Whether you are hiring new sales reps or trying to gauge the potential performance of existing ones the key lies in benchmarking the position.
But are you using the right benchmark?
Some managers might benchmark top performers in the position, hoping to hire a “clone” or coach everyone to that level. But when you benchmark the top performers of a C team, you get a C benchmark. Other managers benchmark the ideal candidate, looking to hire the perfect salesperson. Like the goal of finding the perfect spouse, the goal of finding the perfect salesperson is an unrealistic dream.To get a true benchmark, you must know what skills, talents, behaviors, motivations and attitudes the job requires. You must let the job talk and determine the Key Accountabilities of the job.
Why does the job exist?
What knowledge is needed?
What couldn’t be done without it?
With a job benchmarking process, you can determine what behaviors, motivators and personal skills are required by the job’s key accountabilities. The job benchmark then allows you to accurately match talent to the position and assess current performers. When sales reps match the behavioral requirements of the job, have the motivation for success and can provide the right soft skills superior sales performance is greatly increased.
A study by IHRIM and Knowledge Infusion found that over 82% of organizations cite Succession Planning as a growing concern of the future. Now they are looking at middle management and key talent in addition to top level executives.