How to Better Motivate Your Sales Team This Year

managers, Corporate Support, New Year's resolutions

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When I worked in the sales department at a commercial radio station, the sales manager went to the extreme to motivate the sales staff just prior to the fourth quarter in preparation for the holidays and leading into the new year. 

There was a huge kickoff meeting, with sales contests and incentives such as trips, double the sales-commission rate, and cash bonuses. But all the “rah-rah” and pom-pom shaking can’t fix a motivation problem.

Sales reps continually face outside circumstances that affect their motivation. Prospects and customers tell them "no" over and over again; the timing may be wrong to sell a particular sales promotion; or there may be some personal situation going on affecting a person’s ability to sell. 

As a sales manager I know that the motivation of sales people can affect their productivity. With an eye toward improving the success of your sales staff, here are some ideas to boost their motivation. 

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Use Data to Skillfully Manage Down... and Up

PMDMC, managers, Corporate Support

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Every sales manager knows that managing up is as important as managing the reps who report to you.  When the day comes that you are given a budget that you know in your heart is impossible to reach, how do you motivate your team when you don’t believe you can reach the goal? Changing this dynamic was the topic of the 2018 PMDMC 2018 session "Managing Budget Expectations for Your Sales Reps."

Jared Blass from Atlanta Public Broadcasting, Tracy Roe from NET Nebraska, and Tom Smith from KEXP in Seattle shared their advice, offered great worksheets (available in the slides) and emphasized the key role data can play in setting expectations for your sales reps and for your superiors. 

Position your department at budget time.

In fact, telling your department story throughout the year and not just at budget time is important. Make an effort to educate your upper management team on key data such as:

  • Pacing by station/product
  • New business
  • Attrition
  • Renewal

This allows a better understanding of the numbers to set realistic budgeting goals accordingly.

Tom Smith says, “Share your data, all the time, good or bad.  #Sharing is caring!”

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How to Love (or at Least Like) Every Single Sales Meeting

managers, Corporate Support, team-building

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How many SMHs (Sales Meeting Hours) have you endured in the last year? 50? 150? Seemed like more? How many memorable ones have there been? Hmm, not so many?

As sales managers we struggle to come up with inspiring topics to share, to gain participation from our teams, to leave them all charged up on a Monday morning, ready to conquer the world! As sales reps, we wonder why we had to get up so early, what is the purpose? There are better things we can be doing right now! And yet, we do gather weekly and most of the time it’s great to hang out with each other because we are all driven by the same mission and want to succeed. The question is, how do we all make the most of the time and leave feeling invigorated?

In my earlier days in commercial radio I worked for a powerhouse news/talk/sports station in Seattle where we had two sales meetings a week, each at 7:30 a.m. Our bosses wanted us to be at our best, the first ones up, and the first to hit the streets. On Mondays the general manager of the station would open the meeting and he always had something interesting or strategic to share from his senior leadership position. He made us feel like a valuable part of the station, if not the most valuable. And he was a great speaker! I loved those “opens” and always left inspired and feeling like I was part of something much greater than myself.

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12 Pro Tips to Successfully Move From Underwriting Account Exec to Manager

hiring, underwriting, account executives, training, managers, staff, Corporate Support, recruiting, time management, leadership

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By guest author Gina Dragutinovich, Director of Corporate Sponsorship Sales at WUWM 89.7 FM-Milwaukee Public Radio

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