4 Tips to Retain Top Sales People and Reduce Costly Turnover

February 17, 2016 / Reading: 3 minutes

Unless you’re a multi-million dollar corporation, retaining your sales associates should be your top priority, right next to the actual sales growth. Even then, big companies know the value of having a talented sales team over underpaid disposable help. Whether financial strain or lack of team chemistry is making you reconsider your staff choices.

1. Building Together

If you notice that your sales are lopsided and that only a few employees are reaching the level of productivity that you are happy with, you should reflect on ways to bring the whole team together and avoid future turnover issues. Include everyone in conversations, not just 1-on-1’s with the underperformers. The more comfortable your sales team is with communicating with each other, the better they do and the easier it is to retain your best workers.

2. Be Positive, but Stern

Being the cheerleader for your sales team can get old fast, it can rub off as condescending, so you have to keep a balance of positive reinforcement and strong critique to give direction. Retaining your strongest sales people is a matter of demonstrating that you’re building a winning team and that your leadership goes beyond tracking spreadsheets. You value their commitment and so should they for yours, by expressing clear goals and the directions to reach them.

3. Grow your Team

Employees can feel claustrophobic if they feel as if they are stuck in their position, especially for top performing sales people. Absence of room for growth and progression are qualifiers that sales representatives list much of the time for leaving past positions, which is as it should be. Sales people have a tendency to be future-focused and will do whatever it takes, including taking their talents elsewhere, to reach their goals of success.

Related: 5 Ways To Motivate Your Employees and Make Them Stick Around

So, in the event that you need to keep that from happening, your goal ought to be concentrating on meeting their needs. Ask every salesman in your group what he or she might want to see improvement in. This will offer you some assistance with determining the way to deal with constructive criticism and assistance with developing open doors for eliminating that glass ceiling that all top sales people struggle with at some point.

4. Think Long-term Gains

Don’t set your company up for disappointment in the future by hiring only situationally-driven employees. What that means is: hire employees who come from a background in sales and personally want to succeed in sales, rather than those who are forced to work in sales by default. There’s nothing wrong with employees who want the job because they need a job, however, if you’re trying to retain salesmen that are consistently reliable workers, you have to start with how you approach the hiring process.

High turnover can be hard to figure out at your desk, sometimes you need a little objective criticism and advice from an outside source to help you out. Don’t be afraid to ask for assistance from a sales recruiter or business consultant. Anyone with a strong background in sales should be able to give some advice on your situation, though, just be open-minded.