Revenue Enablement is a hot topic these days. I have to confess, it confuses me. I mean, hasn’t revenue enablement–that is maximizing our ability to create and grow revenue, been key for our organizations forever (We might, also, consider Profit Enablement)? Isn’t the responsibility of every customer facing function to figure ways to grow revenue and profits. Whether it’s acquiring new customers, retaining and growing them, doing the things that enable us to profitably grow revenue has always been part of our job.
So I’m confused about why Revenue Enablement is such a new thing. So I studied it a little more.
I mean, everything I read is about generating more revenue and growth. But, so much of the discussion seems to be more about organizational structure, new titles, and so forth. Somehow, it seems restructuring our organizations, giving people new titles is supposed to enable revenue.
Some of the discussion does make sense, it focuses on how we create a more integrated buying experience with our customers. Simplistically, are marketing, sales, customer experience creating a consistent experience for the customer. I get this. In every organization, in every function, we have to figure out how we work seamlessly together. How we align around purpose, strategy, goals, execution. How we identify and correct things that cause us to be in conflict, working effectively and efficiently together, in engaging our customers.
But that’s no different today than it was when I first got into business and started selling.
As I moved into leadership roles, I could see, sometimes we weren’t working effectively together, sometimes, we, in fact, seemed to work at cross purposes. So we looked at solving those issues. We had lots of tools to help us align goals, strategies, metrics. We had tools to look at workflow, to make sure we had clear understanding of how we work together to achieve our common goals. We looked at how we did it more effectively and efficiently. We looked at how we maximized our ability to engage customers.
Over time, our customers change, both their needs, their priorities, how they buy. Markets and market structures changed. Technologies and new methods caused us to rethink, all oriented around improving performance and our abilities to engage customers. New models arose–leveraging channel and reseller partners, leveraging e-Channels, creating “inside sales” teams, creating specialists.
All were oriented to improving our abilities to engage our customers and enable revenue generation and growth.
Of course sometimes, we developed new organizational structures, but those were generally less important than the processes of how we most effectively engaged the right customers. So we tended to be more focused on strategy, purpose, process, tools, metrics, values, clear roles/responsibilities, effective/efficient workflows, and maintaining alignment.
We just did our jobs, not focusing too much on new labels, new titles, but more on understanding the job to be done, then executing on it.
But I still struggle, “Isn’t this what we always should be doing?”
When I get confused with these kinds of things, I tend to rethink and reconsider it. Sometimes, I come up with different perspectives.
In our focus on Revenue Enablement, what if we focused more on our customers’ abilities to generate Revenue? I mean, not for us, but for themselves……
What if we focused on how our customers could grow their revenue (or profit)? Enabling them to grow, improve, achieve.
Somehow, it seems if we demonstrate our ability to enable our customers to get revenue, it would enable our own revenue generation.