Getting the Best Out of Your Top Sales People
When it comes to driving performance in sales, it’s almost pavlovian how executives immediately look to compensation. Some even say sales professionals are coin-operated. While that is a commonly held belief, it’s based in part on a model of sales effectiveness that no longer works. In my experience, sales professionals are no more coin operated than finance professionals, marketers, or executives in the C-suite.
Of course compensation is important to all professionals. But in research
by my friend and colleague at Korn Ferry, Joe Dimisa, it was fifth on the list of what star sales reps seek. Fifth.
Here are four things on the list that are more important than compensation:
- Let your sales reps sell without being hindered. (Remove barriers)
- Provide greater work-life balance and sense of well-being. (Increase flexibility)
- Give them job security and a sense of future opportunities. (Develop their talent and skills)
- Get them excited to work for a company with brand recognition and a strong reputation. (Inspire them and strategically guide them)
As I’m fond of saying about compensation, it won’t make your people better. Compensation applied effectively can help drive focus and may increase effort. But it won’t make people better at what they do. Only leadership that prioritizes developing talent can do that. Don’t jump to compensation and forget to prioritize these important drivers. By giving your sales people the right kind of leadership, you’ll get the best from them.