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Tips Of Hiring A Salesperson?

 
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Old 05-06-2007, 01:02 AM   #1
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Tips Of Hiring A Salesperson?


We are considering hiring a salesperson. I have been reading the previous posts on how to pay the comissions rates and such. Does anyone have any tips on hiring a successful salesperson? What requirements should be needed? What incentives you would recommend? This is all new to me, I ran my fathers business for years and never had to have a salesperson as all of his work was from referrals and word of mouth, so now that we are in a new state and new company it is harder for me to adjust to getting the leads and selling the jobs. Thanks for any advice at all.
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Old 05-06-2007, 06:14 AM   #2
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Re: Tips Of Hiring A Salesperson?


If I was to hire another salesperson, I'd want someone knowledgeable in the field I'm in. Have some type of related experience.
I don't want a car salesman or a telemarketer.
Although I might choose a car salesman if they are a champion closer.
Neat, clean, and professional in appearance.
Speaks well. Talks with their eyes.

If they can show some sort of sales record that tracks their company's increase in numbers, that's a big plus.

Good references

If they can sell me.

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Old 05-08-2007, 01:52 PM   #3
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Re: Tips Of Hiring A Salesperson?


The last salesjob I had... I came in and showed them my W-2 - that was my resume

I've always liked to discuss numbers with a salesperson. Obviously, you have to be quick with numbers in your head, but you can often catch an applicant lying about their numbers by asking enough questions.

Here's another little thing I always liked to do when hiring salepeople - I would ask them if they would like a drink. Hopefully they always say yes. The important part is that.. I do not get it for them and move on to somethign else. The top two salepeople I have ever worked with both asked me for the drink again after we had moved on.
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Old 05-08-2007, 09:05 PM   #4
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Re: Tips Of Hiring A Salesperson?


I once watched a pool salesman catch a major reaming from the company owner...
salesman was proud of himself for closing 2 deals by throwing in waterfalls & plaster upgrade...

the boss a very loud tough guy... "you didn't sell two pools, you were out spending my money!!! your gone!!" (though F was used between every word)

that was a great sales lesson... make it clear that giveways/discounts have the same bottom line impact, as a purchase w/o gaining an asset
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Old 05-08-2007, 10:33 PM   #5
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Re: Tips Of Hiring A Salesperson?


The type of salesperson and traits required varies by the targeted market. A salesperson accustomed to selling to architects and (commercial) owners will not do well selling to homeowners, for instance. First you have to define your market, then you have to determine what is really germane to their job. Is it closing, no matter what? Is it product knowledge? Is it relationship sales?

Once you have determined what type of sales you need, you can focus on salespersons with the traits you require. Numbers are important, unless you are willing to tiddy-feed a rookie and teach them your way, provided those numbers were accomplished in your specific industry. The old saw about a real salesperson being able to sell anything to anyone is not true for most segments of the construction industry.
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Old 05-09-2007, 09:52 AM   #6
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Re: Tips Of Hiring A Salesperson?


a good salesman makes a relationship
then closes the deal

(you can do this all in a day by the way)
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Old 05-09-2007, 08:02 PM   #7
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Re: Tips Of Hiring A Salesperson?


Some people can do it in five minutes, but you won't be interviewing them for a sales job in construction.
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Old 05-09-2007, 09:51 PM   #8
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Re: Tips Of Hiring A Salesperson?


This is a good topic./... I'm going to post a new thread related to this...
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Old 06-22-2007, 08:38 AM   #9
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Re: Tips Of Hiring A Salesperson?


Let me ask you; have you considered hiring a women?

Advantage?

Less intimidation
Better Bonding with HO
Avoiding control situations ie. less confrontation

If you consider this option make sure she is competitive and self driven. College Athlete type.


Who would you ask for an opinion on how a project should look? Normally the wife decides how it will look in the end.... She looks at it all the time. Women can create this image and sell experience and service better than men can. And stats on HO purchases state that women make 80% of the overall buying decision. The Husband is the protector and aggressor at the table.... But he is a pawn with the wife is pulling the strings. Sad but true! LOL!
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Old 06-22-2007, 03:18 PM   #10
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Re: Tips Of Hiring A Salesperson?


Quote:
Originally Posted by roofing girl View Post
Let me ask you; have you considered hiring a women?

Advantage?

Less intimidation
Better Bonding with HO
Avoiding control situations ie. less confrontation

If you consider this option make sure she is competitive and self driven. College Athlete type.


