In order to attract high quality talent, your culture has to be uniquely positive. I decided to make having fun and celebrating success a high priority in my business. To this end, we began installing habits and traditions that would make having fun a routine part of life.
Here are some of the things that made it a hoot to be a part of our team:
Ringing the bell – When our sales reps completed their training and were ready to take their seat on the sales floor, they were each given a “hotel bell.” Every time they got a sale, they would hit their bell, and the entire sales room would erupt in thunderous applause, hoots and cheers. Eventually, our computer system was set up to allow each rep to have their own unique sound on the PA system that went off each time they entered a sale into the system. Even so, most of the veterans kept their bells and chose to celebrate “Old School.”
Testifying – Every morning during our 15 minute sales meeting, the reps had an opportunity to share a testimony about the methods and tools that were really working for them. Many routinely chose to give credit to one of their teammates for having given them the idea or freely sharing their best practices.
Contests, Contests, Contests – Smart, aggressive people get bored very quickly. To keep things lively on the sales floor, we always had at least a few contests going simultaneously. While many contests rewarded outstanding prospecting, new account creation, or high volume/high margin sales efforts; it was how we awarded the prizes that kept things exciting. Every prize was awarded in public with everyone present. Along with money, we gave away televisions, vacation cruises, preferred parking spaces, movie tickets, gift certificates, weekend getaways, etc. But by far, the contest guaranteed to create the most buzz, was always the “Win the chance to pie the Leaders” sweepstakes. This contest ran for a month and allowed 10 lucky winners to bombard me, Jane, and our senior management team with whipped cream pies, multiple times each. It was great fun for everyone (but kind of hard to get out of our nose and ears).
Playing together – Each year we would take a full day to celebrate our successes as a team. We would start the day with a company-wide overview of last years’ successes, complete with graphs showing our growth in each department. Next was our “academy awards”-like ceremony where 15-20% of our staff and management would be recognized with award trophies and monetary prizes for their outstanding contributions to Salon Support. Then, it was off to the race track, or bowling alley, or video arcade for several hours of hearty competition. These “organization fun days” bonded our people together in a very special way.