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Adding Recognition to the Sales Compensation Mix

Sales Managers Should Consider Rewarding Salespeople… for More Than Just Closing the Deal

New York, NY. March 24, 2011 — As we emerge from one of the most difficult economic periods in recent history, companies should reevaluate their current compensation plans and consider rewarding sales forces for how they conduct business as well as for closed contracts. Acknowledging the value-building behaviors that are critical to selling success ultimately results in a deeper level of trust and confidence between sales representatives and prospects, and can set a smart company apart from its competitors.

According to the most recent Performance Perspective executive briefing released by Madison Performance Group, salespeople should be rewarded for all the steps they manage through the sales process: targeting, planning, messaging, collaborating and negotiating.

Madison Performance Group is the worldwide leader in developing employee engagement and incentive marketing programs for Fortune 1000 corporations that include CA, Citigroup, Kawasaki and Siemens. The company implements customized strategies to motivate workers, applying proprietary sales and marketing techniques to maximize employees’ success.

As highlighted in the new Performance Perspective, companies should consider adding a recognition element to the compensation mix. The mechanics of recognizing the preparation and professional performance that lead to success—from the initial stage to the completed transaction—can be supported through an intuitive, web-based tool that allows sales managers to set team or individual goals and then reward accordingly.

In 2010, less than half of all salespeople hit or exceeded their numbers. While that may not be surprising, the impact of anxiety on selling behaviors was disturbing. According to Mike Ryan, Senior Vice President, Madison Performance Group, “Added pressure on salespeople propelled them to take shortcuts, to short-circuit the value-building, customer-nurturing processes that worked in better times.”

Compensation plans may reward greatness, but they don’t nurture it. The majority of plans are conventional in nature and do not motivate the behaviors that lead to success. And in today’s economy, salespeople need to become a source of competitive advantage. Integrating a recognition program allows sales managers to nurture and encourage sales professionals to vigorously research prospects and then engage those potential buyers in a consultative and disciplined manner during each phase of the sales process. Compensation schemes should include a subjective element that management can use to reward their sales teams for behaviors that evoke buyers’ trust and lead to business generation and the building of brand advocates.

“Giving managers the tools they need and the discretion to use them allows them the flexibility to effectively set objectives and focus actions on specific targets or within active pieces of business,” says Ryan. “It also gives managers the ability to offer guidance in a manner that supports the larger growth objectives of salespeople. At the same time, the right tools afford the selling organization the control, diagnostics and reporting resources it needs to monitor program activity and utilization.” Ryan adds, “A recognition initiative that celebrates selling skills can be not only effective, but inherently affordable. Salespeople who distinguish themselves at every customer interaction are more successful and profitable than those who don’t.”

“A properly designed recognition program will refocus representatives on the type of preparation and due diligence that leads to better closing rates and higher margins, while also expanding the sales manager’s ability to nurture sales performance at the local level. And neither requires any modification to the current compensation infrastructure,” concludes Ryan.

Media Contact: Ericho Communications Jessica Busch, Senior Account Executive 220 East 23rd Street New York, NY 10010 Phone: 646.507.5836 Email:

About Madison

As a global leader in Social Recognition, Madison delivers intuitive and multi-faceted Recognition, Incentive and Service Anniversaryprograms powered by Maestro, their uniquely configurable cloud-based SaaS technology. Recognition Group Travel, Concierge Travel Arrangements and Corporate Meetings are an integral part of these capabilities. Designed to solve an organization’s unique business issues, Madison’s approach encompasses the totality of a company’s performance drivers and focuses on the individuals responsible for ultimate success–employees, sales and channel partners.

Madison’s performance and sales boosting methods coupled with powerful analytics and innovative solutions give management the power to purposefully engage an audience; measurably identify leadership traits; effectively motivate tangible potential; and sharply incent individuals. Leveraging scientific principles to guide desirable change of human behavior and elevate performance, Madison has been helping clients do more by encouraging their audiences to achieve more for 40 years.

For more information: Madison Email: Phone: 866.535.2543 Fax: 212.308.0646


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