How To Hire Sales Stars Every Time Webcast 01 21 10

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So how can you be sure these people CAN and WILL sell? Either you have to \’wing it\’, learn a system, or develop your own. …

So how can you be sure these people CAN and WILL sell? Either you have to \’wing it\’, learn a system, or develop your own.

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  • Good morning everybody. My name is Scott Smeester and I’ll be showing you Hiring Sales Stars Every Time. This webcast takes about 20 minutes and I’ll take questions at the end. Let’s get started … The most important thing to understand is that the process of hiring somebody IS a sales situation, and you’re putting yourself in a situation to be sold a crappy product because you’re interviewing people who have been taught all the tricks. If you don’t know how to buy it right, you could make a big mistake. It is very difficult, if not a total guessing game, to qualify a candidate by how great a persons resumes looks or how well a they interview. What is critical to know is whether the sales candidate really has the skills necessary so they CAN sell for you, and the motivation so they WILL sell for YOU. If you knew they couldn’t sell, would you hire them anyway? Another way to put it is “If you knew you could hire a sales star every time, how would it change your business?" I had a company in the late 1990’s through the early part of this decade. I made a lot of hiring mistakes when it came to salespeople because I didn’t know what I was doing. Most of the time: salespeople weren’t closing – spent a lot of time doing proposals, not enough qualifying not prospecting enough to keep their pipeline full selling at low margins – always asking me to discount not fun to manage: excuses, etc. A mistake I couldn’t recover from and I went through a bankruptcy. I don’t blame the salespeople. I blame me for not having a system I could count on. I hope to help you avoid mistakes and teach you how to “buy” (er… hire) a salesperson correctly.
  • What I’ve learned is that it is entirely possible to implement a system that: removes the guesswork of hiring a salesperson so it’s no longer a matter of luck whether you end up hiring a producer or not saves time and money from the grueling process of reviewing resumes and doing interviews with candidates that never should have been there in the first place increases confidence – both yours and ultimately your new hire. This is important because what kind of effect does it have on a person when you just know that they’re going to perform well for you? Doesn’t it just seem to help the whole situation? eliminates costly hiring mistakes attracts better candidates from the beginning is reliable and repeatable – giving you the ability to know that whatever business you want to grow, you can count on the ability to put a high caliber sales team in place optimizes chances of success – often giving you a competitive advantage reduces costly turnover creates an environment of success
  • Hiring sales people can be very risky and the costs of hiring a non-producing salesperson can be devastating. Have you ever calculated how much it costs to have non-producers on staff? How much does it cost to review resumes, interview candidates, and train and manage and motivate salespeople? How much have you spent on training, expenses and salary? If you go to my website, under my ugly mug shot you’ll see the section called “Recommended”. The first link is “Cost Benchmark Worksheet for Sales Recruiting” and you can download it and do it at your convenience. For the purposes of this demonstration, I’m going to show you what it cost me to “wing it” and go with my gut feelings for hiring sales people in my web development company.
  • “A” is the number of salespeople I had
  • “H” is how you value your time ($ per hour): $100/hr “D” is the number of salespeople that have left or have been let go in the past five years: 5
  • Be sure to mark the total hard costs as “U”
  • “I” is the cost of interviewing – for me it was $5000 “L” is the cost of payroll – for me it was $250,000 “0” is the cost of training – for me it was $25,000 “U” is the hard costs – I came up with $26,000 My total costs for going through that pain was $306,000!!! No wonder I couldn’t recover! In addition to the direct costs, there are intangible costs - negative effect on your brand - demotivating to other salespeople and staff - your own self esteem If you go through this on your own, no matter what your final costs are, don’t feel bad. It is very common. Download and complete “Cost Benchmark Worksheet for Sales Recruiting”. Find it at So what did I did wrong? Let’s take a look…
  • The typical process for recruiting salespeople, one that I used, simply did not reduce the odds of hiring a dud and I take responsibility for that. Nothing in my process that really helped me answer the question: - do they have the skills so they CAN sell - drive and motivation so they WILL sell I posted the job. Reviewed tons of resumes Interviewed a minimum of 6 to 8 people, if not more Spent money on personality tests Hired based on how I felt about the candidate It is said that 90% of salespeople’s best sale is getting the job they currently have Sales recruiting is different. Instead of trying to find the best, you try to eliminate the worst. What’s left is what you have to work with. If you can’t do something that determines the riff-raff at the very beginning, before you even talk to them, the chances of getting sold by a dud go up. So what’s the process?...
