6 years ago
May 17, 2018

Candidates Gone Wild! 4 Ways Sales Recruiters Deal with Tough Candidates

No matter which industry you work in or what type of job you have, you will come across people who are tough to deal with. Sales recruiters are no different….

Claire McConnachie Recruiter
Claire McConnachie

No matter which industry you work in or what type of job you have, you will come across people who are tough to deal with. Sales recruiters are no different.

Finding sales jobs that match an individual’s skills and abilities is the goal for sales recruiters, but some candidates make this difficult to accomplish. As part of the job, you will interact with all types of people with different personalities, career goals, and viewpoints. Some think they deserve everything under the sun, others have no drive, and some can be downright disrespectful.

What Makes a Candidate Tough to Deal With?

There are many reasons a candidate can be difficult to deal with:

  • They don’t take your advice
  • They think they know best
  • They are poor communicators
  • They feel entitled and think they are worth more than other candidates
  • They don’t respect what you do as a recruiter

While challenging, there are a number of ways to deal with tough sales candidates. We outline them here:

1. Don’t take it personally

While it’s easier said than done, try not to take it personally if a candidate is rude or has a negative attitude. Remember, many of the candidates with whom you will engage may not be happy with their careers or have recently been fired. Their poor attitude is their issue, and it has nothing to do with you.

2. Plan for deviations

One of the reasons candidates are difficult to deal with is they don’t follow your timelines. They take a long time to respond to your requests and miss deadlines. One way to address this is to build this into your recruitment plan.

3. Invest in candidates wisely

Going above and beyond to help a candidate is something sales recruiters commonly do. Be more selective in the candidates in whom you choose to invest your time and effort.

4. Drop Them

If a candidate gets to the point where they are beyond difficult to deal with, you may need to drop them. This happens sometimes in extreme cases. Recruiters only have so much time to dedicate to a single candidate. Don’t spend all your time and effort on a candidate who is not appreciative and willing to do what it takes to find a job.

More Advice for Sales Recruiters

Get more sales recruiter tips by checking out these blog posts from our experienced and knowledgeable sales recruiters:

The Top 5 Challenges for Modern Sales Recruiters

Talentology: 4 Tips to Hire Top Sales Talent

Top 5 Sales Recruiting Challenges


SalesForce Search is a sales recruiting company which specializes in the recruitment and placement of sales professionals. We recruit salespeople in every sector of the economy including, software, manufacturing, financial services and medical devices. Find the right salesperson for your organization, start your search here.

Claire McConnachie Recruiter

Claire McConnachie

Claire has 4+ years of experience in sales and recruitment. As a Director of Client Services, her main objective is to connect great people to great companies by building strong relationships with both top clients and candidates in the sales industry. She specializes in sales roles of all seniority levels for both enterprise and start-up clients North American wide. When Claire isn't networking with top talent, she enjoys being outdoors, traveling and spending time with friends & family.