How to Increase Your Sales Team Motivation to Win

Sales Management | Sales Leadership

On this episode, Morgan Pierce, Senior Director of Product Marketing at Altify asks: How do you motivate your team to win? Norman talks about the importance of motivating your team and six key factors that drive sales motivation.

 

to be the first to watch new episodes. 

 

Video Transcript

That's a great question. When I reflect on the best managers that I've worked with, they're the ones that can motivate and influence their team. But there's a misconception out there that to motivate or influence your team, you've got to be this great, charismatic leader.

While being charismatic doesn't hurt, the more important and scalable quality is managers that care about their teams and take the time to understand what's important to each member of their team.
 
There are two typical problems that we see. One is the manager falsely assumes that whatever's going to motivate him or her will also motivate their team. But sales teams are pretty diverse and there are many different motivators that may be important to each individual.
 
The other problem that we see is that there's this misconception about salespeople, that it's all about money. While money is important, there are many other considerations. What we find is that motivations fall in one of the following six categories: money, opportunity, teamwork, independence, visibility, and excellence.
 
Also keep in mind that these motivations may change over time. For example, if someone's getting married or buying a new home, money may become more important for a period of time, and also there's going to be one or more motivators.
 
Let's discuss each of these and what you can do as a manager to increase your sales team motivation to win. 
 
Money, or better said, what money can buy. If you're trying to support someone who's motivated by money, you want to be able to relate sales results to financial goals or may even consider adding incentives for higher performance. For example, a higher commission rate for sales above quota.
 
Opportunity. When someone talks about opportunity, they're thinking about career growth or advancement. What you want to do to support that type of motivation is have some discussion about how success can lead to advancement. You may want to sight how that's occurred for others or you may want to delegate responsibilities to help someone prepare for career advancement. For example, having them mentor a new salesperson.
 
Teamwork. People motivated by being a part of a team. Particularly, that's true with millennials and you see this whole concept of social networks. So you may want to ask them to lead a team project or provide some team recognition. For example, you may want to set up a team incentive if the team achieves a certain sales call.
 
Independence. People who choose sales because they want to operate independently. Often we call this the lone wolf—where you have this feeling of empowerment and freedom. To support that motivation provide greater autonomy. But one caution I would add there, you need to make sure they're accountable. In other words, that autonomy is earned.
 
Visibility. Salespeople motivated by recognition. Make sure that they know and hear that they're contributions or success are appreciated and valued. If appropriate, you may want to share their accomplishments in a group setting or send an email and copy your own boss so they understand that what they're doing is important.
 
Excellence. There's a lot of people today who want to take pride in doing a great job. To reinforce that, compliment them on the high quality of their work and what it means not only to you but more importantly to your customers.
 
So as we've discussed, there are many different motives that may be important to salespeople. That could be money, teamwork, opportunity, visibility, and so the question that it begs is, well, how do you know?
 
It's not that complicated. All you have to do is observe them on a day to day basis and see what they're doing, and then start asking them, "What do you like most about your job?"
 
By taking the time to observe the behaviors and have genuine conversations, you're going to start to get an understanding of what's important to each person, and then based on that, you can start to develop customized plans where you think about how you can reinforce and support their motivations.

SRG Insights is a Q&A video series where we answer your questions on the topics of sales, sales management, sales coaching, and sales training. Featuring sales experts with over 25 years of sales and sales management experience.  

Get your question featured on SRG Insights. Submit your question here

 

Learn how to transition star sales reps into high-performing sales managers

About Norman Behar

Norman Behar is Chairman and Managing Director of the Sales Readiness Group (SRG). He has over 25 years of senior sales management experience, and is recognized as a thought leader in the sales training industry. His blog posts and whitepapers are frequently featured in leading sales enablement publications including ATD, TrainingIndustry.com, and Selling Power.