How to Do Sales Motivation on Your Team

Think back to when you were young. Did you ever play a sport in the middle, high school or college? If you did, you know that you always performed better with a coach, friend or family member cheering you on from the sidelines.

What about when you were in school in general? Did you ever come home with a straight-A report card? It always pushed you to succeed over and over again if you had someone who said they were proud of you.

In all areas of your life, you thrive when you have some sort of motivation.

If you are in sales, you know how much this is true. If you are a business owner, it’s time you knew how much sales motivation will boost internal morale and drive revenue.

What is a Sales Motivation?

A sales motivation is exactly what it sounds like. It is something that:

  • Gets your salesperson excited about your sales goal
  • Encourages them to work towards your sales goal
  • Allows them to exceed expectations so they can surpass your sales goal

But it goes beyond motivating them to reach and transcend sales goals. The right sales motivation inspires them to perform well overall and in the long run.

Everyone learns differently. If you run a business heavily in sales, you have a large sales team. You have to consider all of those moving parts that make up your sales department.

Just like they learn differently, you have to motivate each sales rep differently, too.

By the same token, each salesperson has one sales motivation that primarily compels them to succeed.

How Do You Motivate Salespeople?

That all sounds great. You just need sales motivation and your team will start to achieve and surpass sales goals?

“Count me in!”

But how do you motivate them? That’s the key.

First of all, you have to identify what drives your sales team to success as a whole, then on an individual level. Naturally, there are obstacles that may stand in both your and your team’s way. You have to hurdle over those before you can influence your team members to flourish.

Also, take into consideration that one sales motivation might change from day to day.

There are many different types of intrinsic motivation for your team. But as a sales leader, you need to pinpoint the predominant motivations. Also, understand the signs that one is working or failing.

Keep reading to understand the top six driving forces behind sales motivation.

What Motivates Salespeople the Most?

Like we said above, there are various important things that motivate salespeople. They do change often in essence and in energy.

Your team members might have an off day or these motivations might vary based on external factors. You also have a lot of sales goals to manage. Maybe you want to boost one rep’s motivation levels by 15 percent. You could want to bolster sales by 30 percent next quarter.

Regardless of your specific goals, you want to at least meet them, if not exceed them. 

Keep those stipulations in mind. Your strategy to achieve each sales motivation might differ in light of your unique business needs. However, we do have a list of the top factors that motivate every salesperson in general.

Now, let’s get into those six factors so that you can get on the path to achievement right away.

Six Factors That Motivate Salespeople


Money is the first sales motivation in the easy-to-remember acronym MOTIVE. This will not come as a shock to you or anyone within your sales department.

People want money. They stress about money. And if you are in sales, money is what motivates your daily work life.

Let’s look at some numbers in the U.S.

A 2020 survey by Capital One showed us that cut-and-dry reality.

  • 77 percent of people feel anxiety about their personal finances.
  • 58 percent feel a lack of control about their finances; they believe their finances control their life instead.
  • 52 percent do not think they can get a grip on their financial worries.

That’s a lot of people altogether. And a lot of them are probably in a workplace role where sales drive their business.

Money as a whole motivates salespeople, but whatever money buys is also a sales motivator.

Here are some specific ways to prioritize money as a motivator:

  • Talk about personal financial goals and reinforce them down the line. 
  • Explain organizational money goals and review them later.
  • Associate sales results with money.
  • Establish sales incentives if a rep performs well during a certain time period.

Of course, money alone is not everyone’s top motivator. Some may have a mixture of money and another factor as their sales motivation. Others yet could prefer something else altogether.


Another top contender for the number-one sales motivator is opportunity.

According to Oxford Languages, an opportunity has two main definitions. One is “a set of circumstances that makes it possible to do something.” The other is “a chance for employment or promotion.”

We know that both definitions are overwhelmingly positive sentiments. And your salespeople feel the same way.

Though there are two basic meanings to the word, an opportunity can change for every person.

