Sales incentives programmes can be a great motivational tool, but they aren't without problems. Is your scheme in need of a shake up?
Perhaps more than almost any other aspect of a business, the sales department lends itself to the implementation of an incentive programme. Sales personnel are among the most important employees in an organisation, commonly working with a great deal of autonomy. They often generate and following up on leads themselves, without a significant amount of direction from higher up the chain.
This autonomy has given rise to a popular preconceived notion about salespeople, one perpetuated by pop culture. Works of fiction such as Death of a Salesman or Glengarry Glen Ross show us the romance of the profession but can also expose its dark, competitive underbelly. As a result, a poorly designed sales incentive programme can breed a culture of discord rather than one of collaboration.
So, how can your organisation avoid these kind of problems and keep everyone working collaboratively to further your brand?
Keep your incentive programme fun
Working in sales can be an incredibly dynamic, high-pressure occupation, so it's natural that some of that energy can spill over into general office interaction. Setting single targets for salespeople to race each other towards can quickly turn friendly competition into resentment.
One innovation that is changing the way people work towards their goals is gamification, which can take the grind out of employee progression and offer small rewards in the form of virtual trophies or badges. It's a low-cost way to highlight that your salespeople are continuing to 'level up', and a less demanding but more fun method of celebrating sales success in your organisation.
Providing a range of incentives more frequently can help individuals to refine the areas in which they excel.
Spread the incentives
Imagine the frustration of working as hard as possible over a long period to meet a target, only to fall short at the finish line. Hoarding all of your rewards for distribution on an annual or biannual basis can lead to salespeople being unmotivated for much of that period, only to explode into a flurry of activity late in the game.
According to Forbes, providing a range of incentives more frequently can help individuals to refine the areas in which they excel and deliver better performance. A points-based programme where employees can work towards their own individual incentives is a good example, with smaller milestones along the path serving as great encouragement to keep striving for those targets.
Lowering the stakes in this way doesn't mean those big rewards aren't still out there for your salespeople, it simply takes the all-or-nothing element out of the equation, and provides positive feedback on a more regular basis.
Power2Motivate can help with tailoring the most effective sales incentive programme for your business, so talk to us today.