Absurd, right? So why do most companies not actively recruit salespeople?
Ignoring the decision to replace that mediocre sales rep is costing more than you think. With so many below target salespeople hanging on, maybe its time to analyze what the cost is.
Let us assume an intermediate salesperson with a quota of $1,000,000 and a draw of $60,000. Let’s further assume that they’re at 50% of target — which might be optimistic.
A lot of managers put wasted leads or lost customers at the bottom of the list. That’s a mistake. With competition growing from every corner, good leads are expensive. Assume losing two customers or deals at $120,000 to the company.
And the rep missed out on $500,000 in quota that the right hire would have made. Assume a 66% gross margin or $300,000 missing from your bottom line.
Training — $10,000.
Overhead — supplies, infrastructure, admin — $18,000.
Benefits — $12,000
Severence — one month + HR/Legal — $10.000
Base comp — 12 months $60,000
Hiring — in-house or outside help time, costs — $20,000
And then of course, managers always spend more time trying to train a failing rep.
The AAPS Profiler Sequence avoids all these costs — and saves you time. All for less than half a month’s draw. And we guarantee it or it doesn’t cost you a nickel.
Google “Sales Compensation Strategy” and you’ll find over 1 million entries.
There’s a lot of good work out there on Strategy and Vision and Formulas. I’m not here to add yet one more article on a subject that’s had enough said…
One thing that’s interesting is none of the top 10 listed articles contain what I’m here to share.
We onboard our clients individually. Every one of our 2000+ clients has had to answer this question on compensation:
“If someone does a great job for you — knocks it out of the park, what will they earn? $$$$$$$”
The answer to that question varies based on location and industry.
But one thing is common when they get it right…
“A lot” is the right answer.
Good salespeople are high practicals. We don’t wake up in the morning and ask ourselves, “How can I serve humanity?”
Top sales performers wake up and ask ourselves, “Where’s the money and power?” “Where can I get a greater sense of control?”
In capitalism the answer is money. And if you want to attract and keep top sales performers you need to give them a fair shot at $100K plus.
The company ideal is that Type A, kick-butt salesperson. However – the ads are often written by someone from Human Resources. So you have polar opposite personalities trying to make the right hire.
A Human Resources “salesman” ad asks for somebody with customer service skills or account management skills or someone with emotional understanding. Sure, great skills. But you have NO chance of attracting a top sales performer. Customer service is important for companies. But it’s not sales. Sales directors and sales managers have to win the Wrestlemania bout and write their own ads, or they’ll have zero chance of finding the superstars they want.
Yanik talks about hiring Millennials. He says Millennials, “are going to take jobs that may or may not pay them as much. They want “a mission or a cause, because they want to make a difference.”
Yanik is right for most positions in an organization…
With one HUGE exception: sales positions.
Salespeople who are successful are still motivated by the same practical values. Think about it, do your best salespeople want to save the whales or make a lot of money? Top salespeople wake up asking themselves how they can have greater control of their environment.
Our data shows sales hires who are not money or power motivated will stall and top out early. Salespeople must be High Practicals we base this on data from our 2000 clients and 16 years of experience successfully picking salespeople.
We’re happy to share our data with you. Hook up with me on LinkedIn and I’ll show you what we’re looking at https://www.linkedin.com/in/alanfendrich
I’ve just finished my cousin, Martin Greenfield’s book “The Measure of a Man.” It is the story of an amazing life. From surviving Auschwitz and Buchenwald concentration camps to becoming suit maker to world leaders. American Presidents including Truman, Eisenhower, Busch, Clinton and Obama are all dressed by Martin. Presidential hopefuls including Bloomberg, Collin Powell and The Donald are among his customers.
As a selling professional, “Salesmanship in Action” would be my subtitle.
Martin is a great story teller — and an amazing salesman. Written from the most personal perspective, you won’t be able to put it down.
Growing up on Long Island in NY, my Dad would take me to Brooklyn when he had his suits made by Martin.
As a young American boy, I remember the rows of workers in the factory. Many of the workers had numbers tattooed on their arms from the concentration camps.
Martin would stop at the workstations of the hundreds of workers. He’d make small talk in Yiddush and introduce my Dad to them.
Every Passover Seder we would go to Martin and Arlene’s home.
