September 8 by Zack Alspaugh
The NFL season finally kicked off this past weekend. Since football is the ultimate team sport, everyone with their individual assignments working in coordination to execute a greater strategy, I thought it would be fun to compare the dynamics of a football team to an enterprise. Here’s the position-by-position breakdown of what your company would look like if it were a football team:
1. QB – VP of Sales, the leader of your offense, sees the whole field and connects with the reps to score.
2. Offensive Line – IT, working in the trenches and pushing everyone towards success. It’s sometimes a thankless task, but a very critical part of company.
3. Wide Receivers are Sales Reps as they go out and make the big plays. They are the ones putting points on the board, the money makers of your company.
4. Tight Ends – Marketing, sometimes they are out in the field, getting attention and scoring points. Other times they are in the trenches producing content and leads, so the QB and Receivers can bask in the glory. Either way a good TE/Marketing program will give any offense an edge.
5. Running Back – Sales Engineers, they are the work horses constantly pushing your deal towards a close. You can’t have a good pass game without a good run game. You can’t have effective sales reps without effective sales engineers. They are the ones you count on to get the deal across the line on 4th & goal.
6. Offensive Coordinator – Sales Ops, working behind the scenes, strategizing, game planning, and providing the offensive firepower the reps need to sell.
7. D-Line – Legal, They are big burly and don’t let anything get past them – whether in negotiations, managing compliance and risk, or ensuring your company is getting paid what it’s owed. You don’t want to mess with legal. They are the backbone to your defense.
8. Corners and Safety – Finance, it’s up to them to make sure revenue gets recognized. They are the last line of defense, if things are done wrong by finance, the company can get burned. But with high risk comes high reward. They define the company’s ultimate measure of success, and have to be quick and agile while providing revenue forecasts (which are always a moving target). Don’t be fooled, they hit with force too. They are often tasked with playing internal defense, such as stopping other departments from going over budget.
9. Linebackers – Operations, they have a wide range of skills and abilities which is why they are the heart of your defense. They are quick to handle implementations, shut down disgruntled customers, and tackle inventory and logistics.
10. Kicker – CFO, when everything goes right your CFO is the hero, if things go wrong, the CFO can be the goat. When the game is on the line, you count on your CFO more than anyone.
11. Head Coach – CEO, thinks big picture strategy, is the face of your company, and puts your team in a position to win.
12. GM – HR, finding talent and assembling the winning team.
13. Scout – CIO, Always has his/her eyes on the horizon. Always cognizant of the team’s future plans, as well as your competitor’s strategy.
You wouldn’t expect all of these positions to work independently of each other on the gridiron, so why do you do it in your enterprise?
Whether you are in Sales, Sales Ops, Legal, Finance, Operations, or any management position, you share one common goal with everyone else in your company: the desire to drive revenue and increase efficiency. Quote-to-Cash will allow you to do both. However, Quote-to-Cash is often the least automated and least measured area of an enterprise. It is usually a fragmented process that encompasses numerous departments and platforms despite having common data. Don’t let your company run in siloed processes. Like a football team, if your company isn’t working in a coordinated, harmonized fashion, you will not have success.