How to Properly Incentivize Field Teams for Improved Retail Execution
Consumer goods companies rely on field teams to collect key retail data to enable proper retail execution. If morale is low, motivation wanes, or if field representatives aren’t operating at peak performance, business will suffer. Here are the best ways to incentivize your field teams for optimal performance and ensure field team management is a top priority within your organization.
- Emphasize growth. Invest in employee development. Offer training sessions, opportunities for increased responsibility, and provide positive reinforcement and extra attention when appropriate.
- Communicate. Offer rewards and incentives that reflect your field team’s needs. Listen to your field representatives’ suggestions and comments. Welcome feedback, criticism, and advice—This channel should be a two-way street. Field teams need to be able to provide upper management with insight into the marketplace in the same way that managers and decision makers want a clear picture of what’s happening in the field.
- Clarify and simplify. As your to-do list grows and demands on your field team increase, take the time to organize and present material in an easily digestible manner that minimizes stress and motivates representatives to succeed. Employees will thank you for it, and they’ll be more engaged. And engaged employees perform at peak levels. According to Gallup’s State of the Global Workplace report, a scant 13% of employees worldwide feel engaged. Field team members who understand their key role in your business will operate with passion and creativity, ultimately propelling your business to the next level.
- Embody the spirit and values you want to see in your field team. Lead by example. If you want your field team to operate with integrity, passion, generosity, determination and transparency, then live by those virtues as well!
- Provide the right tools. It’s imperative that you help your field team operate at peak performance by providing the tools that will make their jobs easier and more enjoyable. These tools cover a wide spectrum—from proper software technology that enables real-time mobile data collection all the way down to an insulated rain jacket to offer protection from inclement weather.
In the end, a motivated field team is one that is supported by leaders who provide healthy attainable goals, a culture of two-way accountability, meaningful incentives and the tools required to optimize performance.