1 year ago
September 12, 2016

How to Attract Sales People and How to Retain Them

Understanding how to attract sales people and how to retain them can help you create and maintain a highly effective sales team. Keep reading.

Rhys Metler

At one point or another, every sales manager has wondered how to attract sales people and how to successfully retain top talent. When you’re constantly hiring duds that can’t sell, and losing your top sales people to your competitors, you know that your talent attraction and retention strategies need to change.

Knowing how to attract sales people and retain them can help you gain an edge over your competition and can help you increase sales. You need to create and maintain a top sales team in order to be the best in the industry.

Here are some attraction and retention tips.

Attraction: Always Be Recruiting

You likely won’t attract the best of the best if you only give applicants a two-week window to apply. Instead of only hiring when you have an open position, make recruitment a long-term, ongoing process. Continuously post job ads and interview candidates. When you find sales people that you love, nurture your relationships with them until a position does open up.

Attraction: Create an Amazing Talent Brand

Top sales people want to know that a company is a good fit before they apply. Creating an amazing talent brand can help you get them excited to work for you. Create and share content online that tells prospective candidates about your company culture, about the perks of working for you, about the types of personalities that thrive in your work environment, and about the different roles that you have open. Consider using video to showcase just what kind of employer you are.

Attraction: Proper Compensation

Even though sales people are motivated to apply by a variety of different aspects of your company, such as your reputation and talent brand, your sales compensation plan still matters—a lot. If you want to get top sales talent on board, you need to be able to prove that you can compensate them financially for their talents, skills, and hard work. You get what you pay for, after all.

Because top sales people are confident in their ability to sell, they tend to be more attracted to incentive-based compensation plans than a higher fixed salary.

Retention: Invest in Their Development

Learning how to attract sales people is only half of the puzzle. Once you have them in your grasp, you don’t want to lose them. So to retain your top talent, invest in their continuous development.

Give them opportunities to develop their skills. Offer them a mentor or hire an executive coach to work with them to help them hone their specific skills, and you’ll keep them around for the long term. Send them to seminars and conferences so they can learn from the best. Let them know you want them to succeed.

Retention: Provide Challenges

Top sales people will eventually get bored if their jobs become too easy. They’ll start to look for more challenging opportunities if they don’t find them in house.

Give them new responsibilities and increasingly difficult challenges. Assign them bigger territories or your biggest accounts. Move them into more complex sales situations.

Retention: Know What Drives Them

Sales managers need to know how to motivate sales people in order to retain them. To understand what motivates them and what tactics you should use, get to know them as individuals. Learn why they work so hard. Understand what drives them to succeed. Is it money? Is it praise? It is the opportunity to climb the corporate ladder? When you discover what your top sales reps are working towards, you can motivate them by effectively helping them reach those goals.

Knowing how to attract sales people and how to retain your top earners is one of the top skills of an effective sales leader. Use these tips and build the stellar sales team that you want and need.  

Rhys Metler

Rhys is a tenacious, top performing Senior Sales Recruiter with 11+ years of focused experience in the Digital Media, Mobile, Software, Technology and B2B verticals. He has a successful track record of headhunting top performing sales candidates for some of the most exciting brands in North America. He is a Certified Recruitment Specialist (CRS) and has expert experience in prospecting new business, client retention/renewals and managing top performing sales and recruitment teams. Rhys enjoys spending quality time with his wife, son, and two daughters, BBQing on a hot summer day, tropical vacations and cottaging.