As I grew as a sales leader, I realized that each person responds differently to motivational influences. I had to learn and understand what it takes to motivate sales contributors.
I once worked with a guy who only cared about was the number of Sales Achievements Awards sitting on his desk. Money was not the motivational factor – it was a nice to have, but he wanted to display his achievements on his desk. I, on the other hand, could not careless about the trophy’s or lead glass achievements that I received. I would toss them in the trash after a few months. All I wanted was the financial rewards. Other people like getting hand written notes, tickets to the theater, sporting event, or have their name published in the monthly newsletter. It’s your goal as a sales leader to determine what motivate sales contributors and cater to their motivational factors.
Expectation and Vision
Defining your expectation of each sales contributor is critical to their success and yours. Salespeople typical break down their quota all the way down to daily sales, but do they know your goals as well. Sitting down with your sales team, collaborating, and outlining your vision of success builds rapport, respect, and credibility with the team. Once everyone is on the same page, it easier to get buy-in on difficult decisions.
One of the best exercises for department team building is by creating a mission statement for the department. Everyone would be required to participate. And each time the team meets, one team member could read the mission statement and ask if everyone is still in agreement?
Assignment of Task
As a sales leader, you typically take on more responsibility than necessary. While this may seem like the proper thing to do, it might make more sense to delegate the task to a subordinate. By delegating the task, you are building up your teams decision-making abilities, improving on your efficiency, and empowering others. Furthermore, by removing yourself from the task, you allow your team to collaborate with other peers, work out the challenges, and possibly provide a solution that is out-side-the-box?
If the task becomes too challenging, gather the team together, organize an open discussion, and allow the team to make the final decision together. Team building also allows for each member to showcase their own talent. This will boost the confidence, motivation, self-esteem, and momentum.
Your Team Needs to Succeed
Many times your sales team will run into road blocks. These road blocks might be as simple as not having the proper sales training for overcoming objections, product knowledge, technical expertise or having the proper sales enablement tools. When this happens, it time to stand up to the plate. Reach out to all the business units. Request the necessary resources (marketing, training, customer service) and fix the deficiency. As a leader, it’s your goal to act as the facilitator of success. You are constantly putting your sales team in a position to thrive.
If you have pre-defined sales metrics in place – whether they are the number of prospecting calls, appointment sets, or face-to-face appointments, make sure the metrics are agreed upon and achievable. By providing the proper training, sales tools, and education, your sales teams should achieve their targeted goals – keeping them highly motivated by the rewards.
Leaders are always measuring success – and success can be defined in many ways. Sales leaders measure their team on an ongoing basis — monthly, quarterly, and semi-annual. Some go ever further by measuring weekly and daily. While there are many positive attributes at micro-analyzing, it’s too much for me. I don’t like to micro-manage anyone. However, by evaluating at a granular level, you’re able to catch a dip in sales or problem early on and possibly help mitigate the problem. On the other hand, if your sales team is excelling, ensure that you acknowledge the success, and the impact its having on the business. Recognizing success helps reinforces the attributes to of great sales leadership, and motivates other teams members to compete for sales recognition, while boosting employee morale.
And finally, one of the best types of motivation is open communication. How many times have you heard “it seems that we never know what is going on in this company?” I hear it all the time. By implementing a monthly newsletter or a monthly conference call, that can be recorded, it builds awareness of what is going on within the company. It provides a vehicle for announcements, promotions, award recognition, community engagement, financial results, and anything you want it to be. By keeping employees engaged in the business activities, you will find that they become more productive, motivated, and ready to take on new challenges.
If you are able to identify the motivational factors of your sales team, paint a clear picture of your vision, build trust and respect, provide leadership and direction, remove road block or barriers, delegate responsibility to team members, praise and reward accomplishments while monitoring KPI’s, you will end up with a team who is eager to help you become the Number 1 leader.