Donuts for Dollars!
It's an interesting thing managing and leading a sales team. Most of the time, it's all about the dollars:
- How much is coming in?
- What's in the Pipeline?
- Are we on budget?
- How do we get to or exceed budget?
If it's not about the financials, then it's about our valued clients:
- Are we meeting our commitments?
- Are we supporting them correctly?
- Do they get enough attention?
- How do we grow our current relationships?
Lastly, but of course, it's truly my first priority - is my sales team okay:
- Do they have the proper tools to be successful?
- Am I holding them and myself accountable?
- Is our compensation structure competitive?
- Am I continuing to recruit a good fit for our future growth and success?
I go through each of these questions on a daily basis and at times, it can be tiresome because I’m not convinced that I like the answer to each question every day. While it keeps me on my toes and hopefully ahead of the curve, I still have a lot to learn. I'm what one might call a "student of the game". While I don't have video tape that will allow me to study my baseball swing or to study the delivery of tomorrow's starting pitcher, I do have my staff, my clients and industry experts. When I go home each day, I try to ask myself: "did I learn anything new today?" While I'm happy if the answer is "yes", I work twice as hard the next day if the answer is "no".
This week, my favorite lesson came directly from my outstanding team:
While I recognize that my wonderful sales team is focused on making a very good living in the business of recruiting, they have other needs as well. We are in the process of moving and I'm making sure that we have all of the recruiting tools, training tools, entertainment options and motivation tools available in our amazing new office space. But this morning, I learned that it's not always a powerful speech, a good training lesson or an extra % point on their commission that can motivate. This morning, I realized that DONUTS do the trick! I had no idea, but I'm pretty sure this place would shut down without FRIDAY DONUTS! It kills me, because I'm trying to eat healthy, but I do love a good donut from time to time - if you haven't met me in person - believe me, it's clear that I require a more healthy diet. Regardless, the comraderie that is built and the energy that eminates from our kitchen area following the arrival of donuts on Friday morning is fantastic to see and to be honest, something of a mystery. As leaders, I believe we all try to complicate motivational incentives in our teams - I say this with confidence given the amount of money that is made each year by speakers, book writers, and trainers - just on that topic alone. In the end, what my staff has been able to teach me is that there are simple things in life that are to be nurtured, developed and enjoyed. And, with our team, Friday Donuts is on that list.