Your sales reps want to succeed, both for themselves and for your company, they just need the right incentives. Every sales leader knows that sales reps are smart, determined people that will employ whatever tools necessary, from sandbagging to stacking sales to winning competitions. So how can you stop the bad habits traditional sales teams fall into while also building results? The best way to generate reliable results and maximize sales performance is by rewarding your teams regularly and often to bake in best daily practices. Here are a few tips to get you started.
Using recognition as a reward
In sales, we always think of rewards as monetary, like a good bottle of wine for the winner of a sales competition or a quarterly bonus for hitting a quota. We’re not saying that these aren’t effective, far from it, but they don’t occur often enough to incentivize reps on a regular basis. Every sales rep has something in common: they love to win.
Although not every salesperson can win every competition, they can earn recognition for their hard work. Having a manager, a VP, or even the CEO calling out great work motivates your sales reps and keeps them working hard on those small daily activities that generate massive increases in pipeline. Best of all, it is completely and entirely FREE, so you can go on keeping your cost of customer acquisition low while motivating along the way.
Short term competitions
Running short-term competitions ranging in length from 1 hour to one week is one of the best ways to boost engagement quickly across your entire sales team. Whether you call them blitzes or competitions, these quick turnaround style competitions inspire your team to perform at their best because everyone has a solid chance to win. Longer competitions have steep engagement drop-offs, as whenever a sales rep feels like they don’t have a chance to win, they completely stop trying. By running short-term competitions regularly, you can engage your entire team by rewarding them often and constantly giving them chances to win.
Reward reps with what they want
No one is going to work hard for something that they don’t care about. For example, if everyone on your team hates wine, that fine Bordeaux you are offering is going to fall flat consistently. Before you start your next big competition, try polling the team to see what they want to win. If you have the software or the capability to do so, allowing your reps to choose their own rewards from a preselected offering is by far the most engaging way to motivate any team.
By recognizing your sales teams’ hard work, running a steady flow of short-term competitions, and giving them rewards they want to win, you will see drastic increases in potential revenue, pipeline, and sales. We’re not telling you to completely throw away the stick, but it’s time for sales teams to make the carrot a bit more enticing.