In nearly every conversation I have with a sales leader, people ask about my best practices for sales hiring. Having A+ sales reps is more important than ever, especially in this macro environment and tight labor market.
So is there a secret sauce to hiring top salespeople? I argue that there absolutely is! But the secret may be counterintuitive to many…
Why is it tough to hire the best salespeople? It should be simple. Sales is a numbers game, right? Can’t you just take a quick glance at a rep’s quota performance over time and then hire those who consistently crush their number?
Unfortunately, that’s too shortsighted. Prior performance alone isn’t a predictable indicator of future success. (It is feasible for a poor performing rep to hit quota based on many other factors – great account book, inheriting active opportunities, huge inbound lead flow.)
Layer in a desire to build a diverse sales team, and again, we all need to broadly expand our aperture of where and how we are looking for the next generation of superstar sales reps. We sales leaders have an obligation and responsibility to diversify the sales talent pool. (This has always been part of my personal purpose – whether it be leading the way to have more diversity in tech, in leadership, on boards, and definitely, of course, in sales!)
Good salespeople come in all different stripes.
So, what are the universal behavioral traits for exceptional sellers?
I break down the top 8 characteristics of high-performing salespeople in this issue of The Edge - my monthly newsletter for executives. Check it out and let me know what you think.