Want to Recruit Top Salespeople? Do This One Thing
bySoleMonth1005-11-201710:18 AM - edited 05-11-201710:28 AM
Daily, I hear sales leaders commenting how hard it is to find great candidates in this market. A search I ran on LinkedIn this morning bears this out.
In just the last 15 days, 468 companies posted “Account Executive” openings in Boston alone. That’s a rate of five new postings per business hour. Beyond the sheer volume, we’re also missing the mark in messaging (see below). It’s no wonder the majority of posts on LinkedIn get fewer than 10 applicants:
While there’s no silver bullet, there is a relatively simple step that too many companies miss: build and share a role elevator pitch.
Sell the role before you document the duties
I’m sure you know the hiring profile you’re looking for. Most leaders have a solid handle on the behaviors and competencies that make for an ideal candidate. But far too few have spent much time thinking about their role from the candidate perspective.
Have you documented, however informally, your role elevator pitch?
Approach this as you would when creating messaging against a competitor. You don’t need flowing prose or Madison Avenue ad copy. You do need a few bullets on why this role matters and why your company makes for an amazing opportunity. Imagine three overlapping circles.
Circle #1 is what candidates want.
Circle #2 is what competitors offer.
Circle # 3 is what your company offers.
The overlap between all three circles (red) are points of non-differentiation. This is what every employer offers, or at least claims to offer. Focus on the overlap between Circles #1 and #3 (green). The core of your role elevator pitch should be the intersection of what candidates are looking for and what you uniquely bring to the table.
Sharpening your hiring edge.
The role elevator pitch is the basis for your job description, outreach InMails, and recruiter messaging. It has to pop. I want to share a few examples with you. To simplify things, I’ve built a sort of Mad Libs™ for Hiring to get you started.
I found a few job descriptions that I thought were excellent. I worked backwards to mock up what their role elevator pitch might look like:
Inside Sales Associate at memoryBlue For goal-oriented young professionals with a history of rising to the top, Who are looking to start their professional journey in technology sales, Join us and lay the foundation for an amazing and lucrative career.
Account Executive (Unnamed Marketing Tech) For experienced Fortune 1000 technology sellers, Who are looking to join a well-funded start-up with A-list investors, Join us and take a seat on a rocket ship while you exceed $275K on plan.
Learning Technology & Creative Specialist at Rapid7 For serial podcasters, iMovie whizzes, or Final Cut Pro fanatics, Who are looking to be part of a growing technology company, Join us and put your talents to use creating and scaling formal and informal learning and training programs.
These examples should provide you with a starting point. You don’t have to be Ernest Hemingway or Toni Morrison to pull this off. But you do need to flip your mindset from "what traits do I need" to "what aspirations can I speak to".
The focus on attracting top talent is just one of several current strategic sales development trends that successful leaders are following. Want to learn more? Join us next Thursday, May 18th, at 10 am PDT for Laurie Page's webinar, Strategic Sales Development Trends for 2017 & Beyond. We will cover the shifting B2B market and why your approach to growing pipeline with sales development needs to shift along with it. You will learn about the return of ROI, the rise of account-based sales development, challenges of retaining top talent, and more. Click here to register for free!
Note: This article was originally published by Matt Bertuzzi, Sales & Marketing Operations at The Bridge Group, Inc., on May 2nd, 2017, on The Bridge Group blog.
Laurie Page is Managing Partner at The Bridge Group, Inc. and is never shy to point out tactics masquerading as strategy. Her straight-forward approach and laser focus make her the go-to resource for both her clients and colleagues. An expert at developing strategic initiatives and tactical implementation plans, Laurie ensures the delivery of high quality, results-driven solutions to each of The Bridge Group’s clients. As Managing Partner, she leverages her colleagues’ experience in sales process methodology, measurement and metric development, project management, and recruiting to build high performing teams for clients.
A trusted advisor, coach, and mentor, Laurie uses her two decades of strategic sales management experience to build the capacity of The Bridge Group and each of its inside sales consultants. Those same skills are used to help her B2B technology clients build, expand, and optimize their inside sales teams.
Today, Laurie works with clients to conduct sales assessments, improve the effectiveness of sales teams, and assist sales managers in developing the skills required to manage and coach their teams.