A world without quotas


What motivates people to perform better?

Is it monetary value? Or is it a genuine desire for personal growth or education?

But sales reps are different, right? They need incentives, metric-centric goals, and quotas! But what if they weren’t? What if they didn’t? What if we don’t give them enough credit? What if instead of having quotas, you paid your reps a base salary of what they would normally make in OTE?

It’s an interesting idea. I can’t think of any companies who have tried it (granted, for good reason-possibly), but I genuinely wonder what would happen if a company had the guts to eliminate sales quotas. Without a quota, reps just might be motivated by other things like being more engaged with product managers. They might want to spend a few extra hours a week helping the new hiring class learn the ropes. They might stop padding their stats just to win a spiff and instead focus on driving value to clients and co-workers. Sales leadership could now focus on training and developing their talent rather than talking quotas (and rearranging comp plans) and attainment every so often. Reps might be given the freedom to experiment with new methods and systems. Can you imagine? Innovation coming from the sales team?

It’s just a thought. Maybe one day I’ll be in a position to try it out.