Recognition is a key factor in motivating sales staff. Rewarding their efforts can boost the profitability of your shop, and it needn’t cost you a fortune!
True, it’s hardly rocket science, so why is it that lack of recognition is the most frequently mentioned source of dissatisfaction among the retail sales teams we work with?
One of our clients had a menswear boutique. Although it made a steady profit, the owner was ambitious and wanted to boost profits to a point where he could then afford to open a second boutique in a neighbouring town. He had problems motivating his staff and wondered if it was because they were too set in their ways. We talked to the staff, both individually and as a team to find out what the problem was. Quite simply, they didn’t feel appreciated and longed for recognition of their efforts! We recommended that the owner should thank them for their hard work at least weekly and suggested that he introduce a modest monthly prize for the best salesperson, consisting of dinner and a movie for the winner (a meal for two at a local pizza restaurant and a cinema voucher), with a cinema voucher for 2 for the runner up. The sales team loved the new scheme because it gave them something to aim for and made them feel that their efforts were appreciated. A year later, the scheme is still going strong and the owner tells us that he has seen a steady rise in profits since it started.
You may prefer not to offer your sales team any sort of concrete incentive, but don’t forget to tell them when you are pleased with them or to remind them that you appreciate their efforts towards the success of your business.
Thierry Bayle, Global Fashion Management