Money speaks. However, this will not encourage your sales crew. Motivation goes beyond statistics. Sales executives must find methods to spark the inner drives of salespeople to win, have fun, perform better, and be acknowledged.
You must reward salespeople properly, with an obvious framework and consistent frequency. Use motivating strategies that vary often and are targeted to salespeople, in addition to monetary compensation.
These 21 concepts are effective
1. Promote and reward initiative
Encourage salespeople to be entrepreneurs by fostering business ideas in the same spirit as cooperation. Allow them the time, flexibility, and space to experiment with their ideas (with just enough supervision from you to ensure they’re not chasing rainbows or squandering time and money.)
Reward them for coming up with creative ways to grow market share and attract new clients. Give more points for ideas that are executed, and even more points for ideas that work.
2. Make work more meaningful
According to Harvard Business School study, people who find meaning in their job – those who leave virtually every day feeling good about what they accomplished – are more motivated and dedicated.
Until you assist salespeople understand their role in achieving altruistic objectives, the company purpose and values are simply words. They may solely perceive their objective as bringing in accounts and producing money for the firm as salesmen. Understanding the social purpose of your product or service, as well as the influence it has on individuals and communities, can provide true drive.
Collect client success stories on a regular basis – what they’ve accomplished or how your product or service has made their life simpler. Take them to everyone in the business, since it’s critical that those outside of sales understand the significance.
3. Make people feel appreciated
While salespeople need to find meaning in their work, they need to feel their work is valued by their boss and company to stay motivated, a study by the American Psychological Association found. Praise is an excellent place to start, and explaining why what they’ve done is a better way to end.
Five strategies for making salesmen feel appreciated:
- Invite them to participate in decision-making.
- Provide possibilities for progress and growth.
- Make employment arrangements that are flexible.
- Make a fair and reasonable compensation, and
- Provide non-cash benefits that are meaningful to them, like as time off, public recognition, opportunity to contribute or lead, and so on.
4. Prioritize: cooperation over competition
Salespeople are naturally competitive, yet competing against each other may produce bad motivation. It causes some people to neglect their coworkers and others to resent them.
Foster collaboration above competition, and it’s more likely everyone will be motivated. The purpose is to compete against other competitors, not against one another. Encourage cooperation through rewarding mentorship, knowledge-sharing, and collaborative efforts to beat the competition.
5. Be cautious about who you do business with
Deal closure is critical to the bottom line. Closing transactions with clients they enjoy is vital for salespeople’s morale. The bottom line will very certainly follow. Troy Hazard, an entrepreneur and sales coach, offered his own evidence that this strategy works to encourage salespeople: He recognized that 60% of his company’s clientele weren’t individuals his crew liked, respected, or trusted.
He did not fire those clients, but he did instruct his sales crew to concentrate on their business ideals. “Beginning today, our new criterion for taking on new business will be that we like the customer and that they are willing to pay our pricing,” he stated in a memo. Do not deviate from this and listen to your intuition, and do not try to fit any potential clients into our culture, people, or what we stand for.” Morale quickly improved.
6. Rejoice in small victories
You don’t have to throw a celebration every time a salesperson gets a meeting. According to another Harvard Business School research, when little successes are acknowledged, morale skyrockets. Small victories have a disproportionate impact on raising spirits and modifying the sense of difficulty.
Recognize tiny victories with written or verbal appreciation, such as advancing a prospect one step farther down the pipeline. Save the great celebrations for bigger group victories.
7. Encourage everyone to keep note of their victories
It’s common in sales to concentrate on setbacks and rejections since they happen more often than modest and significant triumphs. Encourage salespeople to concentrate more on successes by encouraging them to log daily wins – even if they are simply little things that make them happy, like a nice chat with a client – and send you a note about them.
Compile at least one of each salesperson’s successes into a weekly “win message” to the team. Include victories in areas that are essential to your company, such as professional growth, knowing the industry, obtaining a head start on the competition, and/or negotiating a first-time transaction.
