A few months ago I started working with a national sales team. Part of the support has been to help the Sales Manager build in some recognition and incentive processes. One of those is a weekly performance league.
We wanted this to be seen as motivational. All improvements in any of the KPIs achieved by the individual sales team members would be highlighted.
There were some initial concerns that making everyone’s performance visible would cause issues and de-motivate those whose performance was below expectation.
To avoid this there’s a really straight forward answer: when commenting on the performance on the league you just highlight the performances at standard and above standard. Also, importantly: ANY improvement, particularly trends (3 or more consecutive sets of results in an area measured.)
Also just because a performer might be lower in some areas they might be stronger in others. This has the effect of inspiring confidence in an individual who needs it and feels valued by the recognition.
Equally you might have a salesperson who does really well closing opportunities but whose activity rate could be better. If they see that they are close to the top for say, sales revenue but only mid table for Prospecting activity they are likely to raise their personal bar. Particularly if they see their peers improving in that area too.
Apart from only highlighting standard hitting, improvements and above performance results. Here are some more golden rules.
Once you have started a regular league keep delivering it. Aim to deliver it at the same time on the same day of the week. Team members will come to expect it and look forward to it.
Different people respond to different things. Just because 1 or 2 in a team aren’t bothered by something like this, the other 18 in the team respond well, so don’t shy away from it. It might even be you as the Sales Manager who doesn’t like leagues- that’s your opinion, which is fine, the team may love it and improve as a result.
You can develop the idea further and add a monthly and quarterly league too. It’s great to see your team members’ results go up and up. And they appreciate the positive support and encouragement . Plus you create an environment where good things are publicly recognised. This has a knock on effect with management style. We can always do more encouraging!
How have leagues worked in your environment? Are they helpful to you?