Personal Development as a Sales Reward
Here's an interesting idea that came out of a conversation with a client...
We were talking about setting goals for improvement, both personal and business. In particular, my client wanted to know how to foster the development of his salesperson. The idea we discussed is worth sharing:
Budget $500 annually and tell the rep to go find a program that he or she is interested in. Set parameters as to what the training can and cannot be (don't let them drop five of your Benjamins on improving their golf swing, for example) and certainly have them run it by you, but give them the flexibility to choose on their own.
Not everything needs to be sales-related or even business-related in order to be effective. They might want to take a Dale Carnegie course or buy a set of CDs from Tony Robbins that have to do with personal growth. These, too, can have a positive effect on sales.
One additional thing: you might want to make this an award for six months of service or after they reach a certain dollar amount; but big, smart companies like Google and Yahoo and Apple do this kind of thing and it's a great way to retain good employees.
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