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September 7, 2022

6 Techniques to Motivate Your Sales Team

Did you know that a motivated sales team is happier, healthier, and sells more? Sounds obvious, but for some sales leaders what isn’t always obvious is how to properly motivate their team members to drive sales.

In general, sales leaders can improve their team’s performance through two veins — training and motivation. The best sales leaders strike the right balance between training, enablement, technology, and incentives to keep their teams motivated and hitting their targets.

As burnout becomes increasingly common, it’s more important than ever for sales leaders to build trust on their team through upskilling, emotional intelligence, and incentives. Managers who 1) understand that motivation factors vary by team member, and 2) base their approach to motivation on both individual and team-wide factors, will be most successful in keeping their team engaged and hitting revenue metrics.

6 techniques to motivate your sales team:

  1. Build Trust
  2. Set Goals
  3. Ask your team what motivates them
  4. Build a culture of recognition
  5. Roll up your sleeves
  6. Invest in gamification
Build Trust

Without trust, there is no possibility for motivation. If your team doesn’t trust you, they won’t buy in to what you’re trying to sell (pun intended). A lack of motivation and trust on the team also diminishes your power to inspire as a leader. In addition, you risk team members not being honest with you when it comes to sharing challenges and ambitions they set for themselves and their future in the company. 

By building trust, sales leaders are able to break down barriers with their team members and get to the core of what drives them day in and day out. From my experience, the best way to build trust with your team is to practice transparency from the onset. Making sure to start the relationship off with honesty is crucial for building long term-trust across your team.

Set Goals

Goal setting is a great way to ensure your team members have a good pulse on their performance. That being said, different members view success in different ways, which becomes critical for motivating individual team members. For example, some folks may be motivated by competition. Others may be motivated by their impact on the team. Some may be motivated by seeing personal improvement, both quantitative and qualitative.

Understanding the type of motivation excites individual members can give you insight into what goals to set for the individual and the team. Additionally, it’s important to set both short-term and long-term goals. Setting different goals for different members allows you the flexibility to build a program that fits all personality types and ensures every rep feels seen. 

sales gamification built for teams on HubSpot

Ask your team what motivates them

If your sales team is anything like ours, it’s filled with a variety of personality types. Understanding your reps is one of the most important steps when it comes to motivating them. But that raises the question: how do I figure out what motivates my team members? 

I’ve found the best way to find out is to simply ask.

Here are some questions you can ask your reps to help you figure out what motivates them.

  1. How do you like to receive recognition?
  2. What gets you out of bed in the morning?
  3. How do you deal with stress?
  4. How do you want to be rewarded?
  5. What is one personal and professional goal you have in the next year?
Build a culture of recognition

Another critical piece of team happiness and motivation is recognition. What separates good sales leaders from great sales leaders is understanding how your reps want to receive recognition. Some may simply want a shout out, a thank you, or a pat on the back from their manager. Others may want recognition through a surprise reward for a job well done. Some may not be motivated by recognition at all — but letting them know you recognize the hustle can’t hurt.

Another aspect of building a culture of recognition is fostering camaraderie amongst the team. Here are a few ways to create a space for team members to share and congratulate each other on their achievements.

1. Create a Slack channel

Slack (or Microsoft Teams) is a great way for team-wide recognition, especially for a hybrid or virtual environment. We have a #Rad-Work channel at New Breed where the team highlights the wins of their peers and team members. 

2. Use a win song

We love win songs! When one of our reps closes a deal, we let the office know by sending out an excerpt of our reps favorite closing song

3. Set up a weekly or monthly team meeting

Setting up a meeting for your team to come together and share wins, challenges, and acknowledgements is a fun way to build your team’s culture around recognition.

4. Rep 1-on-1’s

While 1-on-1’s are nothing new, this can be a space for you to touch on individual accomplishments and really tailor your recognition to the specific rep.

Roll up your sleeves

The old adage “lead by example” rings true when it comes to motivating your team. Sometimes the best way to motivate your team is to get into the trenches with your reps. Showing your team you understand the daily stresses of sales not only helps build trust but gives you the opportunity to coach on when and how to leverage the right sales activity.  

That being said, managers have to be careful not to overstep their bounds and create additional friction within the sales process. Additionally, more seasoned reps may take this the wrong way. The best sales leaders know when to lean in and when to be hands off. 

Here are a few questions you can ask your reps to better understand their workstyle and how they want to be managed.

  1. How do you like to receive feedback?
  2. How often do you want me to check-in?
  3. How can I best support you?
  4. If I overstep, will you tell me?
Make sales fun!

A fun team is a happy team — and a happy team is a motivated team. That’s why gamifying your sales process is a great way to insert a bit of fun and competition into your reps day to day. If you’re unfamiliar with gamification, it’s the process of turning tasks and KPIs like sending emails, booking meetings, generating pipeline, and closing revenue into a game. 

Purpose-built for HubSpot, UPonent creates healthy competition and camaraderie, ensuring reps stay motivated and engaged. Easily create contests and competition leveraging your existing KPIs and sales processes to drive behavior adoption and business revenue.

If you’re looking to motivate your team check out UPonent today and get your first 5 seats free!

Sales gamification built for teams on hubspot

Tag(s): Sales Editor Pick

Jay Peterson

Jay Peterson is the Startup Segment Sales Manager at New Breed. Jay is a career sales professional and is passionate about helping startups grow and scale their businesses.


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