Look around the corporate landscape today. We have CEOs of broke companies who pay themselves millions, sales leaders who miss the number, reps who don’t make quota, marketers who provide zero leads to sales, purchasing agents who buy the cheapest product rather than the best one for the company, product managers who build products nobody wants, customer service reps who don’t care about the customers, human resource managers who create red tape instead of eliminating it. You know who you are.What Are You Worth resized 600


Sometimes we need a reminder that we aren’t as good as we think we are. Nobody gets better when they’re told how great they are every second of the day. The challenge with corporate America is that people run to HR every time someone tells them they did a bad job. Allow me to deliver the message on behalf of your company: If you aren’t delivering what you were hired to produce and you are mailing it in, you are doing a bad job.


Ask yourself this question: What Am I Worth?


Companies evaluate sales compensation plans every year. Employees constantly complain they are underpaid, undervalued and underappreciated. The funny thing is: When you ask someone what they should make, it’s often met with deafening silence, followed by a weak response, like: “…more than I’m making right now!” Really? You’re complaining you are underpaid, yet cannot effectively articulate your own worth? Hello? McFly?


If you made 50% of your quota last year and think you were underpaid, you are delusional. If that company is still stroking you a paycheck, drop to your knees and thank the heavens. When I was a young and inexperienced sales rep, I was that guy too before a guy named Matt Sharrers told me I sucked. I thought I was God’s gift to sales because I had some talent and closed a few deals. The truth was I couldn’t sell my way out of a paper bag and my results were awful. I was lazy and rather than put my head down and work hard to get paid, I grew dissatisfied and decided it was time to “take my talents” to another company. What I quickly learned when I entered the job market was that my lackluster results, coupled with a meager W2 qualified me for lower level jobs and compensation than the one I had. It was one of many humbling cold showers I’ve taken in my life, and I deserved it. The truth hurt when it came time to be honest about my market value relative to my performance.


Let’s be honest, it’s easier to complain about being undervalued and underpaid than it is to face the harsh reality of the truth.


Here’s a little exercise to put yourself through to better understand what you’re worth. Download it here – It’s nothing fancy. All you need to complete it, is a willingness to be honest with yourself. I recommend doing it once, taking a few days to think about it, and then revisiting it again. It requires a certain degree of self-awareness and honesty. Rush through it and you’re missing the point. You will know when you’ve arrived at the right place. From there, answer the question: What Am I Worth?




Answering that question can lead to some liberating and exciting places. It did for me.


If you think your sales compensation plan undervalues the work you do for your organization, have an authentic conversation with yourself about the true value you bring and what it’s really worth.


Want help determining if your sales team is worth what you’re paying them? Ask us about our talent assessments and sales compensation evaluations here.


Ryan Tognazzini

Follow @RyanTognazzini

Follow Sales Benchmark Index @MakingTheNumber