Retaining Great Salespeople

Five Key Areas That Keep Your Sales Team Engaged & Committed To Your Organization

By Suzanne McIntosh President, McIntosh Human Capital Management | March 05, 2017

Great hotel salespeople are hard to find. Our Sales Leaders and Talent Recruiting Professionals commit time, money and energy recruiting for high performing, passionate and productive salespeople. Our best salespeople consistently drive revenue, inspire confidence and loyalty with our customers, generate new business, increase brand trust and contribute to the company culture. Conversely, turnover is expensive and negatively impacts our property’s performance. Successful leaders must cultivate engaging environments and maintain high business standards to retain their salespeople and to create successful teams.

We all strive to create an effective, cohesive sales team, led by an inspiring and motivating leader who consistently drives results. Your salespeople have done a great job of creating relationships and confidence in your service delivery and guest experience. Customers look at turnover of your sales organization as an indicator of “something wrong” with the hotel or company. When they leave, this confidence can be shaken and the client may follow your salesperson to your competition.

In this article, we will explore the five key ways sales leaders can retain their salespeople and what other contributing factors prevent sellers from leaving to join the competition:

  1. Provide a clear path of career development and advancement.
  2. Provide competitive compensation, meaningful incentive plans and extend sincere recognition
  3. Create a culture built on trust.
  4. Have solid brand integrity and consistent service delivery.
  5. Communicate clearly and openly about major organizational changes, mergers and integrations

Setting a Clear Path for Career Opportunities

Aggressive, highly motivated salespeople are always looking for ways to advance their career and increase their earning potential. While a certain amount of “comfort” in a role is important, a complacent Sales Manager will not be looking for the new business and expanding the markets you need to grow your business.

Hospitality salespeople look at their company and leadership to provide a clear path for their growth and career progression. If you give them a realistic and timely road map as to what to expect as their next career step, they are more likely to stick with you. If the company is not growing (or worse retracting), or long term leaders are not “going anywhere”, high performing salespeople will look elsewhere to progress their careers. Unfortunately, in the meantime, you have a potentially unmotivated and bored team member, that effects their performance and the entire sales team's morale.

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Coming up in March 2018...

Human Resources: Value Creation

Businesses must evolve to stay competitive and this is also true of employment positions within those organizations. In the hotel industry, for example, the role that HR professionals perform continues to broaden and expand. Today, they are generally responsible for five key areas - government compliance; payroll and benefits; employee acquisition and retention; training and development; and organizational structure and culture. In this enlarged capacity, HR professionals are no longer seen as part of an administrative cost center, but rather as a member of the leadership team that creates strategic value within their organization. HR professionals help to define company policies and plans; enact and enforce systems of accountability; and utilize definable metrics to measure and justify outcomes. Of course, there are always new issues for HR professionals to address. Though seemingly safe for the moment, will the Affordable Care Act ultimately be repealed and replaced and, if so, what will the ramifications be? There are issues pertaining to Millennials in the workforce and women in leadership roles, as well as determining the appropriate use of social media within the organization. There are new onboarding processes and e-learning training platforms to evaluate, in addition to keeping abreast of political issues like the minimum wage hike movement, or the re-evaluation of overtime rules. Finally, there are genuine immigration and deportation issues that affect HR professionals, especially if they are located in Dreamer Cities, or employ a workforce that could be adversely impacted by federal government policies. The March Hotel Business Review will take a look at some of the issues, strategies and techniques that HR professionals are employing to create and sustain value in their organization.