The sales team, likely more so than any other team in the company, is probably the most important team to keep motivated. After all, almost everything else in the company follows sales and if they are not on top of their game they can drag many others down. And what is the best remedy for those moments when everyone is feeling down? Partytime!, right? Well, maybe, but not really that kind of party, but you’ll understand in just a moment. Let’s face it, sales can be hard and it takes a tremendous amount of energy. Salespeople can easily become demotivated by several factors such as uncertainty, stress, rejection, expectations, and competition. It’s not for the faint of heart. Managing salespeople is one thing, motivating them is something very different.
There is one fundamental rule you must always remember with salespeople: Every salesperson always wants to feel as successful as possible. The trick is in knowing what success means to them. Motivation creates success and success creates motivation. It’s the loop we want to find all of our salespeople in, but the chain does get broken from time to time. I mentioned earlier that the best way to motivate salespeople, or anyone, is to ‘party’, and although I’m sure that may be helpful for some, that’s not exactly what I meant. What I meant to say was I party! No wait, that isn’t it. I don’t think the site of me partying would motivate anyone. What I really meant to say was IPARDI which is Inquire, Prior, Aspire, Require, Desire & Inspire. Here’s a snapshot:
Inquire – Find out if everything is okay. It’s the best way to start out a conversation. Identify their despairs and concerns and just listen.
Prior – Acknowledge the salesperson’s prior victories to build their confidence. Understand the process that created success to figure out what worked and why.
Aspire – Create achievable and desirable goals. Help the salesperson visualize success and give them a sense of both value and purpose. Challenge them to try harder or something different.
Require – Every goal needs to have a plan and a path to success. Create key performance indicators to measure success and schedule routine check-ins. Become a partner in their goal and success.
Desire – Motivation without desire is a spark without fuel. Create incentives that are valuable, mutually beneficial, and will reinforce a sense of success.
Inspire – Inspiration is your opportunity to connect with the salesperson’s purpose. Inspiration should be compelling and provide encouragement. Connect it to an impactful vision and create an emotional purpose.