GTM Unleashed: The Art of Forecasting

Many leaders will tell you that forecasting is just that, a forecast. Forecasts have rarely been accurate in their experience.

I have worked the process below to consistently, over a relatively short period of time get to +/- 5% accuracy. Forecasting is a journey, not a destination. The process that I outline below works well, but you need to give it time to bake in the oven. I am still learning after forecasting for over 3 decades.

A good forecast will allow you to manage budgets and deploy resources appropriately with the support of revenue that is coming in the front door.

Forecasting is a complex process that requires a combination of technical skills, analytical abilities, and experience. Here are some steps you can follow to help someone learn the art of forecasting:

  1. Starting with the basics: Explain the concept of forecasting and its importance in decision-making with your team. Discuss the different types of forecasting techniques, such as qualitative, quantitative, and time series forecasting.
  2. Teach data analysis: Forecasting relies heavily on data analysis, so it’s important to have a solid understanding of statistics and statistical methods. Teach the individual how to collect, clean, and analyze data to make informed predictions.
  3. Practice with real-world examples: Provide real-world examples and case studies to help the individual understand how forecasting is used in different industries and organizations. This can include financial forecasting, sales forecasting, and weather forecasting, among others.
  4. Use software and tools: Leverage your RevOps and Finance teams to use software and tools, such as Excel or R, to perform forecasting. This will help them understand how to apply the methods they have learned in a practical setting.
  5. Encourage continuous learning: Forecasting is an ongoing process that requires continuous learning and development. Encourage your team to continue reading and learning about new forecasting techniques, methods, and tools.
  6. Provide feedback: Finally, provide regular feedback and support to help the individual improve their forecasting skills. Discuss their successes and challenges, and help them identify areas for improvement.
  7. Leverage what your heart and gut are telling you: If the numbers feel off to you, don’t ignore that feeling – dig in and dig deep. This may bring your forecast down below company expectations. If it does, you have to either take the pain upfront by telling management that you can’t deliver on the number or go find more business to shore up your numbers. Ignore your gut at your own peril.

Remember that forecasting is an iterative process and it takes time and practice to become skilled at it. Know your numbers; listen to your instincts when you look at the numbers; and factor in what your gut is telling you when looking at the data before issuing a forecast. I encourage you to be patient, and persistent and keep learning.

Are you still curious about forecasting? I am here, and at your service. Happy to chat for  15 minutes .

I’m here and at your service,

Phillip

P.S. Want to see what I am working on? Check out OneMeta AI and Verbum at:  https://www.onemeta.ai/ 

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