining the goal of increasing reorders:
A useful tip is to also write down everything that could go wrong during this process. You’ll then go through the problems one by one and work out how to address them.
Once your execution plan is set, the next step is to get detailed about your tooling and your data. The number one mistake people do is that they don’t experiment and don’t actually use the tools. So, our advice is to just get started, and figure it out as you go.
Once your execution plan and reporting format is ready, it’s time to start implementing it. This means getting it into the hands of your sales reps so they can start using it every day. It’s a pretty straight-forward process that can be summed up in three steps:
The last step of the process is to measure and iterate. As part of the sales ops team, you need to measure how well the initiative is doing, which involves planning how you’re going to measure it, what tools to use, and the criteria for that data. Continuing with our example above, the measurement criteria could look like the following:
Make sure that you have the right criteria, don’t be afraid to make any necessary changes. As a sales ops person, you should be leading the dialogue. This means you need to look into the orders data yourself, which comes back to double-checking your work. Go into the platform to ensure you have all the dialogue needed to talk to the CEO.
The gap that scares most people when it comes to measuring data is getting into the tools. Our advice is to be fearless with data and measurements. Go into your order platform, go to reports and download the data.
Some final tips on how to successfully measure your plan:
Investing in sales ops is essential for any company serious about operating in today’s competitive cannabis environment. In this post we covered We’ve gone over how cannabis operators can create a high performance sales team by using five simple steps. To sum it up, here are some points to keep in mind as you move forward:
We hope you found this helpful. Please do not hesitate to reach out if you would like to discuss your own sales ops plans at your company.