Published On: Mon, Feb 20th, 2017

Sales incentive ideas for staff

Even the most talented and dedicated sales staff will need a little motivational boost every now and again. It’s very easy to lose sight of your goals, or for your enthusiasm to wane. So, how can employers keep their sales staff motivated?

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Here are a handful of tried-and-tested sales incentives and corporate rewards schemes to try, as well as more unusual and creative ideas:

  • An all-expenses paid weekend away. This is a big prize, so the goal needs to be equally ambitious. If you can partner with an organisation, such as a corporate rewards scheme provider, this kind of reward can be much more affordable to implement.
  • One-off bonuses. Bonuses and monetary rewards can be big motivators for sales staff, but you’ll need to be careful that the bill for these bonuses doesn’t get too expensive. You could end up wiping out all of your extra profits if you’re not careful!
  • Time off. If you need an on-the-day push from your team, offer the best performer the chance to go home early. This can be surprisingly effective, especially if it’s been a long, hard day or it’s a Friday afternoon. You can even go a step further for achieving a more challenging target and offer a whole day off – Mondays are a good choice.
  • Food! Everyone loves a free lunch, and this is a great way to give staff an extra push for those smaller targets just when their motivation is flagging. You’ll be amazed what people will do for free food!
  • Awards. People may say they don’t care about awards, but deep down – everyone loves to be recognised and valued for the hard work they do. Consider introducing an annual awards scheme (perhaps with cash prizes) with different categories and perhaps plan a glitzy ceremony to celebrate the winners. Think carefully about how the winners are chosen though, as staff voting could turn it into a popularity contest.

Making it interesting…introducing a competitive element

One of the most effective sales incentive tactics used by organisations is to pit employees against each other. You can use goal tracking software to keep a real-time leaderboard of the whole team, so that staff can actually see the moment when they edge ahead of a colleague or fall behind. Most employees won’t be able to help getting wrapped up in the competition, and the desire to beat their colleagues will push them towards achieving ever more ambitious goals.

Of course, this ‘gamification’ of sales does carry the risk of exposing and demotivating poorer performers if they can’t keep up. If a salesperson is regularly at the very bottom of the leaderboard, they won’t be motivated for very long – they’ll soon feel like giving up. The way to prevent this is to pit colleagues against each other in teams, so that everyone gets the support and mutual motivation of the team. No one wants to let other team members down and staff can share skills, tips and techniques. They can bolster each other and deliver better results overall.