Why You Must Hire Salespeople Right Now

Posted by Dave Kurlan on Thu, Jun 04, 2015 @ 17:06 PM

fortune-500.jpg

Forbes conducted a survey of Fortune 500 CEO's and 82% of them said they would be hiring more people within 2 years.  Why should that be important to you?  

To answer that question, let's talk about your KPI's, or Key Performance Indicators.  The reason KPI's are more important than all of your other metrics is because they are, or should be, forward-looking indicators, rather than lagging indicators.  In the consulting and training work that I have done over the past 30 years, I have always viewed the Fortune 500 and their respective strategies as another set of KPI's.  We all remember the economic crash that hit in November of 2008.  But two years earlier, I was training salespeople that sold to Fortune 500's when, all of a sudden, out of the blue, this unexpected feedback began coming to me.

Many salespeople began reporting that there were major delays getting purchase orders on business that had already closed, all the result of spending freezes. In September of 2006, more than 2 years before the collapse actually occurred, I wrote this article about Selling in the Upcoming Recession. The behavior of the Fortune 500, two years prior to the collapse, was a major leading indicator.

When I hear that 82% of the Fortune 500 CEOs are planning to hire more people, I sense confidence, expansion, revenue growth and the need for increased capacity at all levels. And if companies are planning to grow, then that sure as heck shouldn't be limited to the Fortune 500.  

If you want to grow along with the Fortune 500, you'll need to hire salespeople. I know. You don't need any, there aren't any good ones out there, the last 11 times you tried, they failed, and it's too risky. I've heard all of the excuses. So let's dissect them one by one.

You've struggled to hire good salespeople - That means you keep doing the same thing, stupid, and getting the same results.  You need a better sales recruiting process and a very predictive sales selection tool.

Your territories are full - Is that like when the bases are full? You need a heavy hitter to come to the plate and clear the bases. In other words, any time a great salesperson comes along, you should hire that individual and find a spot, especially when it allows you to jettison an underperformer.  How do you know it's a great salesperson? Don't forget that very predictive sales selection tool!

There aren't any good salespeople out there - I don't know if I would agree that there aren't ANY, but there are certainly a lot fewer good salespeople who are actively looking. So what can you do? With a good sales recruiting process, you'll learn to write a job posting that attracts those who are out there, and find the passive job seekers too.

It's not the right time - it's too risky -  It is never risky to hire a good salesperson. Even the worst of the good salespeople bring you something, certainly enough to to pay for themselves. But good salespeople are not expenses.  They are investments, profit centers, and your economic engine! How do you mitigate the risk? You should know the answer if you've been paying attention. Objective Management Group's (OMG) accurate and predictive Sales Candidate Assessments! You can learn more and/or subscribe here.

Let's be like birds and take advantage of the lift they get when they fly behind the lead bird. Let the Fortune 500 lead the way so that we can get behind them and have an easier time of it.

Hire some good salespeople now and let the growth begin!

Topics: sales assessment, Dave Kurlan, sales candidates, hiring salespeople, sales test, predictive sales test, fortune 500

Best Example of Value-Added vs. Commodity Selling

Posted by Dave Kurlan on Thu, Mar 07, 2013 @ 20:03 PM

Top Sales WorldI wrote an article for the March 2013 issue of Top Sales World Magazine that debriefs an actual sales call.  I've written more than 1,000 articles and I believe this one is the best yet!  The article effectively details an actual value-added consultative sales call which, because of a single incorrect question, quickly became a transactional, commodity-based, price-driven call.  The example is really striking because it so clearly shows that you can do everything correctly but asking even one question the wrong way can cause a salesperson to lose the opportunity to be a trusted advisor, and fall into the abyss of commodity sellers.  

You'll have to get this month's issue (existing subscriber link) or sign up to read it.  It's on page 7.  The bonus is that there are 12 additional articles you can read after you download the issue.  The magazine will open in a separate tab or window so that you can return here and contribute your comments.  There should be a lot to share!

[Update - For the sales management side to this story, I wrote a coaching piece for EcSELL Institute and that article is available here.  In this article you'll discover the proper way to debrief this call and make sure that something like this doesn't happen again.]

I'm hosting a fast-paced, 45-minute webinar and will share some of the findings and statistics that make Objective Management Group's Sales Candidate Assessments so magically predictive.  Please join me:

Tuesday, March 12, 2013
10 AM Eastern Time
Register

I'll also be hosting our annual fall Sales Leadership Intensive in Boston.  It is simply the finest two days of sales leadership training for CEO's, Presidents, GM's, Sales Directors, Sales VP's and Sales Managers.  What makes it so special?  Click here for two videoclips (scroll to the bottom of the page) featuring some of the attendees from the fall 2012 Sales Leadership Intensive and hear what they have to say.   Please join me:

November 14-15, 2013
Westin Copley Hotel, Boston
More Information 

Topics: sales assessment, Dave Kurlan, Consultative Selling, sales management, Sales Coaching, commodity selling, sales candidate assessment, value added sale, value added seller, predictive sales test

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About Dave

Best-Selling Author, Keynote Speaker and Sales Thought Leader.  Dave Kurlan's Understanding the Sales Force Blog has earned a medal for the Top Sales & Marketing Blog award for six consecutive years.  Dave's Blog earned a Bronze Medal in 2016 and this article earned a Bronze Medal for Top Sales Blog post in 2016. Read more about Dave.

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