It is critical that you align sales plans with corporate strategy. That's easier said than done, but following these four steps will get you thinking in the right direction.
First, the organization needs to agree on the corporate strategy that will be delivered though sales. Is the goal to increase revenue, further penetrate the market, increase profitability, improve retention, sell long term contracts?
Some of these goals are mutually exclusive and, unfortunately, you can't have it all. You need to ensure that the strategy doesn't compete with itself. Also, look at the number of goals. If you try to focus on too many of them, they get diluted and the company will not achieve any of its objectives.
Next, see if the corporate strategy differs from last year's. If the strategy will remain unchanged, did the sales plan deliver the desired results in the previous year? If it didn't, search for the disconnect and adjust your sales plan. Analyzing your team's performance distribution may point to the source of your problem. ( See our post on "Building A Performance Distribution Curve On Your Sales Team". )
Once the corporate and sales strategies are defined, determine how the various job roles support the strategy. Defining job roles goes beyond a focus on revenue numbers. A change in strategy may lead to adding job roles to focus on developing channel partner relationships or separating new sales from renewal sales.
Lastly, look at measures within the roles. Measures are things a rep carries a quota or goal for. It is imperative that these measures align to the sales strategy. With its visual approach, Makana's alignment view helps the plan designer ensure that the measurements support the corporate strategy and that the plans are aligned along job roles.