As a sales leader have you ever stopped to ask yourself the following question; why do I want to hire the best talent available? The easy answer to this question is that we want to hire the most talented salespeople because naturally they will help us drive more sales, which is true, but I have been listening closely to sales leaders and many of them seem to have another motivating factor at play for wanting to hire top performers. What is that reason? Well, simply put they feel as though if they hire right talent they will not have to spend as much time coaching these individuals because they will be more self-directed and hopefully will already possess the necessary sales skills to be successful and productive. It seems to be a pretty harmless desire on the surface, wanting to hire sales people who need less coaching, but I would contend that it is a sales manager’s job to be a great coach, thus spending the preponderance of their time indulged in coaching related activities should be something they are embracing not shying away from. And if you don’t want to spend more time coaching the “A” players then why do you want to be a coach in the first place? Not only that, research has also proven that when effective coaching is given to an “A” talent versus a “C” talent – the time spent coaching the “A” talent will yield more results and performance toward the bottom line.
I can certainly understand why sales manager’s pine for more talent. In any business setting, just like in athletics, the more talented players you have the higher your performance ceiling increases. However, even the top tier talent desires effective coaching from their leadership. EcSELL Institute research shows that the two most motivating factors for sales people are their manager’s ability to 1) Coach and 2) Help them progress towards their career goals and objectives. So the thought process should not be let’s hire the top talent so we can spend less time coaching them – it should be the exact opposite. The thought process should be let’s hire the top talent available because that way our coaching efforts will drive even more performance and we will not spend exhausting hours trying to coach average talent and achieving only average results – thus giving us a jaded view on the pleasure of spending time in coaching related activities.