Automotive Sales Training - 10 Tips for Recruiting Sales People Successfully

Sales people provide life for all companies. If everything starts with sales people, it only makes sense to make sure that you are recruiting the best potential sales people


Tip 1: Recruit from want, not need. Make recruiting an everyday activity, don’t wait until you need it.


Tip 2: Have a strategy to recruit people all the time. To orchestrate a successful ongoing recruiting program you must first have a game-plan. Plan and develop a flow chart of your desired results. Write down the obvious. You must know why you are looking to create a recruiting strategy. “When the why gets strong, the how gets easy.”


Tip 3: Know who is in charge of recruiting and his/her qualifications. People must be educated on creating and orchestrating a strategy that works. Don’t leave the who and how to chance.


Tip 4: Newspaper ads – the Sunday paper is full of ads for sales people. If you plan on using help wanted ads as part of your recruiting, you must write the ad with the mindset of the good sales person you are looking to recruit. Use two age-old formulas: WIIFM – “What’s in it for me?” and AIDA – “Attention, interest, desire and action” when creating your ads.


Tip 5: Try using several avenues to recruit such as full color newspaper inserts, business journal classifieds, a banner ad on your web site, local colleges, Internet job postings, radio ads, military bases, job fairs and employee referral program. Never leave the vitality of your company to just one avenue of marketing. You must build a marketing web that has many marketing branches to attract good people.


Tip 6: Have an “ideal employee” profile. Know who you are looking for before you find them. When you’ve developed a precise guideline of what the perfect recruit looks like, you can begin your process with that in mind and then remove the emotions involved in interviewing.


Tip 7: Payment plans satisfy base-level needs of the potential recruit. Pay all recruits during training and guarantee them a living wage during their learning curve. Many potentially good sales people are not given the chance to ever enter the business. Lower the barriers of entry in order to find the best people.


Tip 8: Have at least 50 written interview questions. Don’t you show a sales person how to profile customers? Preparation is key to a good interview. Be ready with sub questions to the interviewee’s answers that allow him or her to elaborate and communicate in detail. A good interview will follow the 80/20-rule and allow the recruit to speak 80% of the time.


Tip 9: Test and profile a potential sales person. Anyone who has interviewed people has come across a great interview, horrible employee. A good recruiting strategy must utilize many tools to reduce the emotion and help to make a more logical and quantitative selection. There are many tools today that can be used to gauge the personality, sales aptitude, emotional IQ, intelligence and just about anything else you want to know about a possible future employee


Tip 10: Don’t hire people based only upon resumes. If you want to hire good sales people, recruit and hire based on talent and attitude and teach them the necessary skills.


Recruiting and hiring effectively is a continuous process that is both part science and being creative. Having a consistent plan will make your recruiting a success.


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Comment by Mark Tewart on March 12, 2013 at 9:43am

Thanks for the comment Ian. I agree with your comments. I encourage managers to have a sales training meeting where they ask their salespeople to give them the last customer scenario that they did not sell. I ask them to list every detail of the interaction with the customer. I have them write down everything from the meet and greet to the close, objections and final outcome on a board. We then open the discussion to all salespeople to think of what else could be done or could have been done. All thoughts and ideas are welcome and none are judged as wrong or ineffective. The idea is to get the salespeople to discuss what they actually did and then to think critically about that interaction as well as the other salespeople. It is amazing the different ideas you get and how it begins to teach salespeople real world scenarios and creative critical thinking skills that they can use on an ongoing basis. Salespeople begin to assimilate different ideas and techniques sometimes without even realizing they are doing it. Thanks again for the good tip.

Comment by Ian Woodward on March 12, 2013 at 7:39am

Re Tip 8 - I would also add the following thought.  We need to get the answers to questions that establish how sales people actually work, not what they think we want to hear or what they can recall from their last training course.  One of my favourite techniques is to get a sales executive to tell me about the last car they sold.  What was the car, tell me about the customer, why was that the car for them, how did you deliver the figures, how did you handle his trade in objection etc....  This will show you what the sales executive actually does, not he thinks he should do!  The truth is out there, you just gotta find it!

Comment by Mark Tewart on March 8, 2013 at 1:16am

Thanks Bobby, I appreciate the kind words. Keep up the good work.

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