Search This Blog

Thursday, 14 January 2016

Watch out these Common Pitfalls while Recruiting Sales Reps

By Sam Kariuki

Since no one goes out looking out to hire such kind of person why do so many organizations hire them. The answer lies in the shortlisting, screening, interviewing and selection process used in hiring sales people.

Most organization use the conventional interviewing process that is used for hiring other types of employees- CEO’s, Sales Managers, Accountants, Drivers, Security Officers etc. While the process may work  for all these  positions it is hardly doesn’t work for sales, since sales people are not conventional employees.

To help improve the end result of the interviewing process the recruiting and interviewing managers result to these techniques:
1.       Hire from competition
2.       Hire only experienced  sales people
3.       Hire those who are most charming during the interviews
4.       Hire those who have been referred by people we know
5.       Shortlist people on basis of application letters and resumes
6.       Hiring from recruitment firms

While these tactics may help for other positions they hardly work for sales positions because of some hidden pitfalls that you need to be aware off when using them. You may need to have some protection against likely failures resulting from them.

1. Hire from competition:

Hiring from the competition is based on the assumption that the competition knows better how to hire top producers. Unfortunately, the competition is also struggling to get it right like you.  While you consider yourself lucky to get a person from them, they could be happy to give you the person at no cost. 

It is worth noting that a top producer from your competitor may struggle to perform in your organization due to the differences in the organizations which make it hard for them to fit in even if they are from the same industry.
The other assumption made is that a person from the competition will bring with them clients and networks from their past employers. It has been demonstrated many times that this is not always the case.

2. Hire only people with sales experience

Experience adds to the strengths of a top performer but only if that person sticks with the same organization. An inexperienced candidate with the right sales aptitude will outperform an experienced person if both of them joined a new organization at the same time. So it is a major mistake to place undue emphasis on experience when you are recruiting sales people. Some technical experience may be necessary for a role but in most cases such experience might even be detrimental to sales performance.

3. Hire those who are most charming during the interviews

Just because someone puts across the right impression, has the right answers and is able to charm his way through an interview doesn’t mean he will be able to bring in sales for you.
Probably this is the biggest reason why many great sales people who would have delivered great results are dismissed while mediocre people are hired. 

Interpersonal skills are important in sales but only in the real world where sales take place not in the artificial interviewing session where everyone tries to bring out the best. 

4. Hire those who have been referred by people we know 

Our friends may desire only the best for us. But you need to appreciate that although these friends are well meaning they have no way of gauging whether a person is good for you in sales. They may be able to recommend a great accountant, lawyer or customer service executive but they are may recommend a great person who is a bad sales person for your organization.

5. Shortlist people on basis of application letters and resumes

Have you not done this before? It almost certain you have done it. Chances are that great sales people do not have great resumes and average people have the best ones. What happens is that you dismiss those people you should have considered and left with mediocre people to choose from.

With so many resume  templates  and resume writing services you may end up hiring the resume and not the person. 

6. Hiring through recruitment agencies

Without any special tools and processes the recruitment agencies result back to the above  tactics and at the end of the day they don’t shortlist for  you the  person who will give you the results you desire.
So watch out. Otherwise a professional who can help in the process.

No comments:

Post a Comment