Every company, including my own firm, is working hard each day to find, keep, and grow customers. The urgency for revenue now is real. But, I asked myself this morning a very direct question. Am I implementing strategies and tactics that are perpetuating this short-term thinking? Or, do I have strategies and tactics in place that will in good time create a consistent revenue flow?
Sometimes I have to remind myself that if I don’t want to be in a hole, stop digging! If I want to move forward stop running in place like a gerbil in a buttoned down Oxford shirt. I tell myself to stop spending all day staring at next week’s calendar and devote at least half my time thinking about 3 months from now; six months from now.
Seriously folks, the short-term thinking is rampant in many U.S. companies. I’ll say it again. The revenue urgency is real, but companies are going to stay in this short-term do-or-die mode longer than necessary if the right marketing and sales folks aren’t investing time, enthusiasm and dollars in strategies, tactics, best practices and plans that fill the funnel with buyers and progress them through all stages.
Larger companies, as a general rule, have less of a problem balancing short-term and longer-term revenue thinking. Some positions or departments, by definition, have a longer-term focus than others. However, the smaller company is caught between a rock and a hard spot when the same handful of people in marketing and sales have to bring home the bacon this week and put plans in place for next quarter, too.
It’s easy for the small company to get caught with shovel in hand digging like crazy. Take a minute today and look around your office and down the hall. What percentage of the focus is going toward meeting this month’s revenue number compared to the revenue target six months from now? If it’s not balanced, better get used to how that shovel feels.
If you see that all of the bandwidth of your sales and marketing team is involved in short-term lead gen and revenue gen you have a self-perpetuating problem. The sooner you can invent a way to balance short-term and long-term revenue generation planning, the faster you’ll return to consistent growth. Look outside the box. Look outside the organization for a trusted revenue consultant who can work in parallel with your team to get plans, strategies and tactics in place for longer term results.