Sales jobs can be tricky. Hiring the right person might seem at first glance like an easy thing to do, but it can be deceptively difficult. The initial interview with your candidate might give you the impression that she is outgoing and extremely congenial., and that she may be. But how does she handle rejection? Can she close the deal at the end of the day? How can you know?
One place you might turn to as you cast out your net for the best sales people is a sales headhunter. These people are sales recruiters and know what it takes to find just the right person for the job. A sales career doesn’t happen overnight. A sales person worth his salt will have a track record of closing deals in whatever field he finds himself.
If you break things down to their core, selling is really a social business. When you find someone who not only projects confidence and skill to you in an interview but a solid social framework , that is the person you want to hire. Take her around to meet your other employees. Does she engage them in a confident and friendly manner? Does she start conversations and listen when others speak to her? That’s what draws customers in. That is what helps to close deals.
When you meet in person with your candidate, how is his handshake? That might seem a bit odd but a handshake and a confident smile go a really long way when a sales person does his best work. Sales jobs are about much more than simply knowing the product. A solid salesperson can tell straight away what a customer wants almost before they do. He can pick up on subtle things that customers don’t even know they are doing.
It should go without saying that a good sales person will possess strong written and verbal communication skills. Does your candidate possess more, though? She should be able to read people in a subtle yet effective way. She should possess a skill that enables her to get in rapport with a customer right off the bat. Rapport is the best way to establish trust, and trust is essential when trying to close a deal.
It is also true that sales jobs require closers. If one is an effective sales person, he is able to close a deal when it is time. Knowing when it’s time to close is part of that skill set. After all, what does it matter if a sales person is friendly with a customer and has a wonderful rapport with them if the deal doesn’t get closed in the end?
If you are in the business of sales and it is your responsibility to hire your sales team, focus on more than just the resume and cover letter. Spend time in the interview getting to know the real person, not the one acting like the model employee. Take them around the office and see how they perform. If you like what you see and get a strong vibe, let the selling begin.