One good place to start is with a book, and I recommend both “The Sales Compensation Handbook” edited by Stockton Colt and “Compensating New Sales Roles” by Colletti and Fiss. In addition, there is a very helpful course offered by World at Work, “Elements of Sales Compensation.” And The Cygnal Group’s principals regularly lead introductory seminars for WorldatWork and SHRM groups. And you’ll find a lot of good information right here on this site.
Sales compensation design is exciting and challenging, but it is high-stakes work. There are terrific ways to really create value for your company, as well as wrong answers that can create a disaster. If your company’s challenges are significant, a consultant can help.
Donya Rose, CSCP, is Managing Principal of The Cygnal Group. She is a recognized expert in sales compensation plan design, regularly speaking at conferences and writing published articles. She serves clients from F500 to growth-stage businesses, and advises WorldatWork on sales compensation hot topics and best practices.