  • Weed Out Recruiting is a simple 5 step process that is very powerful in eliminating candidates who CAN’T and WON’T sell, greatly increasing your odds of providing you with candidates who CAN and WILL sell for you. As mentioned, my clients see an increase of success from about 25% to over a 95% success rate. 1. Profile position 2. Create ad that attracts and screens 3. Implement effective pre-screening methods - Determine trainability of candidates - Know the weaknesses that need managing 4. Phone screening 5. Implement powerful interview process
  • Properly profiling your position is very important to the whole process. It comes in to play - for creating an affective ad - assessing candidates and with - phone screening. I have a standard form I use - 20+ questions such as: - who the target prospect is (CEO, husband/wife, technical user, etc.), - what the expected duties are (heavy prospecting, taking orders, etc.) - what the sales cycle is (one call, 2 years) - kind of product/service being sold The top five helps in writing the ad…
  • An effective ad is one that attracts quality candidates while at the same time, weeds out candidates that won’t measure up. It also comes into play in the phone screen process. Won’t discuss how to create a great headline or company description - there are better people who can do that. Let’s concentrate on how to weed out duds. What you do want to do is take the 5 most important questions and other important information from the profile and use it in the ad - to clearly describe what the job is about and - what the salesperson will be expected to do - who they sell to - how much should they have made in previous sales positions This ad will turn away people we don’t want to waste time with How many people do you think that has an aversion to cold calling, or hasn’t made $100,000 in the past, would apply to this ad? You see, we just weeded out some duds. Awesome! For people who reply to the ad, I move them to the next weed out step…
  • Everybody who replies to the job ad is sent to take a pretty grueling online assessment - designed and scored appropriately from the profile created in the first step. Now I realize there are a ton of different types of assessments and tests on the market. - psychological, - personality, - behavioral styles, - aptitude… you name it. I’m sure they have their place, but when it comes to sales, I just want to know whether or not a candidate can sell or not - do they possess the right mental programming that drives them toward success (i.e. motivation)? - do they not have the baggage of negative scripts that prevents salespeople from closing deals? I use only sales skill and motivation specific pre-hire screens that determines if the candidates are wired for success by determining their desire, their commitment, their outlook, as well as their responsibility. This is very critical and I’ve used a lot, so if you need some recommendations, I’d be happy to help. I addition to understanding the candidates motivation, you need to determine if the candidate in question has negative scripts that are going to get in the way. Did you know that there is a direct correlation between how people buy and how they sell? In other words, do you want a salesperson who lets their prospects shop the competition? The assessments I use determines if they have a bad buy cycle and if it will keep them from achieving results from the profile created. Does the person has a high need for approval? If they have to be liked, it’s gonna be hard for them to ask prospects tough questions or to ask for a decision. These 5 major weaknesses can kill a salespersons productivity. In the end, I’m able to ask “Is this candidate hirable – yes or no?” very powerful…
  • Here is a screen shot of the summary page from a sample assessment. If you can see the bottom line, it clearly shows that this candidate is not recommended for hiring. In my process, this candidate wouldn’t make it to the next step. Hmm, that was easy. Full disclosure, I resell this company’s pre-hire screen assessments. They also have sales team and management assessments. If it’s something you’d like more information about, I’d be happy to help you.
  • Next I set up 10 minute phone interviews. I ask the candidate if they have the ad in front of them that they replied to. They typically don’t so I read it to them I work backwards through the ad. - “Joe, tell me when you last made $100,000 in a year. What did you do?”. - “What were you selling when you were selling to CEO’s of $20 million companies?” You go through the whole ad. The phone screen allows you to make sure they have good phone skills such as bonding/rapport, warmth presence. It also allows to check for the necessary experience. I wrap up by thanking them and telling them that if they make it they’ll be contacted and if not, good luck and I go to hang up. If they say “can I just ask one more question?”, which I hope they do. Keeping the conversation going is a good skill and one that I reward for.
  • I use a standard score sheet for the interview. What’s your first impression? Did they look you in the eye? Standard stuff. By the way, if you’d like any of the forms I use that you’ve see here, just contact me. I’d be happy to share what I have.
  • There are two main goals of the interview. This step tests how the candidate handles pressure, something I want my salespeople to be able to handle. I give them a page from the assessment and give them a few minutes to review. They typically get pretty nervous reading about their weaknesses. I then proceed to ask them to help me understand why each of the listed weaknesses won’t cause problems with this candidate. It says here Joe, that… By now, you probably have a good candidate. The second goal is to close the deal…
  • I leave them alone with a page of paper that gives them the opportunity to create their own position. I ask them what they expect from the company. Then tell me what they’ll give in return. We review it together and as long as what they put is not out of line - for instance, “I’ll show up” in return for a $100,000 salary – then I ask them if the job was offered right now would they take it. Now I’m not necessary offering the job. I’m just closing the deal, in addition to seeing how they make a decision. From there you will be able to know who to hire and make an offer. You can see this is a extensive recruiting process designed to be easy on you. By the time you spend any time with a candidate, they’ll be somebody worthy of your time. One of the best parts of this process is that real salespeople really become really attracted to your company because they have just gone through a rigorous recruiting process. It tells them that you are serious about you and their success.
