Someone from the sales team is often the first point of contact for external or inbound calls and they can heavily impact a business’ overall reputation and growth. This means retaining the best of them is crucial to your firm’s existing and future success.
There are many different ways you can keep hold of the best sales team and avoid making your employees feel like just another stat in the corporate machine. From a strong pay plan to well executed individual recognition and team incentives like trips, there are lots of ways to motivate your sales team. Here are my top five tips for retaining them:
Take time to recruit the right sales team
This may sound obvious, but ensuring you have the right sales team from the get go will help you keep the best people in the long run. It’s important that anyone in a position to sell your products or services to new clients is fully behind your business goals and buys into your company ethos. Although recruitment consultants can be helpful in some cases, utilising existing networks and social media channels is a great way to find like-minded people who will bring real value to your business.
Another aspect to remember is your current team composition. The sales team works closely together, collaborating on big projects and best practices for selling the business in the best light. When hiring new employees, think of what personalities you already have and how new people will blend with the current team. There needs to be the right balance of experience, personalities and knowledge within the team for it to be a success.
Ensure you have the right level of “healthy” churn
There’s a distinction to be made between healthy and unhealthy rates of churn or turnover of staff. Over 40 per cent of churn is bad because it creates continuity and often performance issues. Customers don’t know who is looking after their services or who to go to when they have a problem. This often means minor issues get escalated to senior management unnecessarily. However, under 20 per cent churn means employees could be too comfortable and the team is not dynamic or driven enough. Things might need shaking up if ideas seem stale or processes stay the same for years regardless of advancements in technology.
Tackling unhealthy levels of churn can seem overwhelming at the beginning. Always try to take a step back and understand why it is happening. Is it the boss not valuing or recognising the efforts made by staff? Is it a struggling market where the targets and the market don’t match up? It could be a case that the good sales people are saying goodbye whilst the people that aren’t so good stay out of fear. Understanding the underlying reasons as to the levels of unhealthy churn is the best place to start.
Read on to find out how to motivate the sales team.
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