Outbound Sales Team Remuneration Structure

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I run a business selling products and for past two years we did not do any outbound sales most of theleads we get in through inbound leads via website. I realized I needed to scale things up so I need somebody full time to do outbounds sales. My problem is how do I structure remuneration.

-I want to pay the sales team - basic salary + commision.
-I want to pay commision to the sales team ONLY on the NEW leads.
-I use one email where all the leads come and I want them to enter the incoming leads in CRM and contact them but not to cheat and tell me they generated those leads.
- How do I keep them motivated and maintain honesty in generating new leads and at the sametime maintain and followup with the inbound leads I get on emails?

Any practical tips from people managing sales teams would be highly appreciated
#outbound #remuneration #sales #structure #team
  • Profile picture of the author qu4rk
    This should turn out to be a great thread. My questions for you are:

    How much experience do you have with outbound sales?
    How successful have you been with outbound selling of this particular product?

    I think you eluded to the answer. But if the answer is little to none for either or both, then you have a long journey ahead of you. I've never built a team, but I've had plenty of sales jobs and the worst were those lead by manager/owners who were not sales people. They just didn't get it. And it shows with their business.

    There were a host of problems. Commission, morale, control freaks, not knowing how to nurture talent, not knowing how to deal with a rockstar, etc.

    Others will have more direct answers to your questions. But I hope this helps you.
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  • Profile picture of the author winnerman
    I have a year of experience in outbound sales and I understand it is not easy and it is numbers game and depends on quality of leads to call. I just want to structure so that the sales person remains motivated to maintain and follow up on existing prospects and same time remain motivated to get new prospects.

    Frankly I personally did not try selling using outbound on this product yet but a week trial I found 3 prospects in 25-30 calls made. I am bringing an experienced outbound sales person to form trainign manual , salary structure and form realistic targets. I personally want to move to admin side of business.

    I am surprised there are not many answers to this question.
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  • Profile picture of the author SashaLee
    Originally Posted by winnerman View Post


    -I want to pay the sales team - basic salary + commision.
    Hi there,

    Sounds like a good plan.

    Originally Posted by winnerman View Post

    -I want to pay commision to the sales team ONLY on the NEW leads.
    Sounds like you don't have a way to separate the new from the old customers. If you don't here's an idea. Pay a much lower percentage on the old customers. If they're old LEADS then you should pay full commission. If the new person closes someone you previously couldn't close then you need to pay them. [/QUOTE]

    Originally Posted by winnerman View Post

    -I use one email where all the leads come and I want them to enter the incoming leads in CRM and contact them but not to cheat and tell me they generated those leads.
    Then you need a better system.

    Originally Posted by winnerman View Post

    - How do I keep them motivated and maintain honesty in generating new leads and at the sametime maintain and followup with the inbound leads I get on emails?
    Honesty should be maintained by the system. If you have a CRM then you won't have replication of old customers.

    To keep them motivated you need to keep them earning money and show them the sky's the limit. Pay - per -performance.

    All the best,

    Sasha
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  • Profile picture of the author winnerman
    Thanks Sasha for the answers . Any other recommendations would be highly appreciated
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  • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
    Originally Posted by winnerman View Post

    I run a business selling products and for past two years we did not do any outbound sales most of theleads we get in through inbound leads via website. I realized I needed to scale things up so I need somebody full time to do outbounds sales. My problem is how do I structure remuneration.

    -I want to pay the sales team - basic salary + commision.
    -I want to pay commision to the sales team ONLY on the NEW leads.
    -I use one email where all the leads come and I want them to enter the incoming leads in CRM and contact them but not to cheat and tell me they generated those leads.
    - How do I keep them motivated and maintain honesty in generating new leads and at the sametime maintain and followup with the inbound leads I get on emails?

    Any practical tips from people managing sales teams would be highly appreciated
    You need a way of TAGGING the incoming leads.

    You need to enforce your people to USE THE SYSTEM and only the system--that commissions won't be paid on projects not run through the system since their inception. They can't do 99% of the work, make the sale, and then dump the info into the system.

    Remuneration structure and sales process design are not freebies you're going to get as a giveaway on a forum. This is a Barrel-of-Monkeys situation you've got here and it takes expertise to fix.

    That's why very few people have responded. I've been looking at this thread for days, and not engaging because I don't want to come off negative. But I finally saw a way I could share some value.

    And I caution you: every time you touch your sales compensation structure, you will get blow back. From my article on the topic:

    "I'm not saying "Never change your sales compensation plan." That would be silly. But I am saying, "Don't head into the process of changing your comp plan and believing nothing bad or unexpected is going to happen."

    The first thing you should know is that when you change the comp plan, whatever alterations you make, people are going to be mad at you.

    Here's the truth: no matter how good the change is for your salespeople, even if it truly is better for them, someone is probably going to quit.

    Irrational, I know. But this is what happens. "Who the heck do they think they are, coming in and messing with how I'm getting paid? Forget this." Be ready to lose your top performer. Maybe it won't happen to you. It can, though.

    If you look at the DISC profile, you'll see most people are Ss and Is. These people don't publicly complain very often, because they want to get along. But they may resent the change. And resentment causes a ton of problems: work slowdowns, your tasks being put to the bottom of the pile, low motivation...and more bad things.

