Invest in your people if you want to grow

Written by: James White

Vistage, the leading network for CEOs, recently shared a report from a major survey they conducted with over 4000 CEO’s worldwide. Whilst CEO’s everywhere are looking at making decisions across a range of areas of business, the 2 top areas when it comes to making both decisions and investments in 2023 are related to the hiring, recruiting and sourcing of people.

The summary of the report said:

CEOs are looking for aggressive tactics for hiring new staff and to retain those employees they have. The appetite for growth remains strong among small and midsize businesses, making recruitment and retention a top priority. To compete in the talent wars, 84% of CEOs are paying higher wages, 52% are offering expanded benefits and 44% are providing hiring and retention bonuses.

If we are to believe the results of this survey (and there is no reason why we shouldn’t – Vistage are a well-known and respected organisation) then it presents both problems and opportunities for sales leaders.

The problems are (and I can testify to this with some of the recent recruitment I have helped customers with) that finding the best sales talent is a real challenge. Candidates have far more choice of where they work and the salary and benefits packages they are now being offered are some 15 to 20% higher than what I was seeing previously for some basic business development roles.

Candidates are also not just looking at what they get paid either. They are interested in understanding what benefits and training come with the role, and how it can progress their overall career.

Organisations which are glib and carefree about the way in which they look after their teams could see some significant challenges in the coming months. This is one of the key reasons why companies are asking us to support them with their sales team retention.

Whilst it may seem like an extra investment to make, spending time understanding how your top sales performers currently feel about your organisation and their commitment to you as a company is critical.

  • What is frustrating them and stopping them from making progress and commission?
  • What help do they need to break through the sales challenges that they face?
  • How are other areas of the organisation supporting them to achieve their goals or how are other teams getting in the way?
  • How is the company supporting them in their personal life and development plans?


It’s all too easy to ignore that 121 meeting with one of your team and cancel the customer visit that you were going to attend with them. Other priorities get in the way and there is always something more important to do.

But the cost of seeing one of your top sales performers leave will bring not only short-term headaches but longer-term migraines as well.

Explaining the departure of someone important to the business is a challenge let alone replacing the income and business they generated. Add to this the hassle of having to then put time aside into recruiting someone new and spending time training them up and you have a whole host of grief that you as a CEO or Sales Leader don’t want!

So, with a competitive marketplace and studies showing that others want your top talent, make time to look after the people you have right now. Get under the skin of how they are REALLY FEELING and where challenges and issues exist, and solve them.

Where they need help, put the investment in place to support them.

The basis for you and your company’s growth is to build on the already solid foundations you have now. You can’t progress and grow if your foundations start collapsing around you!

If you choose not to take this path and carry on as you are, then good luck. The strategy may work but with thousands of CEOs looking to take your top team away, you may need more than luck!

My team and I are working with a range of ambitious businesses to help ensure they build great teams for sales growth. If this blog resonates with you and you want to know more about how we could help you mitigate this risk then drop me an email on We would be pleased to get on the phone and discuss some ideas with you.