Sales Compensation--Fair Play, Fair Pay
Without a plan based on these questions (and answers), it is almost impossible to fashion a sales compensation plan that benefits all.
"As a printing company owner or CEO, you should determine what you're trying to accomplish as a corporation and critically think about how your sales remuneration plan does or does not support what you are trying to accomplish," advises Sid Chadwick, president of Chadwick Consulting, in Lewisville, NC.
"We don't ask ourselves the right questions or look at the ways in which this industry shoots itself in the foot. Our thinking is upside-down," he maintains.
On the other side of the forum, sales gladiators might wrestle with these formidable questions: What are my best skills? What motivates me? What will I need/want 10 years from now? Do I like selling?
In addition, printers should consider the following personnel elements of the compensation issue:
* Personnel: Pillars of Your Temple
What is the mind-set of a successful salesperson? Let's pardon generalizations for a minute and divide salespeople into two groups: "hunters" and "farmers." Let's consider the hunter as someone who thrives on face-to-face cold calling. An aggressive new business seeker, he or she does whatever it takes to land a new account.
By contrast, the farmer may shun cold calling, but enjoys visiting existing clients. The farmer prefers to nurture already-established business.
Which type of salesperson best suits your firm? Where do you place him/her in your organization? How should you compensate him/her? The amount of remuneration depends on your strategic plan and the type of business you wish to develop. However, most printers place an emphasis on new business, thus encouraging hunters over farmers.
"It's hard to find a compensation plan that rewards sales reps for increased business with current customers," notes Chadwick. "Companies pay bonuses for new accounts and lower commissions for increased business."