Mental Toughness Playbook
Please enter your work email below and we'll send you a copy of the Mental Toughness Playbook.
Asia Corbett, Head of Revenue and Community Operations for RevGenius, stops by to talk with Brad on this episode of Decision Point. From financial impacts to the simple day-to-day stuff, Asia explains the importance of RevOps in the everchanging SaaS landscape. Along the way, we learn how Asia ended up in Operations and what other setbacks helped lead her on her journey to where she is today.
[00:00:00] Brad Seaman: Well, let’s just get, let’s get started. Tell me a little bit about you how’d you get to where you’re at. How’d you get connected with rubbed genius. What’s your story?
[00:00:07] Asia Corbett: Yeah. So it’s funny that you mentioned adversity because in the last, I mean, pandemic aside, like just, oh my gosh, I had. S H I T that I’ve gone through in the last year and a half or two.
So kind of just going all the way back to the beginning. I studied economics and statistics in college, and I fully intended on being like a CFO. That was my, I was convinced that was my path. And so I kind of started out and stuff. Semi finance roles. And I say semi finance, because there was always an operational component to it.
Like how do I do things in a repeatable sort of a manageable way? Like if people are emailing me all the time asking me things, how can I streamline that a little bit? And so each move kind of went away from. Journal entries and budget reconciliations, and doing like the department meetings and making sure that departments are spending, they have budgeted for like a budget versus actuals co managing the corporate card expenses.
That is not fun. I was like, I don’t want to be in a county. This is boring. And so I like my role started getting more operations. And then I got into tech and I was still in sort of like these revenue or business operations as overall company operations roles. And now like revenue operations is this buzzword.
It’s like this trendy thing, but it has existed for a long time and has been part of like, what would be your business operations team? So I let’s see, let me, let me go back to 2020. I left a company that I had been at for about two years because it was, my growth was stagnant stagnating. And I was like, okay, maybe I want to go back into the more analytical side of things.
So I went to work for a very big tech company as a business analyst for the go-to market organization. And I was like, I still get to work with all these people, but maybe I want to do more data analysis. I was like, I don’t know if I want to do this. Actually, what ended up happening is well, first there was the pandemic, my team that I was on dissolved.
Like they got rid of the, the business planning department. They put me on the finance team. Does they put that team are like, okay, we’ll just move you into.
Let’s see. So I had just started, I just started this company. I left the other one to go to this large company to do business planning and analysis, which is analytical, but very different from like the finance analytics or so I thought, and so literally like a month in they’re like, oh yeah, by the way, the business planning department is no more.
And I was like, oh, Cool. So the person who hired me, I’m going to be reporting to somebody else, VP of finance. I was pregnant at this time and then let’s see, we, we went into lockdown shortly after that. I think then they decided to eliminate my role on the finance team. So I got laid off a week before I gave them.
Before I was supposed to go on maternity leave. So then I’m trying to figure out, well, first I’m trying to like focus on that, like, okay, I have to go do that first. And then afterwards I’m like, well, I always knew that I wanted to work. Like, I’ve kind of, I like working, I enjoy working. And I wanted to go back into work.
And so just trying to figure out, okay, well now I have to find a job. Like a lot of people looking for jobs. What do I want to do? I want to go back into operations. And so two small tech company to build out the sales operation side of things. And what happened is what kind of happens in small organizations with small teams is they’re like, well, like, yeah.
Can you do also the marketing operations? And can you also do a well, yeah. What about customer success? So that, that becomes revenue operations, or you’re not just focused on one segment of your go to market. You were focused on all of the revenue generating teams, that’s the whole revenue engine. So so I was there for a little while.
I enjoyed my time there mostly, but what I found in like, sort of, I guess, at this point in my career, cause I’ve been working for a long time. Now culture is really important. Like organizational culture is really important and it doesn’t matter what role you’re doing or, or what company you work for.
If the culture is that transparent and open and supportive and respectful, then you’re not in a good, you’re not in a good place. And that was something that was very top of mind for me, as I was thinking about the next place to go to. Yeah, I’m sort of, and, and so I go on about the culture thing. I’m thinking, I’m talking about culture from an organizational perspective, like across the company and then culture around what operations means to an organization because frequently, especially in the revenue operations community and the sales, operations community, and marketing operations, community operations.
Is seen as like we’re just the tech stack people or we’re just the system admins, or like just build me a report or pull this data. I’m really, operations is a lot more of a mat. It’s the processes. It’s defining processes, it’s mapping processes. It’s helping improve processes. It’s laying them, the systems and the tools on top of the.
