How to Use Sales Leaderboards to Influence Company Culture: Part 1

Why should you use leaderboards? Here are 4 compelling reasons.

Victoria

Marketing - October 22, 2018

“Being a great place to work is the difference between being a good company and a great company.” – Brian Kristofek, President and CEO, Upshot

Everyone is familiar with leaderboards. You seem them daily in sports, games, education, business and nearly every other competitive aspect of life. Why is that? It’s because they’re fun, easy to interpret information from and they inspire higher performance.

Have you ever entered a race, for example? Regardless of type or distance, chances are that there were leaderboards displaying finisher information and you were eager to see where you placed at the finish. Depending on where you placed, you probably either celebrated your hard work or promised yourself to give it extra effort next time around. This is because humans are competitive by nature and driven by the desire for constant improvement.

Among increasing employee engagement and improving performance, there are many benefits of using sales leaderboards in the office. Here are 4 of the most compelling.

Boost motivation

According to a Gallup study, 87% of employees lack motivation and are generally unhappy in their jobs. While this may sound like a harsh statistic, it doesn’t have to be. The truth is that boosting employee motivation and performance is pretty easy once you set a firm commitment to it. If you show employees that you are making the effort, they will follow suit.

Leaderboards are a great way to combat a lack of motivation and enthusiasm in the office. They provide tangible goals to work towards–in a visually stimulating manner that is easy to understand. They also instill a sense of urgency and healthy competition that your staff will likely respond well to.

Improve transparency

According to an employee engagement survey by the Harvard Business Review, 70% of people said they are most engaged when senior leadership frequently updates and communicates company strategy.

Leaderboards are also a highly effective tool to increase the amount of transparency–both among employees and management. By displaying data and targets throughout the office(s), everyone is constantly updated and on the same page. As a result, there is an increase in performance and collaboration on clearly defined goals.

Additionally, studies show that employees are more engaged and thus more productive when management is transparent and openly communicates company updates, strategies and goals. People want to know what goals/purpose they are working towards, and they want to know their role in achieving those goals. By empowering your employees with knowledge and openness, you are creating a more positive and meaningful work atmosphere where they will want to work harder.

Furthermore, being open and honest will lead to better and faster problem-solving–if employees know the reality of what is going on at the company, they can contribute valuable ideas and solutions to executives.

Increase employee engagement

Similar to motivation, leaderboards have been proven to increase employee engagement by providing a fun and meaningful way to complete tasks. Engagement is significant in the workplace because it ultimately affects the company bottom line. Research shows that companies with a high level of employee engagement have experienced a 19% increase in operating income–as well as a 28% increase in earnings growth.

So, if you’re looking for a way to drive focused activity on a specific goal in a way that’s fun, engaging and intuitive, leaderboards are a great answer.

Keep track of metrics

Leaderboards make it easy to track key performance indicators. For those companies who are already effectively tracking key data and metrics, leaderboards make it better and easier because you can display real-time data in a visual and intuitive way.

You can also choose which KPIs are most important and base competitions on the specific behaviors you want to encourage from employees. For instance, if you want employees to make more cold calls, set up a competition where the person with the highest number of cold calls in a given week receives a prize.

Example: If John is a sales director in an outbound call center that focuses on insurance sales and John knows that his sales teams close deals on 1 in 7 calls, then he immediately knows that by increasing call volume (without diminishing quality), he will increase deals closed and revenue generated. So, John sets up a leaderboard to show the top 20 agents who are making the most calls and another that shows the top 10 agents closing the most deals (by quantity, value, or margin). As a result, his teams are more aware of their daily numbers and of their impact on bottom-line growth.

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