Sales contests are like adrenaline shots for sales teams. Not only can they be a fun way to spur competition, they can turbocharge team morale and productivity as well. If daily routines have gotten stale, a sales contest can mix things up while fostering a culture of achievement.

A typical sales contest rewards sales reps for the number of sales they make within a set time. However, contests could also be based on other achievements, like the number of cold calls they make or the number of upsells they make.

Sean McPheat, the CEO and founder of MTD Sales Training, says there are many ways to organize a sales competition, from having all sales reps compete against each other to creating teams of sales reps to rewarding multiple people as they reach specific milestones. In this issue of PromoPro Daily, we share McPheat’s tips on how sales leaders can pump up their teams with sales contests. 

  1. Set specific goals. Make sure your sales reps know what they’re working toward. Maybe it’s who books the most meetings or who increases sales revenue the most. McPheat says it’s also important to indicate how long sales reps have to achieve the goal.

  2. Don’t make it complicated. Keep things as simple as possible. McPheat advises clearly outlining the sales contest’s rules and sharing them with the team so everyone is on the same page.

  3. Hold one contest at a time. Some leaders implement too many contest ideas at once. If your sales reps are trying to set records for sales calls and meetings and conversions all at once, it becomes too complicated. It can also stretch sales reps too thin. Be sure you’re just holding one contest at a time.

  4. Ask for and implement feedback. McPheat recommends giving your sales reps an opportunity to share their ideas and feedback for future contests. When possible, try to bring those ideas to life. This can make salespeople more excited to participate in the future.

  5. Communicate often. McPheat advises checking in with salespeople throughout the contest. Ask them what challenges they’re encountering and the progress they’re making. Take time to share your guidance and potential improvements.

  6. Keep it fun. Sales contests should be fun. When salespeople enjoy working toward something, they’re more likely to keep trying their best.

  7. Uphold your end of the deal. When the contest ends, deliver the rewards you promised to your team. McPheat says that if you don’t make good on your promise, sales reps will stop participating. Be sure you promise something you can deliver on. If you can’t give someone an extra paid day off, don’t make that a reward.

Sales contests aren’t just about the win – they’re about the journey. When designed well, sales contests can help sales reps push boundaries and exceed expectations. Consider the tips above to create the most effective sales contests at your organization.

Compiled by Audrey Sellers
Source: Sean McPheat is the CEO and founder of MTD Sales Training. He is also a keynote speaker and best-selling author.