Here’s the Big 3… use systems to leverage your time, have a repeatable process so it is manageable, and install the right metrics to insure you are getting the results needed.
Simple, right? Maybe not so if you are starting from scratch. However, there are best practices that you can install today to find top reps fast.
I’ll specifically address how to find top reps fast in a moment. First, as you begin your recruiting process, start building the right sales infrastructure to leverage your investment before it is too late.
Hiring top reps without having a path to success for them and for the company will torpedo all the work that was required to get them onboard. Don’t fool yourself, successful reps don’t get there by themselves. They had success at other companies in part, because of the company culture and infrastructure that supported them. Without having the right setup, you will be less successful and experience unnecessary and expensive turnover.
Here are the foundational pieces for a winning sales infrastructure:
Comp Plan, Ramp Plan, Target Account Profile (TAP), Message, Pipeline Milestones that align with a Sales Process, & New Opportunity Velocity Metrics. Here’s a small treatment of each for your consideration:
Compensation Plan: Top reps deliver top results and earn top commissions. Make sure your On-Target-Earnings (OTE) reflect above average market compensation to attract attention. The key is make sure these earnings come with a high standard of performance (but realistic) that deliver profitable revenue for the company. No high profit for the company, no high earnings for the rep.
Ramp Plan: The first 30, 60 & 90 days is critical for a new representative’s success. The main thing is to make the main thing, the main thing. In the first 90 days the main thing is to bring in enough net new QUALIFIED opportunities into the pipeline, with enough velocity AKA QUANTITY to reach the company goal. In absence of this your new rep WILL FAIL! To accomplish this, new reps don’t need to know everything, they need to know just a few things very well. Focus on these few and reinforce, reinforce, reinforce.
Target Account Profile & Message: Leveraging a salesperson’s time is job one to profit the company and make them successful. Having their territories identified with the right number of TAP accounts that drive the right Average Deal Size, identified potential Decision Makers with contact information and an understanding of the message that quickly qualifies an opportunity with high probability of close, will leverage this very expensive resource.
Pipeline Milestones, Sales Process & New Opportunity Velocity Metric: Having defined pipeline milestones will drive probabilities metrics for quantities and quality standards. These metrics also support accurate forecasting, accountability and coaching. Here’s a quick example… New opportunity stage defined, is a Decision Maker with a problem that has a business consequence, that needs to be addressed and solved with your solution. Now your sales process supports this by giving the right message, discovery questions, and prospecting process. This opportunity, for example, would have a 25% probability to close, by calling on the right TAP we would also have a known Average Deal Size. Therefore, we can figure out how many net new opportunities a new sales rep needs to be successful per month, quarter and year… AKA, New Opportunity Velocity Metric.
Now let’s find top reps fast!
To find, qualify and hire top sales talent FAST there are three strategies to follow, they are:
- Make an organizational commitment to hire the best and do not settle for less, but you’ve already done that;
- Learn exactly what a top performer looks like, so you know one when you see one; and finally,
- Have a systematic approach that is measurable and repeatable.
What Does “TOP REP” Mean? There is a line in the sand when it comes to top performers in the sales world. Here’s a staggering number to consider…
Of one million salespeople evaluated, 82% of those were under quota and not meeting job expectations. The available market of top performers is less than 5%. Even though 20% of sales people are overachievers, only 25% of those are in the market at any one given time. Therefore, you better know exactly what you are looking for before you start.
Here’s some high-level metrics on what to look for and what to avoid. There are four types of salespeople, they are…
Those who can’t and won’t;
Those who can’t and will;
Those who can and won’t, and
Those who can and will.
Can and will salespeople are the top 20%. This is what to look for when qualifying top sales candidates.
Can vs. can’t has to do with internal sales DNA or capabilities to execute in a selling environment when it counts. Will vs. won’t has to do with motivation or the lack of, to do the things that other unsuccessful people are unwilling to do.
Selling environment, selling skills, personal presence, presentation skills, EQ, listening skills and more are also important considerations when identifying a top sales candidate.
If you’d like to know the 3 key strategies to hiring the top talent, the 11 attributes to look for in a top sales rep and a screening system that includes questions and instruction on how to conduct the interview, you can go HERE .
The top 20% producers sell 120% more on average than your currently employed average salesperson. The top 4% (AKA the top 20% of the top 20%) produces 250% more than average. The good news is that with the right system it can take as little as 5-man hours of actual time to vet all these candidates and find the one or two that meet the standard fast.
Here’s the system to vetting 100+ candidates fast so you can find one top sales rep. It has 5 critical process steps, which are:
- Defines exactly the right candidate for your company,
- Attracts the critical mass of “right” applicants to apply,
- Has an automated system to ID the top reps with the Can & Will factor fast,
- Has a quick qualifying step to confirm fit, and
- Has a non-traditional face-to-face interview to confirm top performance intangibles.