Steps to Identifying Great Sales People
Evaluating the sales team can be tricky business. What kind of information are you hoping to glean from assessing individual sales people? Most evaluation products on the market are classified as psychological, personality, behavioral or aptitude tests. While these are excellent sales management tools in understanding individuals, the results rarely predict who will actually sell for your company.
The first step to identifying great sales people is resisting the urge to benchmark that top sales position within your own company or your industry. Benchmarking is the attempt to recreate your prototypical top sales producer.
Poor outlook in a sales person, or a poor sense of personal responsibility, by themselves are not too tough to deal with. Many times, simply identifying these single "qualities" is the beginning of solving the business problems associated with these traits.
Emotional control in the sales process doesn't refer to your sales person losing their temper and blowing up at the future prospect. The type of emotional control we're talking about is made clear by the sales person's choice to stay in control of the selling process by not coughing up free expertise to unqualified sales prospects.
Perhaps the two most important strengths a sales person must have to succeed, not simply survive, are desire and commitment. Desire and commitment far outweigh the most cultivated selling skills, fancy clothes, glowing references and an impressive list of client contacts and future sales prospects.
When evaluating sales people, another of the weaknesses we must uncover is the person's ability to discuss money at the proper point in the selling process. Their inability to have open discussions about money that include whether the prospect has set aside a specific amount for your business solutions and, if there is a budget, is the sales prospect willing to part with it will kill more deals than will the merits of your products and services.
We've all heard the saying, "The easiest person to sell is a sales person". Well, it's true. At least if one is selling to a great sales person. Great sales people do not need to have all possible business information available prior to making a major purchase in their personal lives. How sales people make purchasing decisions has a 100% mirror correlation to how they are selling business for your company.
We all need some sort of approval. In life, that can come from home, work or out in the community. In selling, sales people get that approval from their clients and prospects. It comes in the form of validation from the client. If this is true, how then can a "Need for Approval" actually be the second strongest weakness a salesperson can have?