So that when you pick your tech stack or as you can figure your tech stack or make changes, the tools that you’re using support the business processes and not the other way around, because that’s what happens very frequently is people get the tools because they’re like, Ooh, that’s a cool tool. I want outreach.
Yeah. It’s great. But there’s no. There is no process. There’s no defined way of how to use it. So then people go in there and it’s the wild, wild west. And then you integrate these tools with other systems and other systems or their teams use. And so there’s a lot of upstream and downstream impacts that people don’t realize.
And that’s part of our, our job as operations people is to be a steward of that as well. And so culturally, if the team, if the leadership team in your company is not bought into that, you’re going to have a hard time as an operations person. And you’re going to. Leave, which is, you know, that that’s what happens.
So people are kind of getting are, are, I’ve noticed that there is a little more non-interest but maybe there’s a shift, a culture shift that’s happening and it’s slow and culture is slow to change, but it’s there. And so I was part of rev genius as a, as a member, as a part of the community. As a member, Jared reached out to me, he’s like, Hey, do you want to join the community?
And I was like, sure, I was part of, I still am part of a couple of other operations focused communities like wizard of ops. So a lot of people know that one rev ups co-op, which is managed by funnel IQ, via company funnel IQ. And those are like smaller groups. Of mostly revenue operations and sales, operations professionals.
Whereas rev genius is a community that’s open to all revenue professionals. So sales, marketing, customer success, and then us as well. And there are some other small segments. Like there may be some people operations, people are in there, but largely it’s the revenue folk. So Jared reached out to me and he said, do you want to join the community?
I said, yeah, why not? And you know, I started engaging in there asking questions and meeting people and really, and people who would ask questions to, and I’d be like, Hey, actually, I experienced that. I could walk you through what I did or, Hey, I have an example that you might, you might find useful. Or do you have an example for me?
Or do you have some advice for me? So I started leaning in there more. He asked me. Would you be willing to write for the bag, the road genius, mag. I said, sure. Why not? I can write about robot stuff. It’s something I like doing. And then we kind of started talking a little bit, he shared with me his vision and kind of what he saw for the future of community and how that plugs into learning and how that plugs into the, into the tech industry in general.
And I was like, yeah, that’s great. You know, and he told me what the mission of, of rev geniuses is to educate and empower. And inspire, educate, empower, and inspire revenue professionals. And I was like, wow, those are my core values as a person. I love helping people like you, like when you watch someone realize something, you know, like you see their face, light up kind of like, oh, I got it.
Like that’s to me, if I have helped that, then I might like, I could die happy. So I was like You know, what did you have in mind for the operations person that you wanted to bring onto the team? Cause we were talking about that to certain.org structure. He’s like, do you know anyone in operations who’s young in their career, like new in their career?
Like a couple of years of experience, who’s like, like you, but entry level. And I was like, No, I didn’t say no, but to be honest, people do not graduate college and go no. And if they go into operations, they’re in supply. They’re in the engine, like shipping industries, right. That, so I have a lot of thoughts about that and how, how that those principles can be brought to the tech world.
But that’s another, that’s an aside. So Jen, we were talking about this, he’s like, do you know anyone? I said, Hmm, I could check that at work, but I don’t think so. And it was at this time I was kind of figuring out what my next move was going to be in which company I wanted to like how to figure out if the, or the value.
And the culture matched, like what the people say and their job descriptions, you know, they’re like, well, we have a great culture. Yeah, sure. What does that mean? And when Jared was talking about the vision and talking about the mission and all of this stuff, and from what I’ve experienced in the community, just to people, what Jared was able to build is because he believes in that mission, he built the community organically, like by going out and.
And talking to people and asking them to join the community. So I was like, man, that’s really, that’s amazing. I don’t know anyone, Jared who’s like entry level, but if you want, I could help because, because this is important to me, this, this mission that you’re on here. Why not. And I started two days later.
And yeah, and it’s been a really fun and it’s been a wild ride in the last five or six months as most startups usually go. And I was brought on to be the head of revenue and community operations. And we’ve kind of joked that role really it’s, it’s all about operations because there are like, Operational logistical things that happen in accompany that don’t fall into either one of those categories like HR and payroll, things like that.
So yeah, I joined to help number one, empower people and inspire people and help teach people and learn from people, but also to help shirts.
Please enter your work email below and we'll send you a copy of the Mental Toughness Playbook.