How to use challenges to motivate your team

9 Aug 2023 by Kitomba

Coming up with ways to keep your team motivated throughout the year can be hard. However, one great way to keep your team inspired and striving for success is through monthly challenges.

We spoke to Trish Ross, founder of First Class Services and owner of two successful salons in Hamilton, New Zealand, who runs regularly challenges in her salons to incentivise and motivate her team, and boost revenue!

Keep reading to learn how to successfully use challenges in your own business.

Why are incentives so important?

When running a business and motivating your team it’s important to not solely rely on granting pay rises to keep your team motivated, because you’re not always going to be in the position to grant pay rises.

This is why it’s essential to explore alternative methods to motivate your team, such as providing them with the necessary training to improve their skills and boost the revenue they’re bringing into your business.

What are the benefits of monthly challenges?

Implementing monthly challenges is a great incentive for a few reasons, including:

  • Challenges drive your team to perform better and be able to offer more to your clients.
  • Challenges encourage your staff to perform a consistent service to your clients.
  • Challenges provide a revenue boost to your business, and if you do them regularly, that boost becomes consistent.


How to run a successful challenge

There are a few things to consider when designing your monthly challenge to ensure it’s as successful as possible:

Tip 1. Keep it engaging by running it for a short time

If your challenge runs across the entire month, it can be hard to keep your staff engaged all month, as their goal can seem so far away. Trish recommends running challenges for 10 days as this is the perfect time period to make enough of an impact, while not being so short that your staff don’t have time to get into the challenge.

Tip 2. Practice makes perfect

It’s important before beginning any challenge to make sure your team has the necessary training and is comfortable with the requirements you have set. A great way to make sure your team can have conversations with your clients adequately is by physically role-playing customer interactions out with your team. That way your team can go out on the floor and feel empowered to talk to customers because they have practiced what they are going to say.

Trish Ross Quote

Tip 3. Allow your staff to track their own progress

To make sure your staff are motivated to reach the goal, it’s important to make it easy for them to see their progress.

Kitomba Targets allows you to set targets at a business level or personalised to each staff member within minutes, see your projection for reaching your targets and past comparisons, choose industry specific targets and more.

Tip 4. Let your team choose the reward

You want to make sure that the reward is something your team actually wants. Otherwise, they won’t be as motivated to reach the goal! You can decide on individual rewards that suit each staff member or a team reward such as a fun day out. Whatever you decide, make sure your team are involved in this process and like their reward.


Tip 5. Break down your goal into manageable chunks

It can seem scary for your team if you ask them to make an extra $2000 in only 10 days, which can unmotivate a team if they feel like it’s not achievable. Trish suggests breaking down your goal into days, and then per staff member.

For example, if we take the example above of $2000 in 10 days, if you have a team of five staff, they only need to take an extra $40 a day each. If you do this calculation in front of them, it gives them reassurance that the goal is achievable.

Tip 6. Opt for high margin products and services

To ensure the success of your salon incentives, consider choosing high-ticket margin items in your business that offer the best return. For hairdressing salons, products that complement the services provided, like take-home hair treatments, can significantly increase sales when offered at a discounted rate.

In beauty therapy clinics, introducing boosters to facial treatments, such as vitamin C shots or LED light therapy, can add value to existing services without extending the appointment time. Clients will appreciate the recommendations and feel cared for, while your team gains recognition as experts in the field.

Tip 7. Connect your challenge to a bonus scheme

To further elevate your team’s performance and maintain their engagement year-round, you can connect the monthly challenges to an end-of-year Christmas bonus scheme. This creates a sense of progression within the team, with junior, intermediate, and senior levels all having opportunities to earn varying bonus amounts based on their performance throughout the year.

For example, every challenge completed contributes to the year-end bonus, with higher targets for seniors compared to juniors. This structure not only incentivises team members to excel but also fosters loyalty and dedication to your salon.

salon team discussion

Ready to motivate your team with challenges?

By embracing monthly challenges, setting attainable goals, and connecting them to meaningful rewards, you can transform your salon’s culture and boost revenue significantly. Empower your team, and you’ll witness a more loyal clientele and the potential to make an extra two thousand dollars a week or more in sales.

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