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In the world of sales, motivation is key. Every sales professional knows the thrill of closing a deal, but what if there was a way to amplify that excitement and drive even more exceptional performance? Enter the "Accelerator," a strategic component of sales compensation plans designed to boost productivity and exceed targets.

Table of contents

    What is an Accelerator?

    An accelerator is a higher commission rate that kicks in once a salesperson surpasses a specific target. Think of it as a turbo boost for your earnings. Once you’ve hit your baseline goal, the accelerator propels you to greater heights with increased rewards. This mechanism not only incentivizes sales professionals to push beyond their limits but also fosters a culture of excellence and ambition.

    Why Accelerators Matter

    Motivation Beyond Targets

    Standard commission rates provide a steady income, but accelerators add an extra layer of motivation. Knowing that surpassing a target won’t just reward them with the usual commission but a significantly higher rate, salespeople are encouraged to aim higher. This often leads to an increased overall performance across the team.

    Encouraging a Culture of Excellence

    Accelerators promote a performance-driven culture. When top performers are consistently rewarded for their exceptional efforts, it sets a benchmark for others. This creates an environment where excellence is not just encouraged but becomes the norm.

    Boosting Revenue

    For sales operations, revenue operations, and finance professionals, accelerators can be a game-changer. By driving salespeople to exceed their targets, overall revenue increases. This positive impact on the bottom line is why many companies view accelerators as an investment rather than a cost.

    How to Implement an Effective Accelerator Plan

    Set Clear Targets

    The foundation of any accelerator plan is clear, achievable targets. These should be ambitious yet realistic, pushing sales professionals to stretch their capabilities without setting them up for failure.

    Define the Accelerator Threshold

    Determine the point at which the accelerator kicks in. This could be a percentage above the target or a specific sales figure. The threshold should align with your business goals and market conditions

    Communicate Transparently

    Ensure your sales team understands how the accelerator works. Transparency builds trust and ensures that everyone is on the same page, fully aware of the potential rewards for their efforts.

    Monitor and Adjust

    Regularly review the effectiveness of your accelerator plan. Are your sales targets being met? Is the team motivated? Use feedback and performance data to tweak the plan as necessary.

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    The Broader Impact on Sales Operations and Revenue Management

    Accelerators aren’t just a tool for individual motivation; they play a crucial role in overall sales strategy and revenue management.

    Sales Operations

    For sales operations teams, accelerators can streamline goal setting and performance tracking. By linking compensation directly to performance metrics, it becomes easier to identify top performers and areas needing improvement.

    Revenue Operations

    Revenue operations teams benefit from the predictable revenue growth driven by accelerators. With more salespeople hitting and exceeding their targets, revenue forecasting becomes more accurate, aiding in strategic planning and resource allocation.


    From a financial perspective, accelerators can initially seem like a cost. However, the increased revenue they drive often outweighs these expenses. It’s essential to strike a balance to ensure that the accelerator plan remains profitable without overburdening the company’s finances.

    Real-World Examples

    Tech Startups

    In fast-growing tech startups, accelerators can be particularly effective. These companies often have ambitious growth targets, and accelerators help align the sales team’s efforts with these goals. By rewarding overachievement, tech startups can quickly scale their customer base and revenue.

    Established Enterprises

    For larger enterprises, accelerators can reinvigorate seasoned sales teams. By injecting a new level of excitement and competition, even experienced sales professionals find new reasons to push beyond their usual limits.


    Accelerators are a powerful tool in the arsenal of sales compensation strategies. They motivate sales professionals to exceed their targets, foster a culture of excellence, and drive significant revenue growth. By implementing a well-thought-out accelerator plan, businesses can unlock the full potential of their sales teams, ensuring sustained success and competitive advantage.