- June 3, 2005
- Posted by: Dave Kurlan
- Category: Understanding the Sales Force
In Massachusetts we have a 30-year old crosswalk law which basically states that a motorist must stop for a pedestrian in a crosswalk. In theory, the law is good, and promotes safety, eliminating doubt as to whether a motorist will stop if you are in the middle of the road when they approach. In reality, the law sucks because self-centered morons believe that they can step off the curb, right as you approach, and dare you to hit them.
The sales version of the crosswalk law occurs when the growth strategy calls for recruiting new salespeople and management turns to headhunters. Instead of attracting, hiring and developing A-Players they decide to bring on salespeople with an existing book of business. Much like the crosswalk law, this works once in a while but more often it doesn’t. These targeted salespeople, now high-paid account managers, usually fail to bring the desired business with them. When the business does come as promised, these salespeople live off of it, don’t develop new opportunities, don’t respond to sales management, fail to become role-models that new salespeople can emulate and are more trouble than they are worth. They walk right in front of you and dare you to hire them, believing that they have power on their side. They possess something that you want and you’ll pay dearly for it. They win whether the business moves with them or not. You lose either way.
Be smart about your recruiting strategy. It’s important to bring in new blood and it’s even more important to be specific about who you want to attract. Just make sure you are attracting the right candidates with the right experiences for the right reasons. In addition, it is imperative that you utilize an accurate, sales specific pre-employment assessment to recommend only those who will succeed in your business.