Employee recognition, performance planning and sales management perfect recipe for success

By Brian Thompson,

Planning, planning, planning.

Although it is easy to envision the financial possibilities of individual sales planning, the reality is a robust and comprehensive strategy that also includes performance and compensation planning is a necessity for industry leaders' success, according to CRN. 

Planning for individual sales
All companies offer some sort of product or service that requires skilled sales people to close deals with customers, a task that has become increasingly difficult amid an inconsistent and changing U.S. economy. Oftentimes, employers and top company executives designate sales goals, objectives and quotas based on what they believe will maximize profits and what their perception of a manageable workload is. Generally, these plans have traditionally involved little to no input from the actual sales people behind the curtain. 

However, companies should implement sales planning strategies so employees feel they have some autonomy. Collaboration and mentoring are two concepts that John Convery, president and CEO of a Seattle-based consulting firm, recommend.

Senior advisors and salespeople should work together, he said, to accomplish common goals. Many successful companies use incentive compensation management (ICM) software to collaboratively track these sales, in addition to a "What if?" calculator that helps employees manage individual sales milestones.  

Planning for performance and recognition
Many employees find meaning in their work beyond the paycheck, and develop a personal relationship with their job that shapes their perception of themselves and has profound affects on emotional, mental and physical well-being. Because of these reasons, employee recognition is a must for companies who want to retain top talent while acknowledging the achievements of the individual or team. 

Recognizing employees boosts confidence, pride and overall work ethic and can be easily planned for through ICM software solutions. This means employers can integrate professional development plans or milestones into compensation and performance packages that can be tracked through ICM. For example, companies can incorporate accomplishments such as elite sales clubs into performance structures that allow employees to gain admission to additional professional opportunities. 

Planning for compensation
Compensation plans are what set competing businesses apart from each other by their ability to attract, acquire and maintain top talent in their fields. 

All of these practices can be structured to fit into a compensation bundle that ultimately sets the stage for prolonged personal and corporate financial growth. When employees see that there are built-in financial incentives for top tier work, they are more likely to produce results that end with them receiving compensated recognition for their exceptional performance. 

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Brian Thompson