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Start a Sales Operations Revolution!

September 08, 2016 | By Mark Levinson

  • Sales operations leaders are continuing to look for best practices to help them create a more strategic function
  • There are seven major accountabilities on which sales operations must focus
  • In order to revolutionize a sales operations function, leaders must define the essential critical competencies

To drive a revolution, you need strong leaders and an aligned team that believes in the cause. In recent years, b-to-b sales operations leaders have been focused on winning their battle to become a more strategic function within sales organizations. I have seen that in order to be successful in this transformation, sales operation leaders must define the major accountabilities required within the function and ensure the right competencies to support those accountabilities exist. 

Let’s start by defining accountabilities and competencies. Accountabilities are a set of disciplines that align to the expected outputs that a function will own. Competencies are the knowledge, skills and processes required to execute at a best practice level within each discipline.

The good news is that we can define competencies across basic, intermediate and advanced levels. Although having competencies align to each accountability would be the best-case scenario, it is certainly not a requirement. A sales operations leader must identify the critical accountabilities needed to support the sales organization; the maturity of the company will help determine the accountabilities needed and the level of competency required.

If I have piqued your interest in this critical topic, please join me at Dreamforce, where I will be presenting at their Sales Summit on Tuesday, October 4. My conversation will focus on defining seven major accountabilities that sales operations must own and describe the critical competencies that are linked to those accountabilities.

My goal is to provide you with data insights built from SiriusDecisions research on where other sales operations leaders rate the competencies in their team – and then outline a set of action items you can use to enhance the productivity of your team. 

Please click here to see a preview of what I will be presenting at this year’s Dreamforce in San Francisco. I look forward to seeing you there!

Mark Levinson

Mark Levinson is Vice President and Group Director of Sales and Channel Services at SiriusDecisions. Mark’s nearly 20 years of experience includes a wide variety of sales operations issues including strategic planning, territory optimization, compensation plans, account management, sales tools and sales analytics. Follow Mark on Twitter @MarkBLevinson.