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Avaya, launched in 2000 was a spun off from Lucent Technologies which initially was
AT&T originally comprising Bell Labs research group. Avaya’s current problem can be
summed up as being an ambiguous relationship between sales and marketing resulting
in poor coordination and blame game, therefore affecting sales revenue. We in this
paper shall look into the cause of misalignment of the objectives of both departments
and suggest steps to align the same.
The problems can also be listed down as follows:
1. The regions don’t have the funnel needed to achieve their targets. The approach
to create demand is inconsistent.
2. The approach is not that of a single organization. Sales and marketing
departments are working as separate entities and doing their own things. There
is no alignment in the actions or objectives. Both departments have separate
funnels and exist independently of each other.
3. To integrate all the information collected into a coherent set of findings and
form recommendations on the basis of those on how to build the demand
generation engine that Avaya needed.
Let us try to understand where the misalignment originates from and how the
objectives stand different for each department.


Qualified Leads

Marketing Funnel




Sales Funnel

For instance. Let us see how the buying process can be mapped into activities under marketing and sales departments using the funnel as shown aboveDevelop a business strategy and define initiative Marketing Determine needs and requirements Marketing Evaluate options for vendors and solutions Marketing Select solutions and evaluate risk using ROI and risk reward Marketing and perspective Sales Resolve issues and concerns Sales Negotiate agreements Sales Implement solutions and assess outcomes Sales . focus. “Involve the brand manager in $2 million+ sales opportunities”).g. Evaluate and reward both teams’ performance based on shared important metrics. Create opportunities for Sales and Marketing to collaborate—for example. Both departments indulge in pure blame game leading to no positive outcome. including hand-off points for important tasks (such as lead follow-up) ALIGN by establishing regular meetings between Sales and Marketing to discuss major opportunities and Define who should be consulted on which decisions (e. Sales department might simply overlook the genuine leads created by Marketing department believing them to be bad quality and not be concerned with generating good quality leads. metrics and output of both funnels. planning a conference together or rotating jobs. INTEGRATE by having downstream marketers develop sales tools. Marketing Sales INPUT Impressions Leads FOCUS On generating new leads On existing customers PERFORMANCE METRIC Number of leads generated Meeting revenue targets OUTPUT Leads Closed sales Such differences can imply to marketing department creating bad quality leads and not be concerned with sales closure. help salespeople qualify leads.. On the other hand.As we can see that there is clear conflict of interest in terms of input. To solve this issue. And define key sales metrics—such as number of new customers and closings—for salespeople and downstream marketers. and use feedback from Sales to sell existing offerings to new market segments. aligned and integrated by following methodsDEFINE by creating clear rules of engagement. establish a sales goal to which both teams commit. sales and marketing departments should be defined.