When hiring for a position as critical as sales, I’m always surprised that companies don’t take the time to test candidates better than they do.
I recognize that the HR department is ill equipped to test salespeople beyond the standard personality or temperament assessment but, even then, most seem loath to use these tools. It’s as though they are showing a weakness if they have to use a tool to help with the hiring process. And that they are supposed to be able to divine the keepers from the ones they should be throwing back.
I don’t expect HR people to be able to properly assess a salesperson’s selling ability beyond the knowledge level. Like other professions, it generally takes-one-to-know-one in order to properly assess a sales candidate.
Even then, sales managers feel they have an innate ability to select winners. In actual fact, tossing a coin will often give them the same results as an interview. I wrote about this in my article “Luck is Not a Hiring Tool”.
Somewhere along the line you should do some semi-formal testing. I’ll tell you what those two critical tests are in my next post. Watch for it, you don’t want to miss this important information.