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  3. The Purpose (and Power) of a Quarterly Business Review

Article The Purpose (and Power) of a Quarterly Business Review

Lauren Sickel Jan 5, 2022

Maintaining an open channel of communication is an essential component to building relationships with customers. After all, their needs and expectations could change at any time, especially in today’s unpredictable business environment. To remain competitive and on target, companies today should take the initiative to periodically hold discussions with customers, convey new value, and listen carefully to their concerns. This is where a quarterly business review (QBR) comes into play.

QBRs can help businesses improve the way they serve customers by creating a forum for honest conversation. As the name suggests, quarterly business reviews take place every 90 days, either remotely or in person. While quarterly reviews can seem a little scary at first, it’s relatively easy to prepare for them once you understand a few fundamentals.

Continue reading to learn more about the basics of how quarterly business reviews work, what they aim to achieve, and why these meetings are so vital in fostering B2B partnerships.

What are the Core Functions of a QBR?

In short, the purpose of a QBR is to facilitate a strategic meeting between your team and your customer. QBRs can ensure your customer’s near-term objectives are aligned with your own to create a clear roadmap to navigate the quarter ahead. During these meetings, you will have the chance to evaluate KPIs from the previous three months and dig deeper into the performance metrics most important to your customer.

Quarterly business reviews also provide the perfect setting to hold a Q&A and discuss in greater detail the most critical challenges facing your customers at the moment. In this way, QBRs can help to reaffirm the foundation of your business relationships.

The Power and Benefits of Quarterly Business Reviews

With the help of QBRs, Customer Success Managers can develop more effective solutions to serve their customers in the long term. In addition, quarterly business reviews can help your team members gain a broader understanding of your customer’s expectations and how they measure performance.

Here are some of the most impactful benefits to conducting quarterly business reviews:

Explore Lessons from the Previous Quarter

A lot can change in three months. Thus, a portion of every QBR must focus on evaluating metrics and market trends from the previous quarter. These meetings can provide a wealth of knowledge to both your internal team and your customer, bridging any gaps in communication that could get in the way of success. Regular QBRs allow both parties to discuss which KPIs have hit their mark and what areas could use improvement in the months and years ahead.

Identify Next Quarter Goals

Aside from looking to the past for ways to improve, QBRs also provide a great opportunity to prepare for the future. A quarterly business review sets the pace for the next quarter by accounting for factors like seasonal demand, ROI projections, and annual revenue objectives. By laying out a clear path for the next three months, your team will have a much easier time providing custom-tailored support for your valued customers.

Address Potential Obstacles

As your customer base begins to grow, it will require more flexible, scalable solutions to confront new challenges in the market. One major advantage to holding quarterly business reviews is the ability to possibly detect and resolve issues long before they have any impact on your customer’s bottom line. Best of all, QBRs ensure both you and your customer are on the same page when it comes to developing a strong action plan that can overcome any new obstacles.

Establish or Adjust Overarching Goals

A quarterly business review is a good time to reiterate the core objectives of your customer or modify existing goals to meet fresh challenges. QBRs remind your customers that you are committed to sharing their vision and are willing to adapt as their priorities shift to one direction or another. When goals change, a quarterly business review gives you a platform to demonstrate how your team has the tools, resources, and experience required to keep up.

Foster Honest Customer Feedback

Another benefit to QBRs is that they encourage your customers to open up about what truly matters to them. These meetings allow your customers to provide insightful feedback regarding your company’s performance and overall ability to meet their expectations.

Both positive reinforcement and criticism can offer a wellspring of useful information that will ultimately result in greater customer satisfaction. This helps you to build stronger relationships with customers in the long run.

Tips and Advice for Conducting a QBR

If you’re unfamiliar with quarterly business reviews or are unsure about how to proceed, there’s no need to panic. There are several ways you can ensure your next quarterly meeting with a customer goes according to plan.

Here are some essential tips to keep in mind before your next QBR:

Keep it Short and Simple

Avoid getting too lost in the minutiae or tiny details during the meeting; instead, try to convey the bigger picture to your customer. Communicating a clear, straightforward message during a QBR is the best way to prevent the discussion from going off track. If possible, try to keep the meeting as brief as possible so that your main points remain fresh in your customer’s mind long after the meeting ends.

Avoid Focusing on the Negative

With building any business relationship, there will always be difficulties and struggles along the way. Instead of spending time framing the problem at hand, try instead to expound upon actionable solutions your company plans to implement going forward.

Look for Opportunities to Add Value

Always take advantage of moments during a meeting where you can highlight the value you bring to the customer. Reminding your customers of why they work with you instead of the competition will help to strengthen trust and maintain your authority as an industry leader.

Generate Customer Success with Quala

Quala combines the knowledge of frontline teams with customer data to generate a comprehensive, broader perspective of your customer’s health — essentials for successful QBRs. To learn more about how we can help, schedule a demo with our team today.