We’ve previously written about the importance of sales and marketing teams working together. In line with these insights, we want to take a moment to explore the importance of hiring the right individuals. After all, your team is only as strong and competitive as the talents of its strongest an weakest members. In a recent survey, companies reported that 16 percent of their top marketing challenges revolved around finding the top sales individuals. To help you overcome these challenges, we have gathered together a few tips to help you build your dream sales team from scratch.
Build The Dream Sales Team Your Brand Needs
In addition to selling products or services, it is the job of a sales team to support the goals, visions, and missions of a brand. Creating your dream team should not be an item on your “fantasy business wish list,” instead, it should be a feasible task that is made easier through the following tips.
Tip #1: Analyze Current Team Members.
Before you can create a dream team, you must first take a look at the members that you already have. Analyze your top performers to determine:
- Common characteristics that lead to success.
- Cultural factors that allow certain types of individuals to succeed within your sales team.
- Issues that have led to problems within your team dynamics.
- Contributing business factors that lead to higher sales performance (for example, certain incentives that are given to and appreciated by the top sales team members).
Tip #2: Know Before You Begin Your Search.
You wouldn’t go car shopping without narrowing down your list of must-have characteristics. With this mentality in mind, you shouldn’t waste your time (and that of potential candidates) by starting your search for your dream team before you have created a list of what you need from top sales members. While the list of attributes and skillsets that you need will vary, one thing that should always be on your list is drive. Research shows that drive is one of the number one traits necessary for sales success. Drive can be found in people who are optimistic, have a need for achieving goals, and possess a competitive nature. From the moment a candidate responds to your job posting to the final interview, you should be able to confidently say, “this candidate has the drive needed to succeed in our sales department.”
Tip #3: Use A Sales Aptitude Test.
It’s one thing to hire a candidate based on their likability. It’s another to hire a candidate based on their past experience(s). However, it is an excellent choice to hire a candidate that is not only likable, has a great work history, and successfully passed a sales aptitude test. A sales aptitude test will give you the hard data needed to determine if a candidate will be successful in sales. Additionally, it will help you to reduce employee turnover, avoid poor sales results, and ensure that new hires are a great cultural fit.
Tip #4: Foster Healthy Competition.
You can hire all of the right people and still to fail to create a sales dream team if you don’t create an environment that fosters a healthy level of competition. A sales team can quickly become unmotivated if they are not managed properly and encouraged to do more than simply meet sales quotas. Through healthy competitions you can tap into the natural drive of your dream team to encourage them to continue to succeed throughout the year. A few creative competition ideas, include:
- Prize-based contests that have a specific timeline and result in bonuses, extra time off, or the latest technology gadgets.
- Team wide goals that promote competition, while simultaneously encourage team members to work together.
- Floating prizes that migrate from one team to the next; this type of competition is great for increasing sales and conversions throughout the year.
- Sales bingo is a great way to help your dream team complete the pesky tasks that often get pushed from one day to the next. This type of game is a fun way to reward your sales team on a weekly basis.
- Surprise prizes that are unexpectedly rewarded. Sometimes all your team needs to succeed is a reminder that the little things don’t go unnoticed. Whether you want to reward a sales associate who had a particularly successful week, or someone who handled a difficult client with respect and care, surprise prizes are an effective tool to keep your team in a competitive state of mind.
Tip #5: Give Your Team The Training They Need To Succeed.
Creating your brand’s dream sales team will require you to dedicate the resources needed to help your associates succeed. When you intimately know your team’s strengths and weaknesses, you can tailor your training sessions to address their specific needs. Through the latter tactic, training sessions become something that a team looks forward to, rather than a task that they might dread. Help your team fine tune their skills by giving them the training sessions and educational tools that they need to continue to succeed from quarter to quarter.
The Bottom Line: Every Business Deserves A Dream Team
Creating your sales dream team is a task that you shouldn’t put off. Through the above five tips, you can and will discover the associates that you need to help support the development of your business and brand. Once you have created your dream team, it will be your job to ensure that they are properly nurtured, managed, and encouraged to continue to succeed.