"Overall, working with Innecto has been a brilliant journey…They understand our business objectives straight away and came up with a focussed solution in a very short space of time. I would like them to stay on board with us to help us maintain the momentum and review the scheme as we go forward."
Amir Qureshi, Group Director
IT and Communications
No. of Employees
With more than three million customers acquired in ten short years, Lebara has become a major player in the mobile connections market. It has a reputation for providing the highest quality for both its customers and employees, and also funds the Lebara Foundation which helps displaced communities around the world.
The company has 1400 employees with operations in eight countries including the UK, Germany and Australia. Its sales force promotes its international SIM cards, handsets, mobile internet portal and money transfer products to customers ranging from individual small retail outlets to large wholesalers.
The company has ambitious growth targets and plans to continue its global expansion. Sales would play a fundamental part in achieving these goals and so the senior team decided that the incentives in place for the sales teams across the world should undergo a full review.
Amir Qureshi, Lebara’s Group Director for Sales, Performance and Operations says: “Our existing sales programme had become too complex, time consuming and wasn’t meaningful to the sales team. I wanted to create a new incentive scheme that was consistent, clearly linked to the right KPIs, drove our desired behaviours, rewarded people fairly and which was relevant right through the sales hierarchy from the people in the field to the highest level of management. It also needed to incorporate effective measurement tools to allow us to analyse sales activity thoroughly and feed the results back into our business planning.
“Perhaps most importantly of all, I wanted a scheme that was unlimited. Why would you cap a sales person’s ability to make money? I believe our sales team has the potential to do a lot more than has been asked of them before, but they need the direction, motivation and incentives to do so.”
As Lebara is a fast-moving entrepreneurial company, delivering projects within short time scales is essential. Qureshi needed some support to achieve his complex objectives in the allotted timeframe and so brought in consultants and analysts from Innecto.
Working with an internal project team, their first task was to investigate what the company was currently spending on its sales scheme and what this was delivering for Lebara. Next they developed the core objectives – what did they want to drive in terms of performance and behaviours? With this in mind, they brainstormed and tested potential schemes with a group of sales directors, consulting and engaging throughout to ensure they ended up with one consistent scheme that worked across all eight countries.
“Innecto were very supportive in this area, helping us focus and apply some structure,” says Qureshi. “They are very experienced at aligning senior executives so joined me at high level internal meetings and knew exactly when to be the external advisors, putting across a best practice view and when to let me do the talking. I appreciated their professionalism and respect for us as a business.”
The new sales incentive scheme focussed on four core measures and importantly was uncapped to increase reward potential for high-end results. The scheme also allowed real time sales tracking so employees and managers could track their performance throughout the month, quarter and year and to see how they could increase their earnings. It applied to all sales people across all countries with a few local legal variations.
Once the scheme had been agreed and signed off, Qureshi and his team, with support from Innecto turned their energies to launching it in each market with a presentation in a prestigious location. The launch programme was designed to quickly engage the work force and drive motivation under the new scheme immediately, focussing on the positive benefits for the individual as well as the overall business.
“I wanted the sales people to feel genuinely inspired and excited by the launch,” says Qureshi. “We chose great venues, like the classic car museum in Berlin, and at each event displayed a red Audi A3 Cabriolet which was the new global sales prize for the year. Once we had their attention, we told them about the new scheme in as few words as possible. It was very important to me that each person there understand it to the extent that they could explain it back to me in a few short sentences if I asked them to.”
Lebara is already seeing positive results from the new scheme, both in terms of volume and routes to market which demonstrate the planned objectives are being achieved.
Lebara’s figures from the first quarter show a significant increase both in sales calls and results which indicates increased motivation and focus in the sales work force.
“Overall, working with Innecto has been a brilliant journey,” Qureshi concludes. “They understood our business objectives straight away and came up with a focussed solution in a very short space of time. I would like them stay on board with us to help us maintain the momentum and review the scheme as we go forward.”
Sarah Lardner, Client Director at Innecto adds: “This was a fascinating project to work on and I felt genuinely inspired by what Lebara were aiming to do. There is no doubt that the time scales and geographical scale put us under pressure but we rose to the challenge and delivered a great result for our client.”