Forums » The Round Table: Brainstorming & Problem-solving

Hiring sales representatives-creating a process

    • 1 posts
    August 26, 2016 4:05 AM PDT

    Hi Everyone, I am looking for a bit of advice for my magazine and talk radio show, I have been looking for a sales representative for quite some time to sell ad space for both, since its the same type of platform.  I'd love any feedback you can share with me, as we've found it challenging finding someone that would be a good fit. 

    • 167 posts
    August 28, 2016 8:35 AM PDT

    Locating much less actually interviewing people for sales positions is so difficult. Under-30's would rather work McDonald's part-time. College seniors at job fairs actually back away when you say you're there to talk about a job in sales. I thought this was just the media industry for awhile but retailers and B2B we call on are asking us for leads all the time and cannot fill openings, expand hours or locations, are tired of training people who then leave despite raises. 

    The Small Business Association of Michigan had an interesting series of articles and video author interviews with an expert in the HR field. The upshot is that today you are highly unlikely to find candidates much less a qualified hiree thru traditional means like newspaper and online help wanted.

    The #1 way to find a sales person now, per this presentation, is referrals. The hard thing is the referrals can come from any direction - a receptionist at a business with a nephew unhappy with his job, an actual sales person in a local business with a friend... anything. So you have to always be talking and asking about possibilities.

    The other consideration is what the qualifications are for the job you want to fill. It's no longer about sales experience, past training or what recruiters call 'skill sets'. So when you look for or interview candidates you need instead to look for qualities - with the idea that you can hone the qualities into great sales technique. Is this person ambitious? Does he/she feel a need to succeed, to convince others of his viewpojnt? That kind of thing.

    I'm working on this, too. It's a different approach than i'm used to.