Despite our initial screening efforts, sales candidates occasionally score lower than expected on measures of Drive. For example, candidates with a history of success at a large company may have relied on its brand recognition and collateral materials. Similarly, some candidates are strong interviewees, and can look great on paper and interview well over the phone, but they may not have the internal motivation we need in a “hunter” salesperson. Nonetheless, when we are disappointed by a candidate’s score, it can be very tempting to re-test the candidate, thinking that perhaps the first result simply missed the mark. However, when we re-test candidates, we take a serious risk . . .
It’s a million dollar difference.
There are many salespeople who can sell. They have the intelligence, the wits and the charisma. But there are far, far less salespeople who will sell, in a sustained way, over time. The difference? Drive.
After reviewing sales candidate resumes, hiring managers often add a phone screen to determine whether to move the candidate forward into the testing and interviewing process. This 20-30 minute phone call helps bring the candidate’s resume to life and provides some excellent clues about whether he or she has the characteristics the company is seeking. Since the time is short, hiring managers often wonder about the best questions to ask.
Here is a salesperson phone screen protocol, we use and recommend, to help you determine whether a candidate is likely to be successful in the testing and interviewing process.
Optimism is critical to sustained sales success for two reasons: