In creating a world-class sales organization, there are two key times when it is better to know then to think. The first of those two times is in the hiring process. When it comes to hiring a sales person, wouldn’t you rather know the candidate has the skills, talents, and behavior’s to be successful rather then think they do? The second time is after you hire a person and start them on what should be years of training and development. When you are training your staff, how do you know what skills, behaviors, talents, etc. need to be developed?
How can a sales manager or organization predict a salesperson’s skill level? Or, if you are a salesperson, how can you identify your potential areas of improvement?
Let’s look at the first of these situations. Most managers and companies hire in a very similar way. The get resumes, do interviews, and call references. Then a few conversations take place and the person you THINK, based on historical data, can do the job is hired. When we do this, do we actually know what motivates this person? Are we totally aware of the skills and talents they possess? The answer is no! We think we know, but in reality we do not know what we should know and that is the person we hire already has the motivation, skills, and behaviors that make someone a world-class sales person.
So how can we be sure, how can we KNOW what we need to know? The answer is developing a hiring process that identifies those behaviors, skills, talents, and motivators needed to be a world-class sales associate and allows you to create a world-class sales team. And the way to KNOW this is via a sales assessment that identifies the key areas needed to be successful. Without this process you are, at best, taking a 50/50 chance of being correct in whom you hire and how you train.
There are a multitude of skills, behaviors, knowledge and attitudes involved in any successful sales career. To know who to hire and how to improve your own sales performance requires that you periodically examine all of these aspects.
By assessing your sales effectiveness in each of the eight areas, you will gain an understanding about how you can truly become a high-performing salesperson.
- Preparing for the sale and preparing yourself
- Targeting the right market and buyers
- Connecting to the buyer
- Assessing needs and wants of the buyer
- Solving buyer’s problem and meeting their needs
- Closing the sale and gaining buyer commitment
- Reinforcing value and post sale follow-up
- Self-Assessment Becoming your own ‘sales manager’
The eight competencies listed above together gives you a Sales IQ, which is your current selling effectiveness.
Each individual can then see based in the eight competencies about if they are Highly Developed, Advanced Development, Early Development or Needs Development. Most salespeople don’t take the time to understand how they can improve their own sales performance.
As with any profession, selling has a body of knowledge related to successful execution. An objective analysis of your individual sales team or you as a sales professional can help you greatly increase the bottom line.