10 Tips for A Powerful Sales Kickoff Meeting

A great sales kickoff (SKO) creates energy, focus and motivation to ensure your next year or quarter is a successful one and you can achieve company goals and hit sales targets.

What’s the key to running a great SKO? Turns out there are a bunch of important things to do and consider.

  1. THEME: Choose an engaging sales kickoff theme. Clearly define what a successful sales kickoff looks like and work that into a theme. Decide whether you’re celebrating, motivating, provoking or informing. You can do all of that, but which one is your focus? Decide what behavior you want to change with your SKO.
  2. SURVEY: Survey attendee salespeople ahead of time with SurveyMonkey to see what people need and want.
  3. AGENDA: Create a sales kickoff agenda. Align the content with both company goals and salespeople needs.
  4. VARIETY: Integrate presentations, trainings, and team-building. Include breakout sessions and team exercises.
  5. INFORM: Educate salespeople on all your products. Align the time you spend on products or services with your corporate and kickoff meeting goals.
  6. SUCCESS STORIES: Have top producers spend 5-10 minutes presenting a success story; you can put 7 of these into a panel, or 5 people who present, then discuss or answer questions.
  7. ENGAGE: Engage salespeople with workshops to get their ideas, surface obstacles and get bigger team buy-in. Gamify it by showing leaderboards for who has contributed the most in the meetings, which also holds accountable the people who are too quiet.
  8. ENERGY: Motivate and energize salespeople with music, enthusiasm and a great sales motivation keynote speaker.
  9. INTERACT: Facilitate team interaction. Include an informal mixer everyday, and if necessary, use icebreaker games to get the mixers hopping. Don’t make people sit for more than 2 hours at a time without a coffee or meal break.
  10. SPEAKER: For keynote speakers, hire speakers with actual sales experience- ideally with the kind of sales your company does. Super-ideally with a speaker who has done your kind of sales in your industry. But don’t get so specific about that that you can’t find talented, experience speakers with great videos.
  11. REFRESH: Take lots of notes or get video of the event so that you can share an executive summary “refresher” on what happened with them later. Otherwise, they may not recall a lot of good stuff!
  12. FEEDBACK: Get feedback from attendees on each session, ideally with forms at their tables they fill out at lunch and the day’s end.

Yes, that’s all. Go for it- you have your work cut out for you!