    The second common issue with altering sales comp plans is the "Robin Hood Syndrome". Rob from the rich to pay the poor. The plan gets weighted to reward the top performers less and the low performers more. That way the low performers are incentivized to stick around. Again, sounds irrational, but business owners and sales managers do this.

    Comp plans need to reward your top performers so that it's perfectly plain that they're top performers. No one should be in any doubt.

    Many owners and managers come from 'on high' to make sweeping improvements to the business. Especially owners: after all, it's their business, isn't it? The problem is the friction this causes with employees who feel steamrolled by that process. They had no involvement. They're being dictated to. The Ds in the DISC profile may quit outright. The rest will resent the steamrolling. See the problem?

    So what you can do to make a huge difference in managing this change is get their involvement."
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    • Profile picture of the author winnerman
      Hi Jason,

      Thanks for your time in replying the thread, I really appreiciate it.
      As mentioned at the moment I do not have ANY outbound sales people making calls, I want to set up the SYSTEM first and then start hiring as I know making changes later can cause problems. That is the reason I asked in first place. At the moment most of the leads are generated through inbound.

      Any insight as to how to track and if possible any leaders who had already set this up I am ready to pay and have it set it up for me. The volume of calls would be less as the average order value is high and industry is medium size.
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    • Profile picture of the author tryinhere
      Originally Posted by Jason Kanigan View Post

      Remuneration structure and sales process design are not freebies you're going to get as a giveaway on a forum. This is a Barrel-of-Monkeys situation you've got here and it takes expertise to fix.
      Why not ? the forum is a supposed place to share ideas or information without asking for some sort of monitory reward. It would be nice to see more people offer help without spewing out their need for money or plugging their latest wso or book or whatever it is.

      There already has been some good advice from people, and following the advice on rewarding on pay per performance by Sasha is good, probably also look at paying a commission on all leads that a sales guy closes (without good sales guys / closers those existing leads will be just that leads or wasted opportunities), and it may be a bigger commission or a separate set compensation if the sales guy develops their own lead.

      By talking with a lot of comm sales guys and asking them what they like and don't like will help you in making up your structure, and there is nothing wrong with making a change if it needs to happen, for example if something is clear that it is not working then its only a stupid idea to keep it in place and not make the change.
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      • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
        Originally Posted by tryinhere View Post

        Why not ? the forum is a supposed place to share ideas or information without asking for some sort of monitory reward. It would be nice to see more people offer help without spewing out their need for money or plugging their latest wso or book or whatever it is.

        There already has been some good advice from people, and following the advice on rewarding on pay per performance by Sasha is good, probably also look at paying a commission on all leads that a sales guy closes (without good sales guys / closers those existing leads will be just that leads or wasted opportunities), and it may be a bigger commission or a separate set compensation if the sales guy develops their own lead.

        By talking with a lot of comm sales guys and asking them what they like and don't like will help you in making up your structure, and there is nothing wrong with making a change if it needs to happen, for example if something is clear that it is not working then its only a stupid idea to keep it in place and not make the change.
        This is exactly why I did not post before. You want to say I didn't provide value in my response? I didn't ask for a reward. I don't have to prove anything about my expertise. Keep stirring the pot, guy...

        The OP needs to pick a CRM, a way of tagging that the salespeople cannot touch (which is a simple field protected by permission levels), and a commission/payout structure that pays out noticeably more for self-generated leads than inbound ones.

        Estimate the inbound leads, divide by the # of salespeople, how many they can close individually, and there's your estimated commission each can earn from leads generated by your system. Keep this amount at below their comfort zone. If they're used to $3000 a month, set the estimate at $2000 or $2500 to keep them having to generate their own leads.

        Since the OP doesn't have any salespeople yet, this comfort zone needs to be figured out.

        Use a VA to enter the system-generated leads if you don't want to yourself.
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        • Profile picture of the author tryinhere
          Originally Posted by Jason Kanigan View Post

          This is exactly why I did not post before. You want to say I didn't provide value in my response? I didn't ask for a reward. I don't have to prove anything about my expertise. Keep stirring the pot, guy...
          WTF is that crap about ? the response, it was not even aimed at you, it was in general that people can help each other, no need to get touchy and no where did I make personal threats to you but you seem ready to hand out some spineless muscle, and I am sure this place has enough keyboard warriors without another one.
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  • Profile picture of the author Freebiequeen1999
    Why not put a system in place to "separate" the leads, pay an office worker to do that...and give the sales team the leads that will compensate them?

    If it is a numbers game, to expect them to deal with all leads and only get commission on some will be demoralizing. Not to mention some will have unlucky days, getting mostly "old" leads, which will cause conflicts.

    Most salespeople don't like doing "grunt" work and office work. As a woman, I have been in situations where I was expected to "fill in">>> receptionist didn't show up, can I sit there and answer phone?
    and so forth. Salespeople want to sell. I also see how some could and would game the system to get the better leads?

    I think you should figure out your system before they hit the phones )
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  • Profile picture of the author winnerman
    Thanks everybody for the reponses. HI Jason, is there any CRM other than Sales force you know which does the tagging right?
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