Don’t Fight the Gamers, Embrace Them

Studies show that 71 percent of American workers are actively disengaged on the job. They are distracted, unfocused, spread too thin, and too few of their  efforts, good or bad, are reflected in their paycheck. There is a great opportunity for company leaders to remedy this issue, but it isn’t that easy. What can easily serve as a solution to this problem is an expertly written and executed sales incentive compensation plan that motivates reps, and drives desired behavior. However, when reps game a poorly written plan, the results can be a CFO’s nightmare. Keeping these things in mind, I decided that it was the perfect time to finally share what I’ve learned from decades in the industry. So why am I writing the book now? Watch the video below and find out:



In my new book, I’ll share how reps “gaming” a well written plan really is a good thing. However, you still need to be on the look out for rep behavior that can cost your company,  including:

The Price-Slashing Rep: This salesperson takes advantage of earning their commissions from top-line sales revenue. They’ll dip far below market price to close as much business as possible- padding their own pockets while the company loses money.

The Slacker Rep: A rep with a monthly goal and achievement bonus boosts her earnings by selling hard one month, and spending the next month shopping on Amazon. This rep maximizes her earnings doing half the work she’s capable of doing. Her lack of productivity causes the company to miss out on potential gains.

The Bargain Bin Rep: An employee with a unit based incentive plan that does not prioritize products spends the quarter focusing on easy-to-move discounted products. The salesperson walks away flush, while the company takes a hit.

All of the above scenarios are win-lose. The rep profits, but the company loses money. Let’s be real, getting played is no fun. However, as upsetting as it might be to admit- only plans that aren’t written well can be gamed this way. When companies focus on their fear of incentives, instead of the motivational power of their incentive compensation, they short-change themselves, and their employees.

My new book starts with a revolutionary, three-pronged approach to creating the right plan. The book will guide readers through several self-assessments to investigate and enhance their incentive strategy effectiveness. More than just a checklist, it delves deep into the science of motivation, and shares critical insights for unleashing big results, all based on several terabytes of proprietary information gleaned from industry leaders’ best practices.

Incentive compensation used to refer only to the financial bonuses paid to sales people. Today, it spans a wide variety of non-monetary incentives as well, and includes everyone from janitors to bank tellers, truck drivers, and CEOs.

Don’t fight the gamers; embrace them, and build your incentive plans knowing that they will utilize every possible means to earn their badges, bonuses, checks, extra PTO days, or whatever other bait you are dangling in front of them.

Want more tricks of the trade? Visit


Xactly CEO Christopher W. Cabrera Reveals Secrets to Increasing Revenues through the Power of Motivation in Game the Plan
Secrets to Gaming the Plan with Ronnie Lott