Don’t get sold when you hire!

Hiring a great sales team is a critical component of your growth and future success. When they’re winning, you’re winning! In addition, the key to winning is a sales team that can deliver results consistently. So, here’s my question:

Would you enthusiastically re-hire every person on your sales team?

If you’re like the many business leaders that I have worked with, the common answer is that some team members are not performing like you expected them to when you initially hired them.

Herein lies the biggest sales hiring mistake that even the best and brightest business leaders are making!

The mistake isn’t as much about the fact that you may have gotten sold during the interview process; the mistake is in what you were sold on.

I have worked in many different industries and within large Fortune 500 companies, as well as SBE’s, and the mistake is always the same: hiring based upon experience.

Most organizations report no better than a 50% success rate in terms of hiring top sales talent.

So why is it that most organizations report no better than a 50% success rate in terms of hiring top sales talent?

The answer is simple; it is because the single most important ingredient in determining consistent sales success is not experience.

The Secret Ingredient to Hiring Your Sales Team

Sales EXECUTION is the secret ingredient to hiring a great sales team.

An employee’s execution is the difference between sales people who sell you on their ability to produce and those who actually (and consistently) produce. As we all know, saying something and doing something are two entirely different things.

Let me share an example of vetting sales execution and using the process I’ve refined over the past 10+ years.

One of my clients put the system in play within his first 60 days as the new VP of Sales for a high- tech software company. Let’s call the company, “TechSoft.” (Not their real name.) There was a very specific type of sales person he was looking for.

TechSoft’s Sales Team – Wish List

  • Highly motivated to sell and make money
  • Strong Hunting/Prospecting skills and experience
  • Excellent consultative selling skills
  • Ability to sell value over price
  • Ability to reach the C-Suite and all decision makers
  • Quick learner
  • Ability to work under moderately high pressure
  • Proven ability to sell high-ticket conceptual solutions
  • Strong closing skills

The VP targeted some specific salespeople on LinkedIn and invited them into the process.

His first hire using the new strategy we designed together, was in February. The individual had no previous experience in the industry but did have experience in software sales.

Eleven months later, the new hire was awarded Salesperson of the Year (directly from the CEO). He had the most closed new business in the company. He sold 19 new projects in his first 10 months in the new job. The average sales cycle for the company was 3-6 months.

Clearly a successful hire, which came from using a system designed for success.

Over the next few months, the salesperson who had no previous experience in software sales continued to set records, far surpassing the company’s highest hopes.

So, let’s talk about how you can be certain you don’t make the mistake of hiring a sub-par producer.

There are FIVE key aspects you must vet during your hiring process. Download the guide below.

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Jennifer Hines

Jennifer has been known as a High-Producer Sales Expert since 2000 and is the founder of Accelerated Sales & Leadership and creator of The High-Producer Sales Playbook. She helps business owners and sales leaders who are tired of salespeople who don’t produce and who want to eliminate the headaches of mis-hires and create a consistently high-producing team.
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