How to sell your comp plans to your sellers

In partnership with Pavilion, our panelists from QuotaPath and HubSpot shared key insights on best practices and actions for your team to consider.

The full recording includes both HubSpot’s and QuotaPath’s principle designs around compensation planning and how they roll out changes. And, for five quick takeaways on ensuring seller buy-in, read on. 

As a sales team leader, you know that a well-structured compensation plan is key to motivating and retaining top sellers.

But simply implementing a new plan isn’t enough; you also need to sell it to your sales team. 

Without buy-in and understanding from your sellers, even the best compensation plans can fall flat. 

That’s why it’s crucial to effectively communicate the benefits and structure of your new comp plan to your team in a way that inspires and motivates them to achieve their goals. 

In collaboration with Pavilion, QuotaPath and HubSpot recently hosted a webinar titled “How to Sell Your Comp Plans to Your Sellers.”

Our panelists included HubSpot‘s Chief of Staff Kelly Brooks and Sr. Manager of Compensation Kathryn Walenty, alongside QuotaPath Sr. Director of RevOps Ryan Milligan and host CEO and Co-Founder AJ Bruno

5. Make sure your sales leaders are sold on the plan first.

At QuotaPath, Ryan mentioned that it’s your sales leaders who will make or break your sales teams’ reaction to a new comp plan. That’s why it’s imperative to ensure that the team leader understands the changes behind it. This will help them frame it in the best way for their reps.

“If you’ve got a sales leader who comes in and says ‘Ops and Finance are requiring this part of the plan,’ you’re already creating a divide between Sales and Ops and Finance,” Ryan said.

To help, Ryan has the sales leaders walk the team through the new plan with Ryan in the room. They pull up the financial plan and explain why they’re doing it and why it’s the right fit. 

4. Combine sales enablement with comp plan changes.

“Help your reps see how they can achieve it,” said Kelly.

If your organization is focused on new logos and your comp plan rewards accelerators for outbound deals on new logos, pair it with the enablement strategy on how they can do it. 

“The more you can combine these, the more you’ll be able to ease concern,” Kelly said. 

3.  Have a communication framework that you stick to.

“Communication is incredibly important,” Kat said. “You have to have a solid communication plan.”

She added, if you think you have communicated it enough, you haven’t.

Start your compensation communication plan with leadership to create a trickle-down effect. This ensures that by the time these messages reach your team, your leaders communicate changes positively, confidently, and accurately. 

2. Involve rep feedback early on.

To encourage rep buy-in, invite reps to the conversation before the comp plan design process begins.

“I ask our reps ‘What do you like about our existing comp plan?’ ‘What would you like to see change?’ so that I can get a good idea of what they are incentivized by,” Ryan said. 

Then, when you introduce the new changes, point out the wins in the design that came from rep feedback. Lay it out. 

1. Contextualize the plans for reps. 

Be transparent about the state of the business. Show how much money they can make while doing good for the business.

“When we rolled out our comp plans this year we increased our quota to OTE ratio,” Ryan said. “Naturally, this wasn’t perceived as a win. But at the same time, we increased our accelerators and multipliers for over attainment — which is a win.” 

Provide the context by showing the cost of sales and the margin of the business. Highlight what you fit into the plan that they asked for.

Thanks to everyone for their thoughtful questions throughout the webinar and again to our panelists.

For additional resources on compensation planning, check out HubSpot’s The Ultimate Guide to Sales Compensation and QuotaPath’s Compensation Hub, a free library of 20 adjustable comp plan templates.

About QuotaPath 

QuotaPath automates commission tracking and sales compensation management for growing tech companies. Our customers who see the most value are teams between 20-250 employees, with a CRM already in place, such as HubSpot. To see it for yourself, start a free 30-day trial.


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