Erik W. Charles

Erik W. Charles

Erik W. Charles is an accomplished professional with three decades of experience in successful marketing and sales operations. His expertise ranges from multinational enterprise firms to small startups, allowing him to craft recommendations tailored to varying market environments, available employee talent pool, and corporate goals. Erik serves as a subject matter expert on the interlocking fields of revenue intelligence, revenue performance, and revenue optimization. He helps companies drive expansion and growth by better aligning messaging, tactics, focus, and motivational incentives with achievable strategic and tactical goals.

He has been integral at multiple start-ups with successful exits, as well as at multinational firms including Canon, Sun Microsystems, Xactly, and Apple. Erik has an extensive consulting and research background focusing on key measures for Sales and Marketing roles, identification of focal points for improvement in customer acquisition and retention, as well as the design and communication of improved incentive plans with strong line-of-sight metrics. He is an early-stage investor and serves as an advisor for venture funds and their portfolio companies.

Most recently, he served as the Chief Marketing Officer and Chief Evangelist for Xactly. Prior to that, he was the VP, Business Operations for Xactly’s Japan expansion, where he built and trained a complete local go-to-market organization, established a localized marketing operation, and onboarded implementation and customer success team members. He worked closely with key partners such as Japan Cloud, Salesforce, Oracle, and Microsoft to drive Xactly's growth in this market. He was regularly featured in the local press on subjects such as market expansion, incentive pay, and sales management.

Erik Charles is a frequent speaker at events such as Dreamforce, Argyle CFO forums, World at Work, AAISP, Sales 3.0, Op Stars, and the Sales Management Association. He holds regular webinars about sales force management, motivation, and optimization. He is a recurring panelist at the Thought Leadership on the Sales Profession Conference, providing market feedback on how leading academic research can be applied to current challenges companies face.

He has been an invited guest lecturer at universities around the globe, including the University of California, Santa Cruz, Brandman University, ICFAI Business School, India, University of Houston, University of California, Los Angeles, and University of California, Irvine.

Erik has a bachelor’s degree from Stanford University and an MBA from the Paul Merage School of Business at the University of California, Irvine. At Merage he serves as a mentor for students, a guest lecturer, and is a charter member of the Dean's Leadership Circle. In his spare time, he enjoys hiking and camping with his wife and two adult sons, stumbling upon small music venues, and collecting and consuming different wines and whisk(e)ys