“Attracting the Best People” – Just the Tip of the Iceberg

It has been said… “a company that attracts the best people will still only be average if it fails to invest in the development of those people.”    I agree. Attracting the best people (however you define “the best”) is only the tip of the iceberg.  If they really are “the best”, that means they can probably switch companies at any time without worrying about job security.  Since that’s the case, many do switch companies until they find something that challenges them enough to keep their interest, compensates them fairly, and shows that they care about them.  In the case of sales professionals, one of the most effective things a company can do to boost retention and productivity is to provide ongoing training and sales education.  Most companies have an existing sales training program, but many of these programs focus more on what I call the 5 P’s… products, policies, prices, pipeline, and paperwork.  The 5 P’s are very important, but they do not fully teach the most valuable skills of the sales trade…like the “art of closing”, for example.  When a company brings in a good outside sales trainer, they demonstrate to their sales team that they care enough to invest significantly in their success.  Besides the message this investment sends to the sales team, it also produces higher sales results.  Nice side effect, huh?  Increased revenue means more money in the sales reps’ pockets and hopefully more profit in the company’s coffers.  So, whenever my clients talk about their strategy for “attracting the best people”, I usually ask them about their strategy for *keeping* those people.  (…of course, that’s where I come in!)

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