Should you feel sorry for revenue prevention departments

January 24, 2012 – 12:49 am

Does your organization have or do you work with a revenue prevention department or revenue prevention team?

For those not familiar, a revenue prevention team or department is an expression that refers to those who get in the way of selling, closing and generating revenue for an organization.

In a sales dominated organization, the revenue prevention team or department might be refereed to as those who do not do what sales wants when and how they want it. Anything other than what sales wants is seen as getting in the way of revenue. Sometimes sales will see marketing, engineering, manufacturing, quality control, human resources, finance and accounting or legal as revenue prevention departments. In other instances, the revenue prevention team or department of some sales organizations will refer to those in customer or prospects organizations that get in the way or slow down the process of closing the deal. Yet another example can be outsiders or third parties such as consultants, analysts, advisors or others who are brought into the sales process by a customer or prospect and seen by a sales organizations as a barrier to revenue prevention obstacle.

On the other hand, sales can also be seen as a revenue prevention department when as a whole or on a smaller or personal basis they get in the way of actually bringing in the deals. For example a sales based revenue prevention department, team or personal may be spending too much time selling however not enough actually closing or getting the real deal. This can be due to different reasons such as the sales rep trying to sell the wrong solution to a particular customer or prospect needs, or simply not being able to close the deal.

If you have never seen the movie Glengary Glen Ross take a few minutes and check at least the highlights out including the classic lines such as ABC: Always Be Closing or Coffee is for Closers.

Now let’s get back to revenue prevention in the context of this post which are some revenue prevention scenarios.

Should you feel sorry for the vendor or var who misses their revenue or sales forecast while they were busy trying to sell something new and forgetting to take the order on the existing items?

Should you feel sorry for the vendor or var whose disk or storage sales are down because their customers and prospects headed their advise from last couple of years to dedupe everything?

Well, if their dedupe sales are not making up for the shortfall, no, you should not feel sorry for them nor their investors.

Should you feel sorry for the vendor or var whose server sales and associated software including hyper visors and tools are down because their customers and prospects headed their advise from last couple of years to virtualize everything?

Well, if the corresponding increase in services, new tools, engagements for data protection and other modernization do not make up for it then no.

Should you feel sorry for the vendor or var whose laptop, desktop and workstation along with corresponding pull of other items has resulted in business going elsewhere while they have sold VDI?

How about should you feel sorry for the vendor or var whose customers or prospects are no longer buying as much hardware, software or services as they headed the advise and went to Goggle, Amazon or some other cloud?

Ok, do you get my point?

In the quest to increase opportunity, boost revenue, expand into adjacent markets and technologies there is a balancing act of generating awareness, moving customer and prospect into new areas while keeping the revenue prevention team on the bench to avoid disrupting annuities or current revenue streams.

In other words, embrace the new, avoid clinging to the old with a death grip, be careful with leading beading edge without a dual redundant blood bank (or at least a backup plan). Put another way, find a balance of taking orders for what your customers want while selling them on where you want them to go.

Ok, nuff said for now

Cheers gs

Greg Schulz – Author Cloud and Virtual Data Storage Networking (CRC Press, 2011), The Green and Virtual Data Center (CRC Press, 2009), and Resilient Storage Networks (Elsevier, 2004)

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