We all knew the story of how Martin, the orphan, had arrived in the US after the Second World War. And how he had become a master clothier for some of the world’s most successful men. Yet, we were forbidden to ask Martin about the number on his arm.
I was with Martin in Jerusalem two years ago. I saw how Martin, at 83, is still a vigorous and persuasive salesman. We went to the Great Synagogue together on Saturday morning. Within 20 minutes, Martin had met and was invited to a meal with some of Jerusalem’s most successful men. No pressure, just pure charm and warmth — and never having met any of them. Of course, he told me later, some of those men ended up wearing Martin Greenfield suits.
During a recent client service call I heard of a new Post Office program I couldn’t believe. But, heck if it’s not true.
This is a ground breaker as far as I am concerned. If you’ve got a local business targeted business to consumer, this program is amazing.
Bars, restaurants, grocery and specialty stores should be all over this.
You can’t mail business to business using the program. This makes no sense — (oh that’s right, it’s the guverment…) But still, for business to consumer this is a no-brainer.
We’ve been working with clients to hire top performing salespeople for 16 years. In truth, from time to time, I feel like I’ve said it all.
And then, I read an article on LinkedIn and realize, once again, why more than 3 out of 4 sales hires fails.
Because we do this, we know the values and personality style ahead of time. We know the applicant matches the values and style of most top salespeople.
In the interview you’re looking for the applicant to give examples in their lives of:
• Follow through
• Ability to overcome adversity
Second, structured interviews get you high quality answers. Never “wing it” in an interview. Have all your questions planned and prewritten.
Third, ask the same questions, in the same order, of each applicant. By nature we tend to like people we “bond” with. But we’re not looking for a friend here. We are trying to determine if they applicant is tough enough to do the hard work of selling.
By asking the same questions in the same order, you are able to compare the applicant’s answers. This is a key point.
Finally, never ask the following questions that Afa Front in the LinkedIn article suggests. They are too open-ended. You won’t get any information that will help you pick the best applicant.
1. Tell Me About Yourself
This is a horrible question. It gives the applicant to take control of the interview. If you believe that is what selling is about, you’re bound to hire duds.
2. What’s Your Greatest Strength?
Another bad question because you won’t be able to compare the answers you get. One applicant will tell one lie, another applicant will tell another lie.
3. Why Should We Hire You?
What would be a right answer? Exactly there is no way to score this answer. Skip it.
4. Do You Have Any Questions for Us?
Can you imagine a lawyer asking that of a witness in a court room? Bad question. Only gives up control of the interview.
Delivering a structured, scripted interview for every sales applicant puts you ahead of 3 out of 4 sales hirers – and is one of the keys to successful sales hiring.
My first challenge when I went in search of my first job after college was to “create a resume.”
In 1974 I didn’t just fire up Google and type “examples of resumes for salespeople”. Nope. I had to go to the library and find books with examples. As I flipped through the books on resumes I searched for style, but I kept my eye open for content.
As I searched, one line caught my attention and I used it in every resume. At the top of the resume I typed: “Demonstrated ability to Conceive, Plan and Implement.”
Of course I was a 20 year old and idealistic. But I made a decision to be the kind of person who embodied those characteristics. I built them into my personality — particularly when it came to my work life
I am second generation American on my father’s side. My grandparents arrived at Ellis Island on a boat, alone, without their parents at ages 13 and 14. They came from Eastern European families. My grandmother came from Czechoslovakia and my grandfather from Hungary.
It was tough for new immigrants with poor English skills and no capital to start a business. My father was proudly the first Fendrich to go to college.
We grew up hearing stories of our European family — especially stories of family “characters.”
One story we heard was the “Uncle Yomish Story.” Pronounced YO-mish, he was one of my Grandfather’s brothers.
Uncle Yomish always had a new scheme for how he was going to get rich in America. But he was long on conceiving, short on planning with no implementation.
The rest of the siblings “buckled down.” They did whatever work they had to do to put food on the table for their families. But Uncle Yomish did not. He was always coming up with ideas, but he failed to implement.
There’s Yiddish expression which translates to “The Doer is more important than the Dreamer.”
When hiring salespeople, the AHS 4 Part Interview Module is one of the keys to discovering how well your applicant implements.