Many sales organizations spend a great deal of time and money on systems, leads, and facilities only to forget the most important thing: building a strong sales team.
Before you hire your first employee, identify a “success profile,” a list of characteristics that will make a successful part of your sales team. Hire only people that match your success profile.
The most important person in a sales organization is a “scrappy sales manager,” someone who has a clear vision of the company’s direction and goals and who works tirelessly at following that direction and reaching those goals. Too much time is wasted by employees who either don’t know these things or simply don’t care. You can remedy that by hiring a sales manager who knows, cares and carries that message to the rest of the sales team.
Once you have a strong sales manager, build a sales team that will support him or her. The best way to hire proven salespeople is by asking your existing salespeople. They have worked with other great salespeople and know who will be successful with your company—and who won’t. Every sales organization has a top producer: find out who that was at the companies where your people have worked and offer them a position with your company.
During each potential employee’s interview process, include a way to simulate a real work environment prior to a full commitment of hiring.
Best Practice: Hire each employee into a 60 day probation/evaluation period. This will encourage the sales person to quickly learn your systems, processes and products without wasting any time. Once they have successfully passed the probation period, continue to offer incentives and evaluation to boost morale and prevent a drop-off in initiative and productivity.
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