A Revenue Improvement Plan is as important as a good strategic plan.
As a CEO or owner of a small business, you must continually seek ways to increase revenue, and having a well-planned approach that has defined outcomes is core to achieving your company strategy.
When the business strategy is set, the next step is for a revenue improvement plan related to marketing and sales. An improvement plan is a CEO’s way of maximising the return from your existing business assets and ensuring any new assets deliver real growth, and providing a set of focused areas for improvement.
Many companies focus their efforts on cash flow-related tactics, such as raising prices to exist customers as a method of increasing sales revenue. It positively impacts profit margins, but it does not give sufficient leverage to significantly grow a company.
Revenue improvement planning would look at new distribution channels for the company’s products and services; methods of finding new customers to increase sales. A marketing strategy would be developed as a subset of the business planning process, looking at the feasibility of new markets, new customer profiles and where business growth beyond existing customers can be achieved. This is developed in conjunction with sales planning.
The revenue planning process and development of new revenue goals need to be validated for their ability to be delivered.
Like all plans, they can be well-intended, but the delivery can be problematic, and marketing and sales are fluid in most years and can quickly stray from the intended strategy. Selecting the right person to keep on the plan is only part of the key to ensuring it happens. Most plans are not sufficiently granular enough to be delivered and often leave chasms with essential functions out.
To bolster plans, proactive CEOs seek a sales improvement review to complete a thorough independent review of marketing and sales and identify precisely where to focus attention and remove chasms and potential skill gaps that will hinder revenue growth. This mitigates the risk of essential elements being overlooked and raises the overall performance standard within the business.
A well-documented improvement plan will nominate the skills required to deliver. With the implementation roadmap in place, the plan needs to come to life, and as CEO, you need to ask, “Who will own the implementation of the plan? Who on my executive team will manage my initiative?” Do I need one or more people to ensure the implementation is completed successfully and embedded in the company?
You can draw on the internal leadership team, or you may need additional resources depending on the complexity of what is uncovered. You need to assign specific individuals to tasks and ensure those tasks are clear to achieve.
The implementation roadmap and clearly assigned roles support the company has clarity over what is required to be achieved. This ensures you do not fall into the two most common pitfalls.
- They do things that are not needed and waste time and resources heading in the wrong direction
- They blame others for things that were not included in the plan and needed to be done.
Clearly defining the implementation plan will have several benefits for your company:
- Avoid Disruption. Ever-changing priorities and focus disrupt improvements and halt creating a repeatable and sustainable business. It lowers productivity and overall effectiveness. The plan will stabilise the company and build momentum where you need it in revenue achievement.
- Minimise Lost Opportunity Cost. You embark on an improvement initiative for one reason – to deliver the revenue number. With every initiative delay, it is an opportunity lost. You are holding back the ability to deliver the revenue in that year. There comes a point when recovery within a year is impossible. You must avoid the lost opportunity cost by acting timely to the needs of growth.
- Reduce Sales Costs. When initiatives stall, sales teams, and their leadership, become distracted. They become less productive and effective at generating revenue. The team leans toward focusing on non-sales activity under the shadow of it being customer service. This ultimately cuts into your profitability. A well-planned rapid roll-out keeps your team focused on the real revenue drivers.
- Assign roles according to know-how. Like any hiring process, the best person must be sought for each position and not default to those already in the business. You may need to hire additional personnel to contribute the skills required to achieve the results. Like any growing business, new skills are necessary, and you need to identify quickly when a person cannot deliver what is needed. The risk is high in poor hiring decisions when it comes to revenue achievement. Experts in the right roles will produce superior results.
If you did not deliver the revenue in the past two years, you need to intervene now and take action with a sales improvement review. Please reach out to our office and discuss your specific situation.
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