With the right recruiting and hiring strategies, you can find and retain top sales talent. Here’s how.
Finding top sales talent for your company is a never-ending struggle. Finding the right people to sell your products or services and represent your company is critical to your bottom line. But it seems like there’s always a high turnover and you’re always hiring mediocre reps. Fortunately, with the right recruiting and hiring strategies, you can find and retain top sales talent. Here’s how.
When you’re only looking for sales talent after a rep decides to leave, you’re not going to find the best in the industry. You’ll be under time constraints and the urgency and stress placed on you will force you to compromise at the cost of talent. The longer you wait, the more work piles up in your sales department, the longer your accounts are being neglected, and the fewer sales are being made. So to get someone working on what’s been left behind, you hire one of the first candidates that email you. This is how you get mediocre reps.
Instead, create a recruitment process that is ongoing. Always keep your eye out for top sales talent and don’t settle for anything less. When you’re not in a rush to get someone on board right away, you can take the time and effort needed to recruit and hire the right candidates.
You might think that your gut feeling is all you need to spot and hire sales talent, but let’s face it, some of them turn out to be duds. Instead, use assessments to see the strengths and weaknesses of your candidates. First, you can use a sales assessment to measure sales potential and predict future success in a qualitative way. But sales success isn’t the only thing that makes some reps rock stars. In today’s business world, stellar personalities go a long way, too. Having your candidates partake in personality assessments can give you a profound look into those qualities that all sales talent have so you can weed out the ones who just won’t cut it.
If you’re only using generic job boards like Monster and Craigslist, you’re probably not going to find top sales talent. The ones who are serious about the industry and finding the right career path will be looking at industry-specific websites and publications, they’ll be going to job fairs, and they’ll be attending industry conferences. That’s where you should be recruiting your talent from—not generic job boards.
Although there are exceptions, typically the people who are unemployed and looking for jobs aren’t working for a good reason—they’re not top sales talent. The sales reps with true flair in the field already have jobs and they’re probably not looking on job boards. They’re likely not thinking about moving to a new company, but they might consider it f the right opportunity came along. When you use a head hunter, you can find those super stars, and with the right offer, you can convince them to move to your company.
If you’re not giving your reps the best opportunities to succeed, you’re doing your company a disservice. Mediocre hires could end up becoming top sales talent with the right training and development. Instead of considering termination as the first option when someone’s not standing up to your expectation, invest in them. You can help your reps overcome their weaknesses, improve their strengths, and become the super stars you know they can be.
There is great sales talent out there. Don’t get bummed out by all the duds you’ve been interviewing. Instead, make recruiting an ongoing process, use candidate assessments, look in the right places, consider headhunting, and invest in training and development. You’ll be surprised at the difference these small changes in your recruitment and hiring processes will make in your selection of candidates.
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 daughters, BBQing on a hot summer day and tropical vacations.