A top sales person should display at least some of these characteristics during the interview process. Sales Managers need to recognize them.
How many great sales people have slipped through your hands? If you don’t know the answer to this question, you may also not be aware at just how much revenue your company lost as a result of failing to grab the perfect candidate when they were right in front of you.
A great sales person is literally worth their weight in gold, and can increase your revenue streams exponentially. A bad sales person will end up costing you four to eight times their salary in terms of training, invested time and lack of performance.
How do you know if you’re dealing with a stellar candidate?
A top sales person should display at least some of these characteristics during the interview process. As a sales manager, if you spot these traits — you need to move quickly before someone else takes this candidate out of your hands.
1. A strong drive to succeed. A lazy sales person is a bad sales person. The ideal candidate will display strong characteristics of being self motivated, and willing to do what it takes to meet their goals. In fact, they’ll set their own goals rather than waiting for someone else to give it to them. This type of sales person will be your strongest asset because they drive themselves.
2. Extreme self confidence. The perfect sales candidate will display powerful and confident body language, even when facing a top sales manager. They will be completely at ease with you and ready to strike up a conversation. A candidate that shrinks into themselves, hesitates before starting a conversation or looks a little lost is not the right candidate for a sales position.
3. People-centric. Introverts do not need to apply — your perfect sales candidate is going to be people centric. Do they make instant eye-contact with the sales manager and offer a firm handshake? Do they ask personal questions of you during the getting to you know phase of your interview? If someone comes off shy and dull, then they most likely are shy and dull on the phone, in sales presentations or at trade shows and that’s not a good fit.
4. Look for memorable qualities. A great sales person takes the time to build relationships. If you find yourself having trouble remembering a specific candidate’s interview, if they don’t stand out to you, this is a sign that they didn’t do a good enough job “being memorable,” and you need people on your team that definitely stand out in a customer’s mind.
So, you’ve gotten through the interview process and you managed to find the absolute perfect candidate for the job. What do you do now? As a sales manager, ideally you should have hiring authority and you need to exercise it right now. Top sales people typically are well aware of their abilities and they’ll find a job — don’t worry about that. The only thing you should be worried about is whether or not you’ll be the one hiring them.
A poor hire costs you money, a great hire makes you money. This equation needs to be kept at the front of your mind throughout all of the steps of the hiring process. Don’t delay. When the right sales person comes along, hire them on the spot. Trust us, they’re worth it.
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.