Of course this problem is getting worse, there are charlatans everywhere and usually their best sales is to employers.

Hiring the wrong sales leader is the single easiest bad decision you can make. Regardless of whether you are looking to hire a Sales Manager, Director of Sales, VP of Sales, CRO, CSO, etc. Don’t matter if it’s 100% commission, $80k base, $400k Base, $350k OTE, 7 figure comp package, you will be wildly surprised at the lack of talent on the market. When we say lack of talent, we mean actual ability to do the job. Most will impress you during the interview process, but their ability to deliver results is astonishing. A study by SalesHacker revealed that in 2018 average sales leader tenure had dropped to 19 months, compared to 26 months in 2010. That’s enough time ramp, miss targets, be put on a PIP, miss the PIP and then the awkward dance between you, HR and the sales leader for you to get them gone with minimal collateral damage.

Just in case you don’t know about turnover costs, the average senior sales leader has about $97k in turnover costs. From, recruitment, severance, time-cost and opportunity costs. So you better get it right.

In a study by Vantage Point Performance, they found that the cost of a bad sales manager on average is $3.5M in out of pocket cash, opportunity cost, team performance, and team morale/turnover.

 


Point 1

Previous “success” isn’t a great determinant.

Get the right leader for where you are today, that can get you to where you want to be tomorrow.

Previous “success” isn’t a great determinant.

There are many factors why people are successful, so drill down into exactly what they did and what marketing, market forces, VC money + connections.

Point 2

 It doesn’t pay to be an optimist here.

Look for the flaws or potential weaknesses to make a safer hire.

You better know what they can’t do. Nobody can do everything, or at least not well and definitely not quickly.

Isolate what they are good at by finding out what they are bad at. You should have a laundry list of what they can’t do, so you have a known talent coming in and you can surround them with all the right pieces.

Point 3

Define the strategy for the leader’s success before you start looking.

Otherwise it will be the blind leading the blind. Know what you are hiring them to do, make sure they can do it, test them, and then let them create their ramp, before you hire them.

That way there is ownership and accountability over the initial steps. If they set a ramp that’s too slow, don’t hire them. If they create one that’s too ambitious and not realistic, that shows they don’t have experience. Also, get them to define what parameters they are basing this off, so if they are off track, they don’t find some wiggle room or excuse when the rubber meets the road.

Conclusion

Hiring a bad sales leader is easy, that’s why everyone does it.

Are you ready?

We only work with the most determined and passionate leaders. If you want to close more deals, multiply your revenue, and scale your business, we’re ready to take action.