[LevelEleven is all about optimizing performance with motivation, competition, collaboration and recognition, which is partially why we’re really pumped up for football season! Today, enjoy the third of 3 football-related sales optimization articles.]
Challenger, Gray & Christmas’ study on the business cost of fantasy football has been getting a lot of press lately. It estimates that the cost of time lost, productivity lost and bandwidth consumed by workers participating in fantasy football will be $13.4B this year. That is a number that all companies will take very seriously.
Top businesses today are trying to find creative ways to leverage this reality, accept the inevitability that their most competitive employees will be engaged in fantasy football and turn a potential negative into a positive. Performance optimization software is one solution that can help them accomplish this.
Here’s what we know about top salespeople: They are competitive by nature. They are motivated primarily by recognition and competition. And fantasy football to them is like breathing. Large groups of friends get together and compete on something based on knowledge and ability, and yet, there are no inherent size or speed advantages like real sports. If a company has a sales team, it has employees playing fantasy football.
Performance optimization software is built around the concept of actualizing the peak output of employees through engaging them in competition and and rewarding them with recognition. It fits fantasy football like peanut butter fits jelly. When you can link the two concepts together — for example, by incorporating fantasy football themes into your sales contests — you can compel a sales team’s competitive urges to drive into even higher gear.
For example, think about the productivity that could be gained from the following sales contest ideas:
- Cold Calls and Yards – Each sales rep picks one quarterback, one running back and one wide receiver. During the week, every cold call completed earns 1 point. On Tuesday morning, points are added for last week’s leading rushers, passers and receivers. The reps then have until Friday to maintain their lead or make up for the poor performance of their fantasy teams.
- Defending Our Clients – Every customer relationship rep picks an NFL Defense. On Tuesday, they are awarded points for holding teams under 300 yards, turnovers and fewest points allowed. Then during the week, the teams are awarded points for every renewal and every client review.
- Closes and Touchdowns – Every sales rep picks a QB, RB and WR. On Tuesday, a point is awarded for every touchdown scored by each rep’s players. During the week, 2 points are awarded for every closed deal.
The variations of the themes are endless, but the execution is identical. And certain strategies can amplify your results. Adding publicly displayed sales leaderboards throughout the office and on mobile phones will show where everyone stands in the contests, so your team’s competitive fire grows even hotter. Boosting recognition based on what’s shown on those leaderboards will take motivation up another notch, too.
Imagine this: On Sunday, your company has employees plotting strategies to sustain their lead or knowing that they need to overcome the 4 touchdown, 200 yard performance of another sales rep’s running backs. This completely flips the script. Instead of losing time on Monday to fantasy football, you are gaining work time on Sunday, as top performing sales professionals adjust their selling strategy to work in concordance with the results of fantasy football. That is truly game changing!
Great idea to turn a productivity loss into a positive gain for sales force.