Frequently clients ask, "What are the top sales recruiting mistakes you see over and over again?" Here are the six that come to mind most readily:
1. Looking for the Wrong Things in Sales Job Candidates
Many sales recruiting ads read like comprehensive job descriptions, with lengthy lists of requirements and no prioritization in terms of importance. In this type of scenario sales recruiting can become an exercise in checking boxes. Unfortunately, this does nothing to favorably impact "80/20" sales team performance (where a small fraction of the salespeople produce most of the results).
My recommendation for solving this problem is to identify the top 5 to 8 characteristics and capabilities that are "must haves" for success in your company's sales position. The answers to the following questions will help you identify these characteristics:
This simple exercise provides the information required to write a highly focused, performance-based recruiting ad.
Please note that the lists of requirements for success rarely include "education" or "experience." Why? Consider the following:
2. Not Screening Resumes Properly
If you haven't isolated the top 5 to 8 characteristics and capabilities that are "must haves" for success in your company's sales position, how could you possibly screen resumes in a manner that:
The focus when screening resumes should be on looking for verbiage that indicates an individual has some or most of the critical characteristics and capabilities that you have identified. This can take anywhere from 10 seconds (for resumes that are obviously not a fit) to 3 minutes (for a dense resume from an individual with an extensive employment history).
Next week's blog post will continue the conversation by examining the remaining 4 top sales recruiting mistakes.