Comment by Anna Zammit, one of Australia's leading Business Development Strategists.
Your best product or service isn’t going to sell unless you have the right people selling it. However, finding the right sales person can be difficult because we tend to employ people that we like. We like people who are similar to us. If someone has the same personality or the same values as we do, we like them. If we like them, we hire them. That strategy is fundamentally flawed because we are hiring with our emotions. We emotionally buy the person we are going to hire.
Hiring people we like does not necessarily mean that they can sell. Here is another consideration; maybe you hired them because they can sell to you. It is important to remember, not everybody buys like you. Think how different all of your customers are. If you hire a sales person based on how you like to buy, then you will have to work a lot harder to reach your targets. There are 4 different buying and selling types, this means approximately 25% of the population buys like you do.
When hiring sales people there are a number of factors that need to be taken into consideration including:
1. Organisational cultural and value fit.
2. Have the ability to build rapport and be likeable.
3. Understand whether they are analytical or creative in their thinking. (Which is best often depends of the job.)
4. Are they more aligned to sales or customer service?
5. Are they persuasive in their language?
6. Can they be assertive?
7. Are they likely to give discounts or over service customers? There is a difference between good service and over service, if they over service then they will not have enough time to source new leads and generate new business.
8. Can they reach their key performance indicators and their budgets? Is there evidence of this in their past results?
9. Consider their communication styles and if it suits the position.
10. Consider having the candidate profile with a profile that is specifically designed to identifying sales traits.
If you recruit the wrong sales person, it is costly. Regardless of whether you employ someone from the same or similar industries, our research shows that, on average, a company needs to invest six months salary into a sales person before there is a return on that investment. A sales person needs time to understand your customer base, your products, pricing, CRM, socialise into the business and learn systems and processes. This of course all takes time.
Can any business really afford to invest in six months worth of salary without a return on that investment? If you get it wrong you can find yourself very quickly having to find another replacement, which now means twelve months without a return on the investment. Ideally, you want to be able to engage the right person first time around.
Don’t pick someone you like rather someone who can do the job, hire slow and fire fast.
Anna Zammit is one of Australia's leading Business Development Strategists. A Sales Trainer and Master Coach with over twenty-five years sales experience in direct marketing and sales, retail and corporate sales, Anna is no ordinary business women. Anna has been recognised both in Australia and internationally for her business development achievements.
Anna is the Founder and Managing Director of Xsell; the foremost provider of organisational and personnel training solutions in Western Australia. Some of Xsell's core areas of proficiency include business training and coaching, recruitment to local, national and international organisations, leadership development and business development strategy. Xsell also consults to businesses regarding sales strategies and strategic support.
Anna's has worked with an impressive list of clients, some of which include:
Deutsche Bank Private Banking
Ernst & Young
P: 08 9260 0000