As a sales manager, you’ll be all too aware of how important your sales team is to the overall performance of your business. Strong performance from your sales team can make all the difference when it comes to your bottom line every financial year,  but no matter how smart your sales team are, they’re unlikely to perform at full capacity if morale is low.

Low confidence and motivation have been proven to impact productivity and competitiveness, and can spread quickly throughout your company. If you suspect your business isn’t performing as effectively as it could, it may all come back to the mood of your office. Here’s how you may be damaging your sales team’s morale – and how you can turn it around.

You’re not paying them enough

Salespeople expect to be rewarded for their efforts, especially when they’re hitting and surpassing their targets. They are naturally money-driven, and if a high performing sales team doesn’t see opportunities for increased bonuses, promotions or raises after being successful, they are likely to move on.

Whether you pay your salespeople commission, salary or both , you need to make sure this is in line with what the rest of the market is offering, and commensurate with their experience and added value. If you want to hold on to your sales stars, fair and competitive remuneration is one of the best ways to do so. Unappreciated employees end up costing your business more in the long run, as those who feel underpaid are likely to lose motivation to chase sales and will eventually look elsewhere, resulting in costly recruitment and onboarding for your business. Employee recognition is cheaper than churn, so pay attention to what you pay your team.

You don’t have an open-door policy

You’re likely to see a decrease in morale if employees don’t have the opportunity to contribute their concerns and ideas to their sales leaders. A relaxed, informal open-door policy creates a sense of freedom for staff to voice their opinions and express concerns and suggestions – and your willingness to take time out of your day to engage with your salespeople may even encourage motivation and stimulate your employees to perform more productively and efficiently. For a best practice open door policy, provide regular and informal feedback to help cultivate a responsive sales environment. Similarly, reach out to your team and ask them for feedback, rather than waiting for them to come to you. Most importantly, if you say your door is always open, make sure you walk the walk! Try to avoid responding to your sales team with “I’m too busy”. Make time for your team and you’ll likely find them to be more motivated to chase those sales targets.

You haven’t set defined goals and targets

Salespeople are competitive and thrive on having clearly defined targets and goals. However, too many sales managers set goals that are poorly defined or difficult to quantify. If goals set by sales leaders are confusing – or your team is unsure about how their bonuses are calculated – this will lead to dissatisfied salespeople and ultimately undermine the trust between sales reps and their managers. The team will become frustrated and morale will be damaged – and you likely won’t make target!

Find out how to set smarter sales goals for your team to help keep their morale high and ensure they’re motivated to work hard.

You’re not developing your sales team

Salespeople respond extremely well to coaching, with 87% of millennial and 69% of non-millennial workers saying development is important to them in any job. Your sales team will always want to learn and develop within their roles and advance to new levels and positions. If they aren’t supported by their leaders, they’re likely to get frustrated and lose interest in their jobs. Mitigate this by clearly defining your team’s goals and objectives, put the time in to coach your salespeople and empower them to develop independently. Encourage them to read industry updates and educate themselves on their markets, as well as offering training to ensure they feel supported in their development.

Overworking your sales team

A positive work-life balance is high on the agenda for every job seeker in the 21st century, with just one-third of British employees happy with their current level of work-life balance. Salespeople will experience natural ebbs and flows of work in line with seasonality and ends of quarter and financial year, but in general, it’s important to ensure no one is being over-worked. Your staff will be happier, healthier and more motivated if they have the time and freedom to enjoy their lives outside of work as well as in it.

Hire the best with BMS

Once you’ve addressed these five ways you may be destroying your sales team’s morale, you need to ensure you’re hiring the right salespeople to add motivation and productivity to your team. At BMS, we can help you attract, recruit and retain the right salespeople for your business. Find out more about how we can support your sales recruitment and function.