8. Publicly congratulate the group
Small-win recognition is effective (particularly for salespeople who are uncomfortable with public praise – and, sure, some salesmen are). Public acclaim for the squad boosts morale double over.
The first dosage is your praise at a meeting or a shout-out in the workplace while everyone is present. The second dosage is colleagues discussing the victory and applauding one another.
9. Maintain an optimistic attitude
Anyone in the sales business experiences rejection, rage, and bewilderment on a weekly, if not daily, basis. It’s difficult to rise above all the challenges and stay motivated day-in, day-out.
Sales executives must act as cheerleaders in this situation. Three crucial points:
- Recognize salespeople’s concerns and losses, but don’t repeat them.
- Recognize difficulties, but maintain the emphasis on personal objectives and organizational values by using constructive language and ideas.
- Recognize obstacles and worries, but continue to take and encourage chances.
10. Form a team
Team-building events often elicit more eye rolls than enthusiasm, but research shows that they do improve morale and staff retention.
The objective is to get the group to connect, have fun, and learn in a natural manner. Avoid embarrassing games or emotional sharing, whether official or casual.
11. Introduce them to their future profession
Link today’s actions to tomorrow’s profession to encourage salespeople who are interested in a career path. Assist them in charting a route to their professional objectives, which may include rising forward within your organization, entering a different field, or starting their own business. Allow them to participate in day-to-day activities that will help them develop the abilities they will need to attain their long-term employment aspirations.
One caveat: Recognize that not all salesmen desire to advance in their careers. Some individuals are delighted – and driven – to work as salesmen because they would rather serve customers than manage employees. Before you teach someone how to climb a ladder, find out who doesn’t want to.
12. Prepare for the ‘fire drill.’
Sales executives that stay involved in the sales process without micromanaging are more attentive to salespeople’s daily problems. According to Jaimie McFarlin, Executive Director of AdmitLink Consulting, salespeople are driven when they believe their superiors have empathy and are easy to reach if the salesperson has to pull a “fire alarm” for rapid assistance. Knowing your employer has your back is a great way to raise your morale.
13. Inform / Educate them
The opportunity to learn more about their industry, customers, products or services, and other subjects that will help them do better at work and in life motivates most salespeople.
Encourage them to learn more by scheduling time and expectations for them to attend virtual and offsite educational events (not just sales events). Direct them to pertinent seminars and podcasts. Give them some books.
14 Provide incentive options
Every salesman is driven in a unique way. Some individuals will be persuaded by one advantage while others will be compelled by another. One bonus will appeal to the majority, while another incentive strategy will pique the interest of a select few. (That rings true for all the techniques we’ve outlined here. You’ve been advised that not all of these will always work for everyone!)
Allowing salespeople to choose their own rewards is a universally effective way to encourage them. According to an Aberdeen research, organizations that used various types of incentives had 33% more salespeople reach quota and a 23% higher rate of team quota attainment.
Provide a choice of incentives within your budget range and create targets that salespeople can realistically achieve so that they are driven to achieve the rewards they want.
15. Strengthen essential ties & relationships
When attempting to inspire a sales staff, it’s easy to ignore the apparently little items that have a de-motivating impact. Some major issues include finger-pointing, conflict, silos, and backstabbing among vital sectors such as marketing, customer service, and development.
Sales executives who cultivate positive ties between their salespeople and other departments have greater morale than those who enable contentious interactions. Bring the groups together to discover methods to improve communication, work on customer-focused initiatives more often, and celebrate group successes.
16. Be a dedicated and strategic coach
Sales managers are often the primary coaches for salespeople, and they may only turn up to teach after blunders or defeats. Then salesmen equate coaching with failure, which is a major setback for their morale.
Motivate salespeople by demonstrating a commitment to coaching – time spent praising, growing, and improving, as well as time arranged strategically to assist when needed.
17. Play games correctly
There’s no lack of advise on gamification, daily or even hourly contests, bracket tournaments (a la March Madness), and the like. And practically every sales organization has utilized a competition to inspire salespeople at some point.