Who would you ask for an opinion on how a project should look? Normally the wife decides how it will look in the end.... She looks at it all the time. Women can create this image and sell experience and service better than men can. And stats on HO purchases state that women make 80% of the overall buying decision. The Husband is the protector and aggressor at the table.... But he is a pawn with the wife is pulling the strings. Sad but true! LOL!
It sounds good on paper but women can not close any better than a man.
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Old 06-22-2007, 08:07 PM   #11
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Re: Tips Of Hiring A Salesperson?


Quote:
Originally Posted by DamionR View Post
The last salesjob I had... I came in and showed them my W-2 - that was my resume

I've always liked to discuss numbers with a salesperson. Obviously, you have to be quick with numbers in your head, but you can often catch an applicant lying about their numbers by asking enough questions.

Here's another little thing I always liked to do when hiring salepeople - I would ask them if they would like a drink. Hopefully they always say yes. The important part is that.. I do not get it for them and move on to somethign else. The top two salepeople I have ever worked with both asked me for the drink again after we had moved on.
Whats the test there....is it that they were not afraid to speak up?
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Old 06-22-2007, 08:10 PM   #12
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Re: Tips Of Hiring A Salesperson?


Quote:
Originally Posted by MattCoops View Post
a good salesman makes a relationship
then closes the deal

(you can do this all in a day by the way)
sometimes..and not that often.
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Old 06-23-2007, 02:47 AM   #13
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Re: Tips Of Hiring A Salesperson?


Aha, the 'holy grail' challenge of business -- I remember attending a networking event for business people with sales volume well over $10 million a year (each). Around the table the other participants (I didn't really qualify to be there, yet) said their biggest problem is finding great salespeople. Last year, as my business virtually imploded because of some sloppy management practices (fortunately as well I made the cuts I needed to make, when I needed to), I thought all was lost. Then I fully implemented my sales hiring system and 'voila' things worked. In fact, Sunday our family is leaving for a four week overseas vacation and the business is in healthy operations.

The system described here is designed for a publishing business in Canada, but look at the basics here and I think you will be able to replicate elements for your own business.

Offer great, competitive pay. If you can't pay well, you are charging too little (I agree with guru Michael Stone on that point). We chose to offer a base salary plus commission if reps earn more than that, in line with industry norms.

Advertise widely, using free sources. In Canada, I recommend you use the Government of Canada's "Service Canada job bank". It is an electronic hiring board with the features of the commercial services, but, wow, is priced absolutely right -- zero dollars and zero cents, for unlimited listings!

Think creatively with your geography. In our case, we needed to fill a position for a publication in a major (and expensive) city. But the work can be done from home, and much work can be done by phone. So (at the advice of one of my sales reps) we looked on t he map and posted five free listings, based on cities one hour commute or less from the main city.

Use an automated screening system. We have a standard questionnaire; (we encourage sales reps to phone us, it is the one case where we want to see that kind of inititive). In our case, we ask the reps to answer a brief questionnaire; in it we make clear that we will check references and invite them to tell us about any problems ahead of time. (This usually results in a quick screen-out). Everyone except obviously unsuited candidates gets the questionnaire. Only about 15 to 25 per cent bother completing it. Duh. We simply don't waste our time reading resumes.

Next, we use a brief phone interview. We probe for problems, and see if the candidate is really interested in the job. If they are, we tell the candidates the next stages of the system.

1. An online sales apptitude test. There are several of these on the market, we use salestestonline.com; costs about $1,000 for a block of 25 tests -- and is worth every bit the $40 per test we pay. Applicants must score 7.5 or more out of 10 on prospecting and closing. Yes, the test elimintes some people who sound good in the phone interview, but it also helps us in recruiting the people we really want to hire -- after all, few things make people feel better than a great test result,

2. Offer a few days paid employment. This is our 'interview'. No phony posturing, or hours spent asking scripted questions; we give the new employee candidate some work, and expect them to do it. (The assignment depends on current operations and of course we adapt it to the prospective employee's current work schedule -- often the new candidate needs to plan a vacation day away from current employment.)

After all of these hurdles, before we prepare and offer an employment contract, we thoroughly check references.

Note the features: We don't waste time on conventional interviews and resume scanning (far too easy to fake); we rely on third-parting testing for validation at the right stage in the sales cycle, and we cast a solid (but inexpensive) net in finding our prospective candidates. I want to see 80 to 100 resumes to lead to a hire.

I've seen some other approaches that make sense but these tools saved my business. They might work for you.

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