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If you are one of the 78% of the business leaders with whom  I have spoken to in 2005, the single biggest challenge you are facing is finding and recruiting excellent sales people. Inwardly you are exasperated. You took a lot of time, spent a lot of money and invested a lot of energy in getting the resource up to speed. Now  6 months into the relationship, you begin to realise that this is not the right person for your organisation.

Let’s look at the financial cost of making the wrong decision 6 months previous. How many hours of your time did you spend in the recruitment process, and how much per hour is your time valued at? How much did you pay the recruitment agency? How much have you paid this person in the last 6 months? What expenses have you incurred while working with them?  How much off-target are they? How much more revenue could they have brought in had they done a good job? How much will it cost to deselect this person? Add up all these figures. This is your cost of poor recruitment”. Like it or not, you own this number.

Does the figure scare you enough to want to read on?

Here are the top 5 things that should set your alarm bells ringing when interviewing potential sales candidates for a job on your team,

Has this person a need for approval?

If they do, these people typically have difficulty asking hard questions, avoid confrontation and contentious issues and are afraid of loosing their prospects approval. They will sell well to people they get on with and will put more energy into creating the relationship than progressing the sales.

Do they get emotionally involved?

If this person is someone whom you think can get emotionally involved rather than remaining focused, expect they will loose control of meetings and their listening skills will weaken.

What records have they in their collection?

We all have about 55 beliefs and values that serve us well (e.g. “I am skilled at dealing with decision makers”) or can impact negatively on our effectiveness (“I hate making cold calls”). How many self-limiting beliefs does this person have?

What’s their buying process?

If this person were making a buying decision for themselves (a new car for example), how would they make the decision? Do they typically need to think things over, comparison shop, look for the cheapest option or think a small amount of money is a lot? Then expect them to be overly sympathetic to a customer who wants to do the same.

How do they relate to money?

If this is a person who is uncomfortable with money, then don’t be surprised if they overly empathise with their customer over the budgetary issues. Likewise you can expect them to stop short of digging deeper to unearth concerns and find solutions.

Do you want to get your sales recruitment right, hire the right person from  the beginning and spend your time in dealing with external customers as opposed to internal HR issues? Then get experienced help. Get an informed and skilled second opinion, someone who has a speciality in getting sales recruitment right first time. Someone like . There is a price for using such a resource.[/box]

You can also download the PDF