There are many ways to motivate and encourage employees. Some people like prizes, some like verbal praise and peer recognition and some people are simply self-motivated. It can be a difficult task figuring out what works best in each work environment, especially in a growing company like ours.
In my role, I oversee the task of sending our sales team reminder emails about the current standings of the month. I include the top five reps, the ones who hit quota first, people who have the most new deals, etc. I also include a monthly contest and who is in the running to win.
I add a little flair and encourage some friendly competition between reps, hoping to light a competitive fire that burns through midnight on the last day of the month.
These emails are a brainchild of upper management as they wanted to test a theory about whether goals and incentives motivated and encouraged the reps to perform at a different level.
We wanted to see if the constant, in your face email reminders took the guesswork out of where reps stood and whom they had to beat out.
Ultimately, we wanted to understand if our incentives and motivation made a difference.
It’s been a few months and not only are people reading these emails, they love the competition they bring out. I have received many emails back from the reps with feedback:
“I want that prize…bring it on!”
“I love these emails….I will win this month!”
“ Keep these emails coming. I love seeing who I need to beat out to be number one!”
The sales team does have tools in place where they can see everyone’s standings, but the email format is more to the point and breaks down what they receive at each achievement level.
Along with the positive feedback, I also received a lot of comments from reps who think they may have a higher standing or a different number of deals than I included. I welcome these comments because it means these reps are keeping a pulse on where they stand and what they need to do to get through the month without a constant reminder.
All in all, I think these have been a great addition to the sales structure already in place.
During our 2012 year end marketing retreat, we were lucky enough to sit in on a call from board member Jason Calacanis. What I took away from his discussion was the importance of positive employees. He stressed that we are all brand ambassadors and we need to cultivate a positive morale, so when we are out representing Dyn, we are doing so in a positive light.
I believe positive reinforcement and rewards go hand-in-hand with building positive attitudes in people. If employees are treated in an affirming manner, that will reflect back on the brand. This simple task of reward management is one of many steps in the direction of creating positive employees.