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A Well-Hired Employee Will Add To Your Company Culture, Not Detract From It


Hiring a new sales employee is dicey, at best, but if you think of your needs in a comprehensive manner you will be more likely to attract the right candidate.  There is an inherent risk to the process and you should verify that your business is in a position to take a financial hit if the candidate does not work out.  You have to have the infrastructure in place to train the new hire and that also takes time and consideration.

The type of business you run will help narrow the candidate list down for you.  I know a hiring manager that will only hire outgoing, attractive men and women for his business.  He sells primarily through conferences and having good-looking people in his booth guarantees a much higher rate of interest from the attendees than if he had average looking sales people.  The sales cycle only runs for a few days a month and it is critical for him that the first impression generates immediate results.

This is in large contrast to the business that sells services to local “mom and pop” stores.  In this case, attractiveness is not the main requirement for success.  The qualified candidate needs to be more independent, have a friendly and approachable manner and be seen as an advocate for the business by the store owners.  In this case, good looks are replaced by independence, knowledge and friendliness.  The sales person selling to small business owners needs a higher sense of empathy than the “convention sales person” and the hiring manager needs to be aware of that.

If you are a technology firm trying to drum business from the military, then having sales people with military backgrounds is critical.  An even better qualification would be if the sales person has a ring from one of the military academies.  There is a fraternity inherent in the military that will make it nearly impossible for someone on the outside to be successful.

Once you have hired your sales person, make sure to properly train him or her.  Sales people are, by nature, independent, but rarely will they be able to hit the floor running without at least some guidance.  They need to be trained on the CRM software, who the people are in the firm to help them complete their job, and the actual sales process the company has adopted.  I am a big proponent of mentoring.  It always helps the newly hired salesperson to have someone to turn to for answers and it adds an immediate level of camaraderie.  Also, with the qualified mentor, training on the job is very successful.  I regularly preach about it and strongly believe in the process. Finally, if your firm already has an established method for sales then the salesperson needs to be educated in that process.

A well-hired employee will add to your company culture, not detract from it.  This will only be achieved by having properly researched the need and how you will fulfill the need for a new hire.  You will find the hiring process is actually easier and more clearly defined if you have taken the proper steps to identify the need and role your employee will play.  Remember, in the event the relationship does not work out, the responsibility lies equally with the hiring manager as it does with the employee.

What do you think?

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