In the scope of sales motivation, however, opportunities are often synonymous with challenges. They are also similar to how your team members can better their workplace environment.

Are several employees on your sales team motivated by opportunity? If that is the case, cultivate an environment rife with them.

Here’s how:

  • Share success stories (maybe from past or current employees or well-known and respected industry leaders) that bring about career growth.
  • Offer career pathing wherever you can.
  • Delegate, delegate, delegate. Share responsibilities so that you prepare your salespeople for potential internal promotions.



A lot of the time when you hear people talk about sales, you hear some choice language. Have you ever heard people say words like “cutthroat” or “sharks” or “lone wolf” when they talk about sales professionals? We have, too.

But the bottom line is that these words do not account for everyone in sales. Not everyone likes to work alone and push themselves to take on a massive workload for all the glory.

Like we mentioned earlier, everyone is different. It is not realistic to assume that everyone in your department is the same.

A lot of people prefer teamwork to solo work.

This could be for a multitude of reasons. Some people like to socialize; they like to be a part of something big. It makes them feel good that they add to company-wide success.

Some others produce their best work when they problem-solve with a group. It demonstrates their leadership ability so that they can shine. Or they feel great when they help another coworker achieve their individual goals.

Here’s how you can motivate your staff with teamwork:

  • Hold collaborative sales meetings.
  • Host office parties or events often.
  • Invite sales reps to help with internal projects.
  • Share sales quotes or sales inspiration quotes.
  • Have team-building exercises.
  • Give speeches that focus on teamwork.


Let’s go back to that idea of the “lone wolves.” In a professional setting, the phrase often has a negative connotation. But it doesn’t have to. It’s just how some people motivate themselves.

Independence has several facets. Independence can motivate a lot of people through feelings of:

  • Empowerment
  • Control
  • Power
  • Freedom

And the fact of the matter is simple. Those who value independence as a sales motivation factor can work well by themselves and as a team. You just have to know how to draw on their strengths.

You can do that by:

  • Delegating again. Assign these workers to various projects and then leave them alone; trust them to take care of it.
  • Stacking on more responsibility as they earn their dues.
  • Letting them take the lead on meetings every once in a while.


We all want those around us to see and hear us. That’s true across the board; it’s just a fact of humanity.

This goes for salespeople, too. They want you to recognize them and approve of them and their actions. Sometimes, they need you to see them as someone who stands out from the rest.

If you have a few salespeople who express that visibility is their top sales motivator, you should:

  • Offer public approval and recognition no matter how big or small the task at hand.
  • Shout them out with a personalized email.
  • Publish that email to higher-ups in your company.
  • Above all, make sure that you recognize their achievements and that they know it.


A lot of the time in sales, your reps don’t excel at everything all the time. But they want to anyway.

This one might sound similar to opportunity. But opportunists look for more ways to challenge themselves. Those who prefer excellence as a motivator want to succeed where they are now. They set goals for themselves and align them with business goals.

Ensure that you are aware of these actions when you communicate with them:

  • Body language
  • Physical or verbal actions
  • Your tone of voice

Also, foster an open relationship with your team. This way, they come to you if they feel like you are not meeting these needs.

This is how you can encourage excellence as a sales motivator:

  • Set goals together to boost their confidence. Make sure they are actionable goals.
  • Enhance their strengths so they can minimize their weaknesses.
  • Don’t give credence to the tiny errors.
  • Acknowledge progress.


You have a lot of personalities to take into account when you figure out what sales motivation works best. And you have a lot of other big-ticket items on your plate.

It’s time you let us take some of that stress away.

Here at Selling Revolution, we have top-tier professionals who know how to push you to the top of your industry. You need sales training that improves closing techniques and boosts morale.

But you’re tired of the one-size-fits-all approach. We get it. We’re tired of it too. That’s why we offer unique solutions for your small business needs, which you’ll see on our featured media page.

So don’t be tired anymore. Book a call with us today and let us take you to the top.