Two Preventable Sales Hiring Mistakes


Your best salesperson, Sally, has resigned as she is moving out of state. Her territory is in your metro area selling industrial office supplies, so you will need to replace her.

Sally was hired five years right out of college and it took about a year for her to get up to speed. You don’t have time to train a new rep, so you think hiring an experienced rep is the right path.

Great news! Your neighbor’s brother-in-law, Bill, is looking for a job. He has been in sales for 15 years and just quit his job selling wireless phone services. You have met him before and remember him as a real “people person.” You invite him to your office and spend forty minutes talking about common connections and the high school football team where your kids both play. You like Bill. He is easy to talk with and he is available to work immediately. So, you hire him.

Within one month, you know something is wrong. Bill has not brought in a single order. He seems busy and says he has talked with a lot of companies, but they are happy with their current vendor.

Here are four possible reasons for his poor sales performance.

1) Ambition: Bill may not have the internal drive necessary for success.
2) Wrong fit: Bill’s sales style may not match up with the way your products need to be sold.
3) Sales Skills: Bill may not have the sales training necessary to sell in a competitive environment.
4) Management: Bill may not be getting the right sales coaching.

There are many other variables that can cause poor performance, yet these are some of the most common reasons we see time and time again. Yet, the first two reasons are preventable. With proper sales assessments, you can determine if candidates have natural “Ambition & Drive.” And, you can easily determine if their sales style fits your company.

If you would like to learn more on how to avoid sales hiring mistakes with pre-hiring sales assessments, give us a call or click here for more information.

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