Using Incentive Compensation To Drive High-Performance Sales Culture

Sales Culture is a fundamental component of any sales company that has the ability to tip the scale between being weak and being high performing. Building the right sales culture for your organization helps you succeed in the long term. When there is no sales culture in your company, it’s likely you’ll have a sluggish workforce which can be severely dangerous to your business.

Sales executives are always looking for innovative ways to motivate their sales teams. They hold grand meetings to announce brand new bonus programs for sales teams and promise exotic trips and perks to rainmakers. When business is not getting good sales, they hold regular sales contests, motivating salespersons to compete with each other in bringing more sales to the company.

At Performio’s annual customer event in Sydney, David Marshall (Performio CEO & Co-Founder) discussed how companies can leverage incentive compensation to drive a high-performance sales culture. This article discusses high-performance sales culture in organizations today, the key drivers of sales teams and how Performio supports sales teams to drive high performance in their sales company.

What is a High-Performance Sales Team?

A high-performance sales team tends to have well-trained sales representatives, a collaborative office environment, accomplished sales leaders, defined career growth paths, actionable key performance indicators and a comprehensive sales software. Once all these six elements are in place, your sales reps can engage in activities that bring in more revenue. The modern sales team today cannot survive without the tools and technology companies use to drive new business, and generate more sales and revenue, such as a CRM system like Salesforce, sales acceleration tools, incentive compensation tools and more. A sales executive’s responsibility is to focus on effectively managing his / her team and support them at all times.

high-performance sales teams use sales performance management software

What are the Key Drivers for Sales Teams?

We took a look at some leading academic and sales organizations and we found out that there were 6 key areas that the same teams valued most:


  • Proven Across The Team
  • Tools & Templates
  • Agile & Evolving
  • Quality Conversations


  • Open & Regular Feedback
  • Constant Improvement
  • Recruitment For Culture Fit


  • Decisions Based On Data
  • Less Is More


  • Comparison Metrics
  • Contests & Club
  • Co-operative


  • Accountability
  • Role Definition
  • Quick To Fire


  • Have Everyone On The Same Page
  • In Line With Organizational Goals
  • A clear set of Goals & KPIs

The Role of Sales Compensation

Sales compensation keeps top performers working at your company, and motivates other sales reps to improve their performance on a daily basis. Most companies today invest resources into ensuring that their sales reps are at the top of their game and that their sales compensation plan greatly rewards favorable performances put forward by the sales team. Better incentive plans are awarded to reps for hitting exceptional numbers.

incentive compensation management software plays a vital role in sales compensation

How Performio Supports High-Performance Sales Team

During our research, we found only one paper that cited Sales Compensation as a driver of high-performance sales teams and sales culture. Was it a little disappointing to see Performio as an incentive compensation management software company? Absolutely not.

At Performio we have always seen incentive compensation as the lubricant that helps drive the sales machine. Sales compensation is almost a hygiene factor, meaning if you don’t get it right it will have a negative impact on performance. Praising your sales representative for their performance is a smart way to enhance individual happiness, improve performance and increase job satisfaction. Having a good incentive compensation plan will reward your sales team for its high performance and decrease the likelihood that they will in the future seek out employment from competitors.

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