Competition is important to every business, but just as important as competition is collaboration. You can see this in the dramatic growth of social networking and cloud computing over the last decade. Facebook, Google, and Salesforce (especially with their Chatter feature) are designed expressly to encourage collaboration and teamwork in the office, and it’s in our nature to work best on a team.
Collaboration and competition don’t have to be in opposition, though. For instance, the absolute best thing we do for motivation at my own company is to celebrate every sale with a text message to every member of the team. Yeah, it’s old school, even if it’s a text message instead of a bell. We still get that instant notification for each sale as soon as the order comes in.
And that drives each member of our team to be the next one to make the office resonate with a hundred little dings! on all of our phones. We think this approach bonds us together as a team and encourages a friendly race to make the next sale.
It’s also just smart business. When we get that ding, we have our marketing team check and see if there’s an opportunity for a case study or to make the new client a reference customer. We have our support team offer assistance and confirm license management. And our account executives believe that it’s the best time to email or call the customer to say “thanks.”
At this point, it’s not a handy little trick. We view it as a best practice. It keeps our whole office plugged in to the heartbeat of the company. It’s a constant reminder to remain true to our culture—to remain, as Salesforce would say, a “customer company”. Ownership doesn’t just come with stock options—true ownership comes with feeling like you belong to something. That’s the reward that drives productivity.
The only downside? Good sales days make the building sound like an angry hive of doorbell-pressing bees—constant dings, constant vibration. Wait, did I say that’s a downside? Funny, somehow new sales alerts never get distracting or annoying.
Author: Brandon Bruce is the COO and Co-Founder of Cirruspath, Inc. Prior to building Cirrus Insight, Brandon served as the Director of Gifts and Grants at Maryville College, and the Operations Manager at Rangefire Integrated Networks. He has had several speaking engagements, including the World Telecommunication Development Conference in Malta, the Information Society and Development G7 Conference in South Africa, and the Junior Summit in Japan. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from the University of California, Santa Barbara; an MBA from the University of Phoenix; and JD from Concord Law School.
Published: June 19, 2014