A few weeks ago we challenged our friends at RevGenius to a friendly wager: Who has the harder job? Account Executives or Sales Development Reps? The RevGenius community voted for SDRs in a landslide—and for good reason! SDRs are a company's first line of defense—err, offense rather—when it comes to prospecting new clients.
They are the ones calling, emailing, 'Vidyarding', LinkedIn’ing, nonstop, all day, every day. However, most of that overwhelming work is met with a resounding “no thanks” or no response at all.
It’s a job that requires a lot of grit but doesn’t get all the glory. Despite this, they are a vital part of building pipeline and a downright necessity to sales strategy. How are you, as a sales manager, keeping your SDR teams motivated? Lucky for you, we covered this question and much more in our latest webinar with RevGenius. Check it out below!
If you're too busy like an SDR, for example, here's the TL:DW(atch) version:
Clear Path to Success
In most cases, SDRs are an entry-level position with the goal of moving into an AE position. Providing your SDRs with clear next steps for their career growth and progression is key to preventing their burnout. It’s hard to stay motivated when you aren’t able to see the next step in front you. Checking in during weekly 1x1s to let your SDR know that they’re doing what needs to be done in order to move ahead and that you’re invested in their career growth goes a long way in maintaining loyalty and motivation.
Recognition can come in all shapes and sizes: in a 1:1, a team meeting, an email blast, or slack channel. Promoting your SDR's successes and hard work doesn’t just make them feel good, it gives them visibility in the company. It also lets other team members know who to watch out for and sets the example for others. An SDR is working overtime to fill the pipe? Call it out! They spent their entire day creating custom videos for prospects? Call it out! The key here is to recognize not just the big wins but the little wins, too.
Alright, this may be an obvious one but while running competitions, it’s important to remind yourself of a few things: How many competitions have you run recently? Too many competitions will burn people out, too few have them losing momentum. Make sure you’re consistent with your competitions but not overusing them. If that's the case, mix it up! Our favorite way to keep competitions fresh and less monotonous is to run a physical competition. One great example is to start up a Strava running group and log who worked out the most that week. Not only does this break up the monotony of an SDRs day but it encourages them to get up and move around. We all know that getting in a quick gym session or a walk outside does wonders for creativity, clarity, and overall happiness.
***Pro Tip: SalesScreen has a Strava integration that makes this type of competition a breeze!
Lastly, rewards. Winning a competition isn’t fun if the prize at the end isn’t something worth fighting for. Alleviate this issue by asking your teams what they want to obtain. Not only is this a great way to get to know your team but it also tells you what motivates them to work hard. Offer up a few suggestions to get started such as making someone on the team get the winner coffee or making someone do pushups during an all-hands. Our personal favorite though is winning a chance to sleep in on a Monday. Ensuring that your team is competing for something they actually want is important to keeping motivation high, but also can spur some middle performers into really going for it. You may find out you’ve got a few underdogs on the team!