6 Ideas To Motivate Your Sales Team To Perform Better Each Day
The founder of Ford company, Henry Ford rightly said, “Nothing happens until someone sells something.”
The importance of a sales team cannot be explained in a better way. The sales team plays a pivotal role in the success of any organization. An effective sales team helps increase customer awareness, which ultimately adds to your company’s bottom line.
In fact, the right sales team will take the burden off your shoulders; so you can focus on developing long-term strategies for your organization.
Startups with stronger sales teams have higher chances of success while many other companies offering similar (and sometimes better) products will still fail sustain themselves. In other words, having a good product is not enough. You should know how to sell it to your target audience.
In his article, “Sales is still the most important role in every business,” Graham Hawkins says “Every other business function is redundant if the sales team fails to generate cash flows.” According to him, there are essentially only two roles in an organization; either you are a sales person or you support sales. The digital marketing team, for example, can help the sales team by creating content that will increase reach and ultimately sales.
The importance of an effective sales team cannot be emphasized enough. Hence, it is imperative to keep your sales team motivated and committed to meet the goals of the organization.
Here is how companies can keep their sales teams motivated so that they perform their best;
According to Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, human beings tend to satisfy their basic needs before they move on to higher order needs and money is one of the basic needs. Also, studies have shown that people are only motivated if the recruiting basics are present, which include money, job security and good working conditions. In the absence of these factors, even the best employees won’t perform.
To use money as a motivator, managers can link sales results to financial rewards, plus add incentives such as bonuses for outstanding performance. Low compensation can hinder motivation as well as performance. More importantly, it can create vengeful employees, who become complacent and focus more on the unfairness of the situation.
Money can be a good factor to attract and retain people, however, it is not sufficient to influence their behaviour. According to Frederick Herzberg, the most effective way to motivate people is to realize how they feel about their work itself.
Also, studies by a neuroscientist, Jeffry Schwartz, and an executive coach, David Rock, show that people want to improve their status in a company. Contrary to popular belief, promotion is not the only way to do that. People feel happy even with informal praises given on a daily basis. Hence, instead of waiting for annual performance results to reward employees, managers can try to genuinely appreciate and provide feedback to employees more frequently.
Research shows that the long-term micromanagement can cost a company “low employee morale, high staff turnover, reduction of productivity”.
Autonomy is the opposite of micromanagement. Employees should feel that they have control over their lives and the freedom to voice their opinions without the fear of being shunned. They should also feel that they are indispensable for the organization.
The degree of autonomy can vary though. Employees can have a say in the projects they work on or have the liberty to decide where to work. For sales people, managers can have a ‘flexi-hours’ policy, where they can choose when to work as long as they are meeting their sales targets.
4. Learning and development
By working on employees’ skills and development, a company shows that it cares about their progress. Also, it shows that there is a career path and room for progress in their roles. According to Hays Global Gender Diversity report, 42 per cent women and 58 per cent men believe that they can promote themselves in their current role. However, this can only happen if employers help them progress.
Small companies usually don’t have the budget to send their employees for training programs. Such companies can send their employees to networking events and conferences instead. Another way of honing your employees’ skill is through online videos and modules. Training sales people doesn’t only help them, it also helps the company as sales people with sufficient knowledge and confidence manage to form good impressions on customers.
It is often said that employees don’t leave organizations, they leave bad managers. Employees want their managers to respect them and treat them with dignity. In fact, a good relationship with the managers is one of the most important factors in motivating, engaging and retaining employees. Hence, it is important for managers to spend time building relationship with their employees.
6. Encourage self-care
Most companies offer gym membership and/or yoga classes to their employees. However, when there is no work-life balance, employees don’t really get the time to enjoy such benefits. Hence, companies should encourage a culture where employees know that they have to take care of their well-being so that it doesn’t lead to burn out. This is especially important for sales staff since they have intense work schedules, which can easily tire them out, and sales people need to look fresh and confident in front of customers.
The bottom line is that you can’t buy a person’s loyalty. All you can do is make sure that you provide your employees with an environment that instils in them a sense of belongingness.
You can do that by ensuring that their basic needs are met and the most important basic need is adequate income. If employees think that they are not being paid enough, they won’t take much time before jumping the ship.
Apart from the money, employees are motivated when they get due respect in a company. You can also make the life easier for your sales team by implementing a sales CRM. It will automate most of their tasks, plus a pipeline CRM will also help you track your sales team’s day to day activities.
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