Hiring the right sales rep can be difficult. The selection process is costly and time-consuming. Selecting the wrong person to add to your team is even more expensive, by the time you consider the cost of compensation, recruitment costs, and training expenses. After you’ve invested 3-4 months to find the “right” candidate, onboarding and sales coaching begins. And, if your new hire doesn’t work out, you end up starting the process all over again! According to CSO Insights, 47% of companies say it takes 10 or more months for new sales people to become fully productive and 67% said it took 7 months or more. Want to estimate ramp time for your business? We talk more about that here.
There’s often limited availability of top-performing, seasoned salespeople looking to make a change. What remains are inexperienced (or less experienced) options. This means you’ll need to do more training and then coaching so your new rep will be able to hit quota. For a smooth onboarding process, you’ll want to be sure that the person you choose to hire is coachable. Merriam-Webster defines coachable as, “capable of being easily taught and trained to do something better.” Let’s take a look at how to identify the most coachable sales reps.
Truly open to feedback – Sales reps who don’t accept feedback are never going to reach their potential. Their stubbornness can hold back your entire team and negatively impact their performance.
Excellent listener – Your new team member needs to be able to listen carefully so they are able to understand and apply the coaching that they receive.
Possess a willingness to learn – If your new hire isn’t willing to learn, and they’re stuck in their old ways of doing things, then they won’t be teachable. So, make sure that they have the desire to learn and are able to adapt to suggested changes.
Committed to making time to improve their skills – It usually takes time and repetition to change and improve performance. If your new sales person isn’t willing to put in the time to learn and practice new skills they aren’t truly coachable.
During the interview process there are certain things that you can do to determine if you have a coachable potential team member in front of you.
Looking for these attributes, and following this process, will increase the odds of selecting a coachable new hire. This can make a huge difference in how quickly they ramp to optimum performance, which can have a positive impact on your bottom line.