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People don’t always respond well to a one-size-fits-all approach, so motivating sales teams to perform has long been a challenge for business leaders. Different people are swayed by different methods. For salespeople, a system of gamification integrated with a strong visual communication network can provide incentives for all by playing to their motivation style and unique position within the team. Let’s explore.
According to an article in Harvard Business Review, a sales force is best treated as a “portfolio of investments,” and there are three general categories that most salespeople will fall into: stars, laggards and core performers. Employees in each category require a different form of incentive to maximize their potential.
Stars are the most efficient members of the sales team. Competition and rewards motivate them. Gamification can give them a nudge by playing into their competitive nature and innate drive to prove themselves. Leaderboards and contests will be their source of power.
The names of leaderboards projected on digital displays give stars a clear view of their place in the hierarchy. They’ll want to continue pushing to reach the top, so it’s just a simple matter of setting a goal, choosing a prize structure for top performers, and letting their competitive spirit do the rest. Putting limits on stars’ success will cause them to pull back their efforts. The leaderboard puts them in a constant contest with other stars, ensuring that they will be continually motivated to do more.
Gamification can take this concept to its next logical step by allowing stars to challenge one another directly. Face-offs will let two members of your team set a sales goal and a time limit, and then compete to hit the mark first. It’s the ultimate form of friendly rivalry that stimulates stars’ need to show what they are made of.
Laggards occupy the opposite end of the spectrum. Through inexperience or complacency, they perform at a lower level than the rest of the group. They still have to pull their weight, so gamification can cater to them by providing some much-needed (but still friendly) social pressure and rewarding them when they succeed.
Again, the leaderboard comes into play. It will show laggards if they are trailing the pack, and how much extra effort they’ll need to put in to compensate. To get them fired up, you can use the visual communication system to pepper them with motivational quotes and imagery to transform them into better performers. When they start to do better, congratulate them with celebratory messages that highlight their newfound success.
The last group is made up of core performers, who represent the majority of most sales teams. They outperform laggards, but not to the degree that a star does. Core performers are motivated by the combination of pressures and rewards that get your stars and laggards to do their best. You’ll have to gear your contests to still offer some kind of prize to these middle-of-the-road workers (as opposed to a winner-take-all scenario), but the framework is all there with a gamification system in place.
All that’s left now is to put a gamification system in place for your team. Make sure you find a tool or software that fits the needs of your company. Are you more analytical and looking for something with key metrics and real-time data up on your displays? Or are you looking for something that gives you all the bells and whistles that celebrate wins to create a culture of fun and culture? Either way – whether your team is data-driven or interested in building a play-to-win culture, your team will appreciate having a newfound motivation and drive in the workplace.
Interested in bringing gamification to your workplace? Check out Hoopla’s 14-day free trial to get your team motivated and engaged today.
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