Delineating and Segmenting Sales Teams

In a small, fast-growing market, one of the best and easiest things to do with an inside sales team is to make it a free-for-all such that the sales reps can aggressively go after any business they want that isn’t already being called on by a co-worker. The idea is that there’s huge potential and the reps should have the autonomy to figure out what works best for them, especially in a situation with no cap on commission.

As the market and the team grows, many times it becomes necessary to delineate the sales team based on one or more factors. Here are some of the more common examples to segment sales reps:

  • Geographic territories (e.g. regions, state, cities, zip codes, etc)
  • Industries (e.g. technology, healthcare, government, etc)
  • Company size (e.g. companies at or below 250 employees and companies above 250 employees)
  • Deal size (e.g. deals at or below $10,000 and deals above $10,000)

One of the worst things a sales rep can hear is that their comp plan is changing and their territory is shrinking (often happens when a startup is growing fast and adding more reps). My recommendation is to keep things simple as long as possible and introduce more complexity and specialization as feedback and data make it painfully obvious that there’s a better way.

What else? What are some more ways to delineate and segment sales teams?

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