Press "Enter" to skip to content

A look at sentiment on compensation for sales people

It seems salespeople at Cisco are pretty upset.     Per reporting in Insider, a revamp of sales goals has pushed teams to meet higher quotas even as revenue growth has slowed.     This is causing departures in the sales team, with at least 12 in enterprise sales having left in the past year, per employee’s LinkedIn pages.    In a statement to Insider, a Cisco spokesperson said the company had consistently updated its compensation structure “in alignment with industry best practices” to stay competitive.

VCs, too, seem to be having problems with compensation.   Again from Insider, while compensation is at record levels within the space – 20% higher bonuses in 2021 than 2020 – most junior members have to wait to see their cut.     This is due to the payout structure, which happens later – typically for as long as eight years before their shares vest.  

Why do we care?

In the context of the more significant problem of retaining and acquiring employees, looking at compensation as a piece of the overall picture is timely.    As observed on other episodes, the data points to compensation as not necessarily the number one reason for retaining employees… but it is up there. 

Salespeople, in particular, are pretty sensitive to pay related to their overall compensation.  Be very aware.