Incentive: noun 1. something that incites or tends to incite to action or greater effort, as a reward offered for increased productivity.


2. inciting, as to action; stimulating; provocative.
The whole concept of incentives in the direct sales world is a powerful motivator for many, I know I LOVE receiving free goodies from my company for achieving a goal, incentive or promotion. Incentives are meant to motivate and reward achievements. As a Team Manager I am always working to find that balance of incentives for my team, something that will motivate them but not break my bank. Frequently incentives are viewed as monetary or product orientated but money is not necessarily the best motivator.
It comes as no surprise that people are individuals and motivated by different things, sure some may be driven by money but there are other real motivators that don’t cost you a thing. Each month I try to put forward each of these types of incentives to my team.
Recognition is a HUGE motivator for me, and for many others as well, and this can be public or one on one. I regularly do posts on my team page recognizing accomplishments, sales, recruiting, being a positive influence etc. I also send HANDWRITTEN cards for promotions, or to welcome new team members, or will pop of a quick email or facebook message.
Friendly competition is another motivator for those competition driven individuals so running a contest or event on my team page solely based on the props they receive is fun for everyone, and reaches those driven by competition.
Peer motivation is another motivator. I find creating a team culture and camaraderie leads to greater success and motivation for team members. This culture leads to a team where they comment and post to praise, encourage and lift each other up. They begin to realize they are a part of something bigger than themselves and that each persons success are celebrated, and help bring the team to greater success. For many this brings an intense desire to do a good job.
Another motivator is impact…I mean truly having an impact on their lives and those around them. Growing professionally and personally brings a great sense of achievement and motivation, there is nothing like seeing people gain confidence in themselves and learn new skills. The impact they have positively on their team members and customers, whether it be making them feel beautiful, donations through a fundraiser, or just bringing people together feels good.
I do also do incentives that involve free product, gift cards etc, but in the long run most direct sales companies already run contests and incentives for consultants so why not let them spend the money. Your time is often better spent promoting those head office contests.
I am always trying to keep things fresh and through trial and error find the “incentives” that are most successful and motivating for my team. What motivates you? How do you give incentive to your teams?