I often hear managers and business owners proclaim, “I
shouldn't have to motivate my salespeople. They have a great compensation plan
and a terrific opportunity with my company!”
If you manage a sales or business
development team, I believe that motivating them is one of YOUR
responsibilities. However, doing this effectively is one of the top sales
Your top performers need to be
motivated on some days, and everyone else on your team probably needs it every
day. Most business owners and managers attempt to motivate their team in a
manner that's consistent with a belief that their salespeople are motivated for
the same reasons they are. Certainly, you know this is not the case!
But do you
really know what motivates everyone individually on a personal level? Do you
know their personal financial goals? Education goals for their children?
Vacation dreams? What their dream home would be like? Unfortunately, most
managers have never been trained on the methods for motivating sales
professionals, and some resort to a "Mike Ditka" approach in an
effort to charge up their people.
At least once a year, take your team through a goal setting process. Have them write down their financial goals, but more importantly, their personal and family goals. Meet with them individually to review this. When you do this everyone will always provide an income goal that is higher than what they have previously made. Be prepared to ask these questions:
"Why did you pick that income level?"
"You've never earned that before, why will you achieve it this year?"
"Why do you really need to make that much money?"
"What happens if you don't achieve that goal? Does it really have an impact on your personal life?"
These questions will help the individual understand that this is their goal - not one that you need for sales forecasting. Spend the time talking to each individual about their personal and family goals. Your sincere interest here will send a strong message to that individual, and your effort in doing this will help you identify which goal(s) this person is most passionate about.
The more you know about your people, the easier it is to understand what they want and why they do the things they do. Once you know your people at this level, you can design individual motivators that really work, and armed with this you will now become incredibly empowered as a motivator.