Competitions are an essential part of sales culture. Things like “social comparison theory,” “last place aversion,” and “relative motivation” all help to explain why humans respond to competition and how tapping into our innate competitive sides can drive productivity and goal attainment (in a fun, engaging way).
That's why competitions are such a key component of our platform. We're continuing to make updates to our competitions feature so that you can leverage points-based and multi-metric competitions and create a competition in as few as 3 steps.
Along with these product updates, we want to equip you with the right sales performance management strategy so your contests will impact the KPIs that matter most to you.
1. Sales managers are most effective when managing behaviors or activities. Yes, you need to monitor results regularly to ensure your team is on track for quota attainment and course correct early, but you can’t manage results — only the behaviors that lead you there. For this reason, competitions work best when they're based on behaviors and activities that are 100% under your reps’ control.
Example: Launch a multi-metric competition for the most calls, emails and LinkedIn connects. You can set a max for a metric like emails so that reps aren’t winning solely by spamming emails and ignoring other activities like calls. This is a way to encourage healthy daily habits and reward your team members who are staying on the tasks that deliver the results. And it's much more effective than launching a competition around most revenue booked. Remember: revenue is only obtained by hitting a series of successful activities and objectives.
2. Efficiency metrics are too often ignored or not calculated granularly enough. In our Salesforce KPI report, where we polled over 101 customers, only 58% of them were looking at efficiency rates. These are the metrics where you measure and reward quality over quantity.
Example: Look at competing on connect-to-meeting set ratio over simply number of meetings set. Why? Think about this scenario:
Two Account Executives each make 50 cold calls in the same day. Account Exec #1 sets 5 meetings while Account Exec #2 sets only 3. Account Exec #1 obviously performed better, right?
Well, not necessarily: maybe Account Exec #2 connected with 15 of his prospects, while Account Exec #1 connected with 30. If that's the case, Account Exec #2 actually has a higher connect-to-meeting set ratio, and may actually have a better grasp of how to get a meeting set.
Calls-to-connects and then connects-to-meetings set are great efficiency metric to track to see who needs the most sales coaching around how to set meetings. Activity shows the effort is there. Efficiency shows what is working.
3. Go beyond the “first place finisher” competitions. You have to move the middle to see the best results. You can achieve this with either fantasy competitions or points-based raffle style competitions.
Example: Launch a competition where every 50 calls gets a point. Every point is a raffle ticket. Even when your rep realizes they may not finish first, they have motivation to keep dialing because raffles are a game of chance. They may not win first place in dials, but they could still win the raffle!
For more on the product updates to competitions and competition strategy, checkout our recently held sales competition strategy webinar.
For for more ideas for sales contests or to hear more about how other sales leaders are facing sales challenges, our blog is always a great spot to land!