Too often I find myself working with organisations that have a history that fits the following pattern;
Their new sales recruits either leave within the first 2 months or are there for life….and very few fall in between these two extremes. The organisations are forced to consider…
- Is it that the on boarding was ineffective in some cases?
- Did the skill set fall short of the job to be done?
- Was it that the cultures clashed?
- Was it that the new starters were slow to get up to speed?
- Was the job mis-sold at interview?
- Clash of team personalities?
- Personal circumstances changed
- Better job offer came up
- Was the recruitment process robust enough?
In truth, the real reason is any combination of all or any of the above at some time or another, but knowing that doesn’t really solve the problem does it?
Sales recruitment, when it goes right is seamless and perfect. When it goes wrong, you may chastise yourself and think you are dealing with the most unreliable product in the world.
The truth is, it’s rarely the product that is at fault, so we are forced to look at the sales recruitment process to establish if that is actually delivering the product we need, so that the rest of the process can proceed unhampered.
The cost of getting the sales recruitment wrong is not simply the cost of the recruitment process and possible agency finders fee, we also have to factor in the cost of:
- On boarding
- In the field training
The good news is, all of the above are quantifiable costs. It’s the cost of the gamble.
The following are costs that are less quantifiable, higher risk and can carry longer term implications for the business than the duration of the sales persons tenure. These are:
- Lost opportunities
- Longer sales cycles
- Leaving a sales patch or sector poorly protected or exposed for an extended period
- Poor pricing
- Destabilisation in the sales team
- Damage to the brand
Getting sales recruitment right takes time, lots of time. Dealing with the ultimate chameleon, the skill is in avoiding the candidate that performs well in interviews, after all, isn’t that their skill. Recruiting the sales person for their skills and attitude, and not just their address book is also a fundamental fail committed by too many organisations still.
Any sales recruitment process must have a multi stage element to it, high investment costs from candidates in terms of research and presentation preparation as well as a dramatic shift away from the ‘tell me when…’ style of interviewing towards the ‘how would you deal with…’ type of questions.
For more information on how to recruit high calibre sales people to your team, removing the risks from sales recruitment and gaining greater value from your sales recruitment budget, call for a confidential chat.
Carol Griffiths – Lead Consultant and Director
Morton Kyle Limited
0779 002 1885