HOW TO IDENTIFY AND NURTURE TALENT
Don’t you wish hiring talent could be more like the reality television show The Voice? Potential candidates would appear before a panel of judges, and a few would advance to the next round of the interview process based on the audition. Next, you spend a few weeks coaching and developing the best candidates to make them even better.
DRIVE PERFORMANCE AND REVENUE IN YOUR ORGANISATION
Can you imagine hiring sales and service professionals in this manner? Not only would it be a compelling show, but new sales professionals would hit the ground running and would be at full productivity in no time.
Understanding how to identify and nurture talent is vital to any successful sales and service organisation, and it’s one of the best ways to increase performance and drive revenue. So, what if I told you finding talented sales professionals could be just as easy without all the pageantry of a television production?
YOU JUST CAN’T TEACH TALENT
Talent is reoccurring patterns of thought, feeling, and behaviour, and is an aspect of a person’s makeup that you can’t just learn. It’s something we have that is an innate and unique to
the individual. These aptitudes cannot be created, quantified, or accounted for by training or
experience. People either have a certain trait or they don’t.
Many sales organisations approach talent all wrong. Typical interviews focus on job fit, skills, competencies, and experience. While it is vital to uncover these qualities during the interview process, it’s not the best way to find top talent. Sales leaders need to focus on identifying candidates’ innate traits – the things they naturally excel at – that will help them succeed in their sales career.
Organisations that don’t focus on candidates’ inherent strengths are missing a big opportunity.
Individuals are unique, so it makes sense that we all have unique gifts. Here’s what I mean: Adam AshleyCooper is one of the best rugby players in the world because he has specific talents that enable him to excel on the pitch. But those skills wouldn’t necessarily make him a top seller or service provider.
UNDERSTAND YOUR PERFORMANCE OUTLIERS
So, how can you find top sellers? First, you need to study your high performers, figure out what drives them, and find out the characteristics they all share. Then, you adjust your recruiting efforts to look for more salespeople with the same talents and traits.
Once you find out what makes your top sellers – or outliers as they are known – great, you add skill development and a supportive culture (training) along with coaching, and you’re well on your way to sustainable high performance.
Finding great talent starts with studying your outliers to determine the traits they possess that drive high performance in your unique work environment and culture.
When you have discovered the traits that lead to success, you can measure and hire for them. You do this by asking candidates specific questions to see if they possess these high-performing traits. The key is to ask the right questions.
When you unlock the keys to identifying top talent, it can be magical for your organisation. Research from CSO Insights revealed enormous benefits when you hire the right people for the right position and put them in a nurturing culture. The research showed your people would:
WHAT DOES THIS LOOK LIKE IN PRACTICE?
Recently, we worked with a Global Fortune 100 company study their high performers and determine some key traits they should look for in potential candidates for sales positions. We started by measuring everyone on their sales team so we could identify the positive sales-related traits each of them possessed. We discovered members of their sales team fell into three buckets:
1. Those with all of the positive traits;
2. Those with some of the traits; and 3. Those with none of the traits. Next, we studied the revenue generated against the quota for each group. To no one’s surprise, the group that possessed all of the positives traits we identified were two times more successful than those with only some of the positive traits, and three times more successful than those with none.
WHAT ARE MY NEXT STEPS?
To find top Sales talent there are three core ideas to remember: 1. Find and study your outliers 2. Adjust your hiring approach to target the traits and talents of your top performers
3. Mentor and nurture these traits in your organisation
We know this approach delivers results, but how can you be sure you’ve identified the right traits? How can you know if you’re tracking the right metrics to find the outliers? And how will you adapt your culture and work environment to foster these traits?
For the last 7 years, Miller Heiman Group has been running our national Sales and Service Summit in Sydney where we explore these ideas with hundreds of Australia and New Zealand’s high performance organisations. The Summit attracts business leaders in Sales, Service, Marketing, Operations, Capability, Enablement, Transformation, HR and Learning & Development.
If you want to start identifying, acquiring, and nurturing top talents to sell more and service better, register for our 2017 Sales & Service Summit at www.millerheimangroup.com.au/ elevate2017.
If you can’t wait until May 25th to discover how best to assess your sales and service team, contact Ty Southern of Miller Heiman Group on +61 400 649 641 or email Ty.Southern@millerheimangroup.
com for a discussion on how you can select and grow the right talent to elevate your sales and service performance.