Are you hunting for "sales wolves" or are "sales vampires" hunting you?
If you are fortunate enough to have one or more true sales wolves on your team, you already know that they consistently outsell 80-90 percent of the rest of your sales team. Naturally, you wish you could clone them because sales would go up - SIGNIFICANTLY.
Sales vampires are the opposite of the sales wolves. They suck the lifeblood out of your bottom line and they destroy accountability in your sales culture. Unfortunately, most sales teams have plenty of sales vampires...
How many sales vampires do you have?
Recently, a new Client began using our sales personality test and algorithm (think Moneyball) to hire a couple of sales wolves. After a half dozen candidates, I could tell they were becoming frustrated. They were frustrated because the only candidates they were attracting were sales vampires.
How were they attracting sales vampires? Because they were following the standard practice that many companies use to attract and identify sales candidates. Most companies put a notice up on their website, place an ad in the local newspaper, perhaps use a local free ad website, and perhaps use a job board.
Some companies are more aggressive and more strategic. They advertise on LinkedIn and / their Facebook page. And some have a full blown recruitment program that still attracts primarily sales vampires.
While the above-described strategy can work at times, it is based more on luck. The outcome is you get "has beens" and "never will be" salespeople this way.
In most cases the salespeople that are looking for jobs either are fresh out of college or they have burned through their draw against commission. The people applying to work in your company who burned through their draw are usually "sales vampires" and they are hunting you.
Sales wolves do not have to actively seek employment opportunities - jobs come to them...
If you truly seek sales wolves then you must "hunt" for them where they live. Few sales wolves are looking for a job and the primary reason is simple - sales wolves do not have to actively seek employment opportunities - jobs come to them.
Jobs come to sales wolves because others notice their sales performance and keep them in mind until they have a hiring need.
If you are committed to maximizing profits, you must be a full-time sales wolf hunter.
How to hunt for sales wolves...
Be a "sales wolf only company"- Every industry has the company everyone wants to work for - particularly sales wolves. And those companies often have such a selective hiring process that sales vampires select themselves out of the hiring process by not even applying. Be that company.
Look to your competitor from hell - Do you notice that a particular salesperson from a competitor is taking business away on a consistent basis? I would assess them to identify if they are a true sales wolf. When you interview them, ask them the names of salespeople they hate to compete against.
Engage the salesperson selling your car, furniture, or cell phone who impresses you - When you encounter a sales professional who does a particularly good job - assess them to identify if they are a true sales wolf. Ask family members and friends to share their recent positive sales experiences and then hunt those salespeople down.
Implement an "Always Be Hiring Program" - Strategic companies are always on the hunt for strong sales talent regardless of whether or not they are actually hiring officially. You cannot go broke selling at a profit. The same applies when hiring a sales wolf - you can always afford one.
Step one is to decide to hire only sales wolves and let your competitors hire the sales vampires. Right now would be a good time to develop a sales wolf recruitment strategy.