I don’t think anyone will debate the point that attracting and hiring top sales talent is one of the biggest challenges that companies face today. The truth is, the talent you need exists – but it’s likely working somewhere else right now. And the better the sales talent is, the more likely they’re happy in their current position.
So how do you find that top sales talent, get their attention, and get them interested in the fantastic opportunity to work for you?
Over the next few weeks, I am going to share some real problems in hiring top sales talent and some specific things you can do to find and hire better salespeople. Let’s start with how you position your job opportunity.
The Mistake Most Companies Make in Job Postings
The first problem is that most companies write a job posting that sounds like everyone else.
It may seem like a small thing but that job posting may be the only tool you have that reaches the right candidates. It’s your chance to describe the job as an opportunity, and make your company stand out.
It’s important to differentiate yourself in the sea of competition. With the historically low unemployment rate, this is an even more pressing issue. Everyone is positioning their company as the best place to work.
Everyone is positioning their company as the best place to work. What can you do to stand out from that crowd?
– Jennifer Hines
What can you do to have candidates read the posting and say to themselves, “this job was written for ME!”
Let me make an analogy. It’s highly likely that you are keenly aware of your target market(s) for your products and services. You’ve probably spent a lot of time planning your marketing and sales strategies based on these target markets. When searching for top sales talent, you need to approach it in a very similar manner. Who is your ideal sales candidate, where can you find them, and what are they searching for? Think of it as basic as what are their wants and needs, and how can your job description speak to those?
This means your job posting can’t be typical…it must be killer! You have to describe the ideal candidate and the specific job experiences in which they had success. It means you need to take time and be introspective about the traits, behaviors and past job experiences that suggest success in your role. The success of your hiring process depends on it.
Be Competitive and Creative with Compensation
The other critical reason you are not attracting top sales talent through your job posting is that the compensation package you are listing is not congruent with the expectations of the position. If you have a role that is moderately or extremely difficult, meaning there is a lot of competition, price sensitivity, etc. then you need to make sure that you are offering a package that is commensurate with the difficulty of the role. In other words, you can’t ask for a lot and offer too little or you will end up with a very small pool of candidates to choose from.
Seeking top sales talent? You can’t ask for a lot and offer too little or you will end up with a very small pool of candidates to choose from.
– Jennifer Hines
How to Create a Job Posting to Attract Top Sales Talent
The third mistake is using your sales job description for the posting. Instead of using a job description to write your job posting, start with a list of requirements that are necessary for the role.
In other words, think of the factors that will make the role particularly challenging. What are the specific sales skills that are necessary as a result of these challenges?
For example, selling a high-end conceptual solution may be a consideration that makes a role challenging. Subsequently, someone would likely need strong consultative selling skills, the ability to sell value, perhaps strong hunting skills (if leads are not supplied), etc. In addition, you would likely need someone with strong Sales DNA.
A great salesperson needs to have supportive beliefs that allow them to overcome price objections, sell at a price point that is higher than what they believe is a lot of money, and the ability to appropriately push back when they hear stalls and excuses.
Differentiating yourself in a job posting is critical. If you look at most of the postings in common job sites, you’ll see how similar they all sound. If you want to attract high-producers to your company, you must overcome this with a killer job posting that separates you from the pack and effectively works like a magnet to attract the sales talent necessary for success in your role.
If you want to learn more about attracting and hiring top sales talent, I invite you to join a live presentation on June 12th. In just 45 minutes, you’ll learn how to overcome the sales hiring challenges most organizations face.
If you can’t make the date, register anyway and you’ll get the recording the next day! If you are serious about attracting and hiring top talent and eliminating sales hiring mistakes of the past, take the time to be at this presentation.