Talent management is a continuous topic at most organizations, but what is not always spoken about is: certain roles hold more weight than others. According to recent research, the average tenure of a sales rep is now 1.5 years. That might not sound too bad, but when you consider the amount of time needed to train and “ramp up” sales development, hiring the right salespeople starts to become a much bigger issue.
Over the course of my career, I personally have hired, trained, and unfortunately fired, hundreds of sales professionals at all kinds of organizations. My career is dedicated to helping companies drive revenue through their sales talent--a major part of that is making the right hiring decisions. Regardless of what industry you’re in, there are certain qualities you must seek out to find your “hunters,” the people who are going to chase and close new business opportunities. Below are 3 simple questions that can bring you clarity in your hiring decisions:
What is your 30-60-90 day business development plan?
This is my favorite question to ask. The person you are interviewing is likely a senior sales professional who is looking for an $80k-$150k salary base, a number they claim to be worth. That might be true, but for you to make that kind of investment it’s worth it to ask for a little more from them.
What is your 30-60-90 day business development plan? Ask this question and have them put it in writing so you can review it together. What they come back with will be extremely telling. You’ll be able to sort between the truly experienced, using a strategy and plan to grow, vs. the people who “just wing it.” In fact, you’ll likely lose about 50% of your applicants at this point. Which is a good thing! The 50% of applicants that you’re left with have a much higher success rate for your business.
What is your sales system?
If you want someone to be a long-term player in your organization they need to have a sales system. Yes, the content that you’re selling does matter. However, any great salesperson will tell you that sales is an act of discipline. It’s about having a network of people to connect with on a regular cadence that eventually drives closing a deal. What that cadence is can vary; there are infinite ways to do it. Your application should be able to give examples of their own sales system, how they have closed multiple deals in the past, and will likely have a unique system of their own that has worked for them.
What sales development training have you invested in?
Just like any other profession, Sales Development requires ongoing training. How much time does your applicant spend investing in their professional development? For those who are new in their career, the amount of time should be higher. Sales have become such a widespread profession, that many people seem to have just “fell” into the career path. Which is great! But how they embrace and better their now chosen career can tell you how they will embrace working for your organization. You want to hire people who invest in themselves.
The Sales Group helps organizations hire smarter and develop a sales system we call R.A.M.P (Revenue Acquisition Management Process.) We provide our clients across North America with actionable sales data that is proven to help drive revenue. Feel free to reach out to me anytime at Donna.Gliha@salesgroup-global.com
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