Earlier this month, Forbes.com published an article Top Inside Sales Challenges in 2015. In their survey of 200 companies, the third place challenge for both sales managers and inside sales representatives is motivation. The recommendation for sales managers is to focus on employee engagement, recognition, achievement and personal satisfaction. Here are three ways I’m engaging our sales team to stay on top of their game:
- Focus meetings (weekly or bi-weekly) to discuss current results and set small weekly goals or action plans to help them achieve quotas. In addition, we discuss and capitalize on successes and review challenges and find ways to overcome them.
- Monthly sales meetings to celebrate previous month’s success and recognize top performers. While we like to think failure is not an option, it happens. We talk about what happened and how we can improve.
- Random emails, handwritten notes or verbal messages throughout the month to praise, encourage and inform.
You’ve heard the saying, “A little competition never hurt anyone” and that is certainly true in our department. Our sales team loves healthy competition or a contest every now and then to break up the monotony and inject a little fun into our day. Here are a few ways we compete:
- Leader board – a public display of individual standings from first to last place, updated daily.
- Freaky Friday – impromptu and random daily competition usually tied to behaviors that help achieve results.
- Waffle Wednesday – because who doesn’t love a good waffle every now and then. I stole the idea from a friend of mine, and turned this into a way to recognize positive behaviors and results, or to encourage more activity, fueled by carbs!
- Monthly sales contests – with both individual and team components to help motivate individuals and encourage teamwork.
- Reward quickly to maintain enthusiasm for your program.
- Offer incentives based on product types.
- Personalize rewards with gift cards to an employee’s favorite store or restaurant.
- Non-monetary rewards motivate too! Casual days, free lunch, paid time off and those delicious waffles I mentioned earlier are all ways we reward in our department.