The Behavior you Reward

When it comes to the principles that guide Sales Professional remuneration, in today’s organization, if people are our most valued resources, why should Sales Professionals (Consultants) be treated any differently? They are the frontline people who path the way for the rest of the Organisation to do what they do best – deliver quality (service and product) – the quality that the Sales Professionals promised, in the first place, and are prepared to put their livelihood on the line for.
If the business rewards performance on a risk, as high performance organizations do, typically risk and the associated reward is shared by the collective based on everyone’s performance and contribution based on predefined and mutually agreed metrics. However, with sales people, a higher degree of risk lies with the individual in terms of what is guaranteed remuneration and not. The bottom line here is that if you have a remuneration policy and agreed contracts that reward performance and particularly over-performance, don’t renege on that contract. Do that and you could find your best sales people working for your most aggressive competitor!
The complexity and detail holed up in the remuneration policy and plan is not only an indictment on the Organisation (and not the Sales Professional) but certainly draws attention away from client facing effort. Paradoxically, in the effort to alignment with business objectives, often with the best remuneration intentions in the policy promotes the behavior that is inconsistent with what the business wants to do in the market. You get the behavior you reward!
This goes along with the principle that with more performance management and development attention focused on turning your good sales people into great sales people, substantially better business performance results are achieved. This is in preference to dedicating too much effort into trying to improve poor performance, which tends to be the norm. Quick, decisive freeing up of poor performers to work for the competition also yields a higher net business performance quantum at the sharp end of the business!
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