Researchers have gone to great pains to find out what makes a sales star, how they think, and where their motivations lie. And, with those pieces in place, they’ve developed detailed personality assessments – a kind of sales aptitude test. So why aren’t more managers taking advantage? Your guess is as good as mine.
Hiring Top Sales Talent:
Hiring is one of the most important parts of a sales manager’s job. It amazes me, in this day and age, that anyone would think of hiring a salesperson without giving them an assessment first. For no more than a few dollars and a couple of hours, you can gain more information than you would in years of working with someone.
Before you commit the time and money it takes to bring a new hire in, you want to know four things – which, coincidentally, are the exact four things an assessment can tell you – how they sell, why they sell, can they sell, and will they sell. Bringing someone in without that kind of data is an expensive gamble. If you haven’t been using assessments in your hiring decisions, I’d advise you to start doing so today.
The Top 5 Critical Sales Success Skills:
When you assess someone for a sales position you may want to look at the following skills.
Self-Starting Ability: A measure of a person’s ability to initiate tasks in order to fulfill responsibilities and commitments.
Handling Rejection: The capacity to exhibit persistence and strong will in the face of objections.
Results Orientated: The capacity to clearly and objectively understand and implement all variables necessary to obtain defined or desired results.
Project and Goal Focused: The ability to concentrate one’s full attention on the project or goal at hand, regardless of distractions of difficulties.
Personal Drive: The capacity to achieve and accomplish tasks, goals and missions.
Have You Taken Any Management Assessments?
There’s an old quote I love by Lao Tse: “He who knows others is learned; he who knows himself is wise.” I don’t know much about Lao beyond his fortune cookie wisdom, but I’d be willing to bet he would have made a strong sales manager. Even without the benefit of any seminars or sales manuals – which were harder to come by around sixth century BC.
Research suggests that the most effective sales managers are people who understand themselves both their strengths and weaknesses. That is why you should also take a management assessment.
Key Sales Management Point:
You should know by now that I would advise you to never hire a salesperson without first performing a personality assessment. It’s a small investment, and one that will shed a huge amount of light onto their chances for success.
But as you try to understand personalities, don’t overlook the one that might influence your team’s success the most – your own. Take the time to assess yourself. What you find won’t just be interesting; it will make you a better leader.
Carl Henry is a management consultant. He specializes in helping companies in the selection of top sales and customer service talent. Carl is also a Certified Speaking Professional and the author of several books and articles related to sales, sales management, and customer service. He conducts seminar and webinar for clients worldwide.