Employee Engagement Rewards

3 Creative Incentives to Motivate Your Sales Team


It seems like a no-brainer: A compensation program that rewards and encourages top performers with cash bonuses. It’s nice, convenient, and expected. While monetary rewards seem like a tried and true motivator for sales teams, recent studies have shown that these incentives don’t actually increase motivation in the workplace.

Instead, cash incentives only work in the short term and have the lowest impact on motivation. Think about it like this: the only times you get a boost of energy and motivation is when it’s nearing the end of a quarter and you need to meet your quotas, or it’s the beginning of the quarter and you’ve got some targets you know you want to hit. But this drive only lasts so long. Cash bonuses aren’t kept top of mind to continually drive the right habits and long-term motivation for success. So, what can you do? Try these sales incentives to keep your team motivated throughout the entire year.  

1. Awesome Trips

There’s nothing like a good getaway to reset and refresh yourself. When you’re stuck in that 9-to-5, the days can start to blend together and gray out. Your wallpaper of the Bahamas on your Macbook is starting to look like an unreachable destination. But, you know, it doesn’t always need to be an extravagant trip and maybe your company can’t afford it.

And that’s okay. What’s not okay is dismissing this idea altogether. An easy way to get your team out on fun trips and out of the norm of Netflix and Chill weekends is through Blueboard. This is something we do here at Hoopla and I. Love. It. Without Blueboard, I never would’ve made a trip to Aquarium of the Bay to feed the sharks. The experience was truly amazing getting up close and personally feeding them fish one toss at a time. Events and activities are kept mostly local to your area so you have the convenience of a quick getaway.  

2. The Gift Of Time

Time is money. Really, it is. You’re literally getting paid for your time at work. That’s why it’s easy to understand why it’s so extremely hard for people to take their vacation days even with the unlimited PTO trend going around startups these days. More than 55% of Americans aren’t taking their PTO days per year.

It’s hard to gauge what’s appropriate in terms of how many days you should take off each year. Should you spread it out? Should you take a long vacation with consecutive PTO days? If your company doesn’t have the luxury of unlimited PTO, give your staff those extra PTO days and encourage them to take it. If you have that luxury, well, do just the same. When you give your team that work-life balance and flexibility to control their own schedules, they appreciate you all the more. Because when they’re happy, you (and your pockets) are happy.  


3. Recognition

If you tell me you’ve never been caught up on being #1 in a race, I call bull. It’s natural to want to be #1. Whether it’s a race to the kitchen for the last cookie, or a race to be at the top of the sales leaderboard this week, we’re all aiming to first on that list. Why is that? Recognition. Recognition, unfortunately, seems to be in rare form nowadays — especially in the office.

Even as children, we loved getting that gold sticker on our homework folders. It was a form of praise, an accolade, recognition for our efforts. That’s really all we need sometimes: to be appreciated for our work. Leaderboards and breaking news alerts for reaching milestones is an easy (and automated!) way to get you and your team recognized for your efforts and progress.

Sometimes, we forget there’s a person behind each deal closed, each meeting booked, each contract negotiated. Hard work goes into each of these activities, and it’s tough getting through them when no one notices. So, maybe you’re not ready to try leaderboards with your team. No worries. The next time you see a fellow sales rep, extend your hand out. Because, sometimes, all you need is a high-five.  

 Hope you found these sales incentives helpful. If you’re a sales manager, try at least one of them with your team this quarter. If you’re a rep, bring it up with your manager! They can’t read your mind, so let them know what motivates and drives you to be a better performer. You got this. ✋