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Growing Revenue: Not Always As Simple As It Seems


One of my areas of responsibility is revenue growth and while this is not new to me as I have been in sales my entire career, striving for double digit growth quarter over quarter in a services business can be a pretty tall order.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m not whining.  We have done quite well and have emerged from the 2009 downturn with double digit growth in 2010 and 2011.  But what fun would it be just to sit back and accept fast growth when it could be super fast growth?  The major challenge, as I see it, is that when you turn up the expectations, the many variables involved tend to be magnified.  describe the image

For example, an unexpected change to your team when you were counting on growth of 1x seems much more dramatic when you increase that goal to 2 or 3x.  Another important factor, stating the obvious, is the economy.  Bad economic news affects the moods of CFOs and CFOs control budgets.  When overall economic confidence is low, so is that of CFOs. This typically translates to a more cautious approach to investing, which typically translates to longer sales cycles and smaller deals.

Existing customers notice as well.  Perhaps their budgets are cut or are under increased scrutiny.  They might be a little less patient and they need to see results sooner than can reasonably be expected.  This can put additional pressure on the support team, resulting in undue stress.  Undue stress can take a typically positive mood down a notch, which is never good. Just as a positive attitude can bring a team up, stress can bring a team down.

In order to grow aggressively in a mature market, it's necessary to be firing on all cylinders.  This can be tricky business when there are so many variables, many of which are out of your control. 

While challenging and frustrating at times, working with my team to meet and exceed goals and solve problems is what gets me out of bed in the morning. Knowing that I am surrounded by an extremely talented and motivated team of professionals gives me confidence that great things can be accomplished.  They already have been, and there are even greater things in store for the future. There is tremendous strength in numbers. If your entire team is focused on a single goal, with a positive attitude, anything is possible.

The good news is that if you have the confidence to shoot for the stars and miss, you're still likely to land in a great place. Never give up, nothing worthwhile comes easy.  


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