  • So you can see that at this point, you’ve pretty much hired a sales star which is the first part of the process. The next step, one that I’m creating a new webcast for, is called “on-boarding” – or the process of getting the salesperson going with the proper behavior plan to establish the proper momentum that assures their success. To ensure that you are notified of this webcast, please go to my website and sign up for the newsletter. Another way to be sure is to follow me on Twitter. My account is just “scottsmeester”. In addition, I’m putting together other webcasts for sustainable sales and marketing systems so stay tuned. I’m going to take some questions now, so if you have any, please write them now. <<< If no questions… >>> Don’t recruiters help? I appreciate your participation in this webcast. Below is my contact information if there is anything I can do to help you. Now before you go, I’d really appreciate it if you’d rate and give some feedback on this presentation. Happy recruiting!


  • 1. If you knew you could not fail, how many salespeople would you hire? Scott Smeester 303.893.6628
  • 2.
    • Learn a System That:
    • Removes the guesswork
    • Saves time and money
    • Increases confidence
    • Eliminates hiring mistakes
    • Attracts better candidates
    • Is reliable and repeatable
    • Optimizes chances of success
    • Reduces turnover
    • Creates environment of success
    Scott Smeester 303.893.6628
  • 3.
    • Time
      • Reviewing resumes
      • Interviewing
      • Training
      • Managing
    • Money
      • Training
      • Expenses – leads, phone, etc.
      • Lost salary
    • Intangible
    Scott Smeester 303.893.6628
  • 4.
    • A. Number of that didn’t work out: 5 salespeople
    • B. Approximate number of people interviewed: 10 interviews
    • C. Average time of interviews (hrs): 1 hour
    • D. Value of my time ($ per hour): $100/hour
    • E. Cost of Interviewing = A * B * C * D = $5000
    Scott Smeester 303.893.6628
  • 5.
    • F. Average monthly base salary you pay salespeople: $5000
    • G. Average number of months of employment of salespeople no longer with company: 10 months
    • H. Cost of Payroll = A * F * G = $250,000
    Scott Smeester 303.893.6628
  • 6.
    • M. Hours of personal time invested in training, managing and coaching one salesperson: min. 40 hours
    • N. Average cost of outside training per salesperson: $1000
    • O. Cost of Training = (M * H * A) + (N * A) = $25,000
    Scott Smeester 303.893.6628
  • 7.
    • P. Recruiter fees paid: $20,000
    • Q. Cost of leads: $5000
    • R. Cost of phones bills and/or contact lists: $1000
    • S. Advances and/or commissions paid in advance on non-collected accounts: ??
    • T. Cost of travel and /or reimbursed expenses: ??
    • U. Hard Costs = P + Q + R + S + T = $26,000
    Scott Smeester 303.893.6628
  • 8.
    • TOTAL COST = I + L + O + U
    • $306,000
    Scott Smeester 303.893.6628 Download: Cost Benchmark Worksheet for Sales Recruiting
  • 9. Scott Smeester 303.893.6628 Resumes Interview 1 Interview 2 Personality Test Hire based on feeling New hire to the fire
  • 10.
    • Eliminate candidates that CAN’T
    • and WON’T Sell…
    • Profile position
    • Create effective ad
    • Assess candidates *
    • Phone screening
    • Powerful interview process
    Scott Smeester 303.893.6628
  • 11. Scott Smeester 303.893.6628
  • 12. Scott Smeester 303.893.6628
  • 13.
    • Critical Elements of Success
      • Desire
      • Commitment
      • Outlook
      • Responsibility
    Scott Smeester 303.893.6628
    • 5 Major Weaknesses
      • Buy cycle
      • Need for Approval
      • Emotions
      • Money tolerance
      • Record collection
    Is this candidate hirable - YES or NO?!?
  • 14. Scott Smeester 303.893.6628
  • 15. Scott Smeester 303.893.6628
  • 16. Scott Smeester 303.893.6628
  • 17. Scott Smeester 303.893.6628
  • 18. Scott Smeester 303.893.6628
  • 19.
    • Forms seen on this webcast
    • Questions
    • Pre-hire Screen Assessments
    • Sustainable Sales and Marketing Systems
      • Hiring unbeatable sales teams
      • Major account development
      • Online marketing and sales
      • Strategic Planning
    Scott Smeester 303-893-6628 Email: [email_address] Website: