Working as a Sales Development Representative (SDR) isn’t always easy. At many companies you spend your days making countless cold calls or conducting cold email outreach, facing rejection after rejection. The job can become a slog, so it’s no wonder that a lot of places face a high turnover rate (on average about 14 months) within their sales development departments.
If you’re a business that is using SDRs, it’s essential you work to keep them happy. Not only do happy SDRs produce better results, but they stick around longer. This means you won’t have to spend as much time finding and training new SDRs, and you’ll have experienced people working on your team. To keep your SDRs happy, and have them stick around longer, here are 4 strategies you can use.
Introduce New Tools and Training
The first strategy we recommend is consistently introducing new tools and training to keep things fresh. For instance, you could introduce new techniques to help generate leads, a team productivity tool, or even some new software for scheduling appointments. Working as an SDR can wear a person down over time, especially if the job is essentially the same day in and day out. By teaching your SDRs new things, or by having them learn different tools, you keep their minds fresh and active.
On top of this, your SDRs will appreciate being able to learn new things while they work. Chances are they don’t want to work as an SDR for the rest of their life, and by giving them the opportunity to learn new things, you’re giving them skills they can use to further their career. Most people want to feel that they are making progress within their careers, so if your SDRs are doing the same thing every day and learning nothing new, they’ll likely grow discontent and look for other employment opportunities.
To get started, there are great online courses you can enroll your SDRs in:
- The CSDR Accreditation from the AA-ISP
- Webinars and Online Classes from Sales Hacker
- Business Development Courses from Udemy
A Fun Work Atmosphere
The next strategy you should try is creating a fun work environment. No matter your job, work becomes a little easier if you’re having a good time while you do it. Working as an SDR isn’t the most glamorous or exciting of jobs, which means you need to find other ways to make work more enjoyable.
A great way to do this is by hosting contests. For example, you could give out a prize to whoever schedules the most meetings for your sales team in a week or month. This will introduce friendly competition amongst your SDRs and keep things a little more exciting. You could also throw surprise contests, for example giving the next person to qualify 50 leads a prize. This breaks up the monotony of the day while simultaneously increasing productivity. Just be sure whatever contest you hold doesn’t impact the quality of the work.
Another great thing you can do is host team-building exercises. The work day is a lot easier to get through if you enjoy the people you’re working with. By hosting regular team-building exercises, especially after you bring in new people, you can help to bring your SDR team closer together. There are plenty of team-building activities available, from things you can do in the office to sending the team out to complete an “Escape the Room” challenge. It doesn’t matter what it is, as long as it’s fun, gets people to work together, and gets your SDRs away from their phones or computer screens for a few hours.
As we said earlier, working as an SDR isn’t a very glamorous position. When you do good work, it’s often the Account Executives who get all the credit for closing the sale. If you want to keep your SDRs happy, and recognize their hard work, preferably in public. If someone has an exceptionally good month of generating leads, let the enter office know. When someone closes a sale, let the SDR who set up the meeting get credit as well.
Everyone wants to know that their work is valued and appreciated. Provide your SDRs with some recognition of their efforts, whether it be a bonus at the end of the year, a public acknowledgement, or some other form. Doing so will go a long way towards keeping them around.
Give Out Mini Promotions
Finally, combining two of the strategies above, you can give out mini promotions to your SDRs. Giving out a mini promotion not only helps your SDRs feel like they are furthering their career, but it’s a public acknowledgement of their hard work. Many SDRs may want to move up to be an Account Executive, but your company can only handle so many people at this position. Plus, you don’t want to lose your best SDRs, because then you’ll need to keep training new ones.
With mini promotions you are giving your SDRs more responsibility while keeping them at the same position. For instance, you could ask one of your SDRs to take over training any new SDRs that come in. Or you could put one in charge of researching better sales development practices. These aren’t full-fledged promotions to other positions, but they are assigning more responsibility. This extra responsibility will help your SDRs to grow their careers while also ensuring that their day-to-day operations remain fresh.
Don’t Let Your SDRs Get Away
After spending so much time finding the right people to join your team, and training them on your processes and techniques, you don’t want this person to leave the job a few months later. Then you need to repeat that long and costly hiring process again, limiting your business’s efficiency.
Instead, focus on keeping your SDRs around for as long as you can. Luckily, this isn’t too hard to do. You need to keep things fresh, make sure your SDRs know that you value them and that you want to help them further their careers. The above strategies will hopefully help you to keep your SDRs around longer, and as a result you’ll find that your entire business becomes more efficient.