Whatever sort of games and contests you organize, keep the following crucial success factors in mind:
- Keep it short. Even if the reward is substantial, the motivating benefits of any competition are fleeting. Salespeople will be enthusiastic to participate for a few weeks, and the winners will be ecstatic for just a few days.
- Maintain simplicity. Each competition should be designed to encourage a specific behavior (for example, making more calls, setting up more appointments, closing more deals).
- Results will be broadcast. Real-time results are ideal so that salesmen may know where they stand throughout the competition. This is available in most sales and CRM applications.
- Make it a collective effort. We understand that not all sales leaders have enough salespeople to have a team competition, but if you can, go ahead and do it. Team-based tournaments foster camaraderie and encourage greater generosity and justice. Individual contests (sadly) often result in accusations of cheating and stacking the odds. Team contests help level the playing field: top individual performers will not always win, and poor performers will not always be disappointed.
- Involve executives. Request that the C-level provide praise and encouragement along the route. Even if you don’t win, being acknowledged by CEOs might drive you.
- Maintain its freshness. Continue to conduct the same short-term sales competitions. Create unique measurements, themes, objectives, and incentives depending on the demands of your business and sector.
18. Manage with adaptability
You may be the sales team’s leader, but you do not have to be the same leader to everyone. Managing in a single manner, pushing your will and imposing your methods will harm morale – regardless of the strategy you use.
To encourage salespeople, manage them in a manner that suits their work styles. Ask questions like these to identify how you want to guide each salesperson:
- How frequently do you want to communicate – multiple times a week, weekly, every two weeks?
- Do you prefer private or public compliments?
- What type of feedback are you looking for?
- How do you want me to provide feedback to you – face-to-face, in writing, via coaching, etc.?
- How involved do you want me in your selling process?
- How will you inform me of your worries and achievements?
19. Allow them to be heroes
Heroes are driven to accomplish the most unusual things under the most adverse conditions. Doesn’t it seem like a sales environment?
“In a number of ways, leaders may (and should) recognize, promote, and reward the heroic salesman, including promoting and rewarding risk-taking.” Tolerate a fair amount of failure, and back those who execute on big ambitions,” writes Andy Gole, president of Urgency Based Selling and author of Innovate Now – Scale up with 16 Sales Breakthrough Techniques, in Forbes Councils.
Gole proposes the following to encourage heroic salespeople:
- Support creativity, discovery, and risk-taking in an intelligent way. When they are done successfully enough to produce favorable results, salesmen will feel like heroes.
- Assist salespeople in communicating their strong convictions. The more salespeople see the benefits of your goods and services, the more they’ll believe in what they’re selling. Their clients’ good sentiments will grow as they achieve.
- Rest should be encouraged. Allow salespeople the time and tools they need to develop a “meditative mentality.” Mediation, yoga, and other relaxing techniques assist them in avoiding burnout and remaining heroes.
20. Empower and elevate
We’ve previously established that training and giving purpose to work are crucial variables in salespeople’s success. Leaders, however, cannot just cross them off the list after monthly product training and a vision statement.
According to Deb Calvert, author of Stop Selling & Start Leading and creator of The Sales Experts Channel, motivation comes from assisting salespeople in increasing their capacity, confidence, and competence (enablement), as well as making them feel valued (ennoblement).
Ask yourself on a regular basis whether your expectations are acceptable and if you have adequate resources to achieve them. Praise what they’ve achieved and shown, and you’ll increase their confidence and competence. Then explain why it’s vital to you, executives, customers, and the future of the firm, and you’ll satisfy the urge to feel significant.
21. Provide them with fuel
Salespeople have demanding careers and lifestyles. Many people travel. Most people go above and beyond. This may result in an unhealthy balance of diet, exercise, and sleep. When they are out of balance, motivation suffers.
Leaders must maintain a close check on the metrics as well as the physical well-being of their salesmen. If salesmen confess to or seem to be sleep deprived, offer time off or merely a nap. Provide healthful food on-site, as well as information regarding on-the-go nutrition. Encourage them to exercise and relax in their preferred, healthy ways.