My Medical Device Sales Career
One of the toughest jobs in a company is being the first line sales manager! It is a challenge to drive sales numbers, manage a team of sales people and back-fill open sales positions (while you are trying to manage the open territory or territories too!).
If you are a new manager, this balancing act can become even more stressful with a heightened need to delegate and prioritize your time. The goal is to maximize your time in the field coaching your current sale team to success and minimize your time interviewing deadbeat candidates.
4 Most Important Roles of a Sales Manager
As a Regional Director, I would tell my team of District Sales Managers, "The trick is to find time to do both sides of the equation equally well; interviewing and selecting top sales talent, while still coaching and driving business with the rest of your sales team."
Knowing how to minimize your time interviewing a poor stream of job candidates for your opening(s) becomes the key to efficiently doing both tasks at hand; interviewing and coaching your current team of sales people to new heights.
Selecting and "managing the right recruiter" can be a vital resource to a sales manager by filtering out less qualified candidates and presenting only the right candidates; the ones that have the possibility of being the next sales superstar. This interviewing approach helps managers balance the time needed between interviewing and running the rest of their sales team to bring in current new business and sales numbers.
You need to manage a recruiter as if they worked for you as an employee. In addition, you must take charge of the interview process and clearly communicate interview time frames and goals that need to be hit for your anticipated hiring date. If they don't perform within the first 1 to 3 weeks, you will let them go or hire someone else (another firm) to send additional candidates to the one's they already sent to you. Getting this right will improve the quality of the candidates sent to you and if done correctly, you will have another vital member added to your sales team; a recruiter who is engaged and vested in you and your team. (see no. 6 below).
Recruiters that have earned a trustworthy reputation with your company can be utilized as a “second set of hands” to screen out unworthy candidates and reduce or even eliminate your time scheduling, organizing, communicating and needless interacting with job candidates. Maximizing a recruiter can translate into having more time to be in the field driving sales numbers and coaching your current team of salespeople instead of wasting time with candidates who are not worthy of it! The opportunity cost of spending enormous sums of time interviewing people that should never be placed before you is huge. Maximizing your internal and external recruiter could help insure that you only see the "best fit" candidates and ultimately find the talent that you can coach to be your next star employee and ultimately further your own career too!
10 Tips to Interview Only The Best Candidates
Hiring the right recruiter and directing them in a smart way can truly maximize a Hiring Managers time. Make sure YOU and YOUR RECRUITER are hitting the deadlines you established for each step in the interview process. It is a two way street; DON'T be the one to drag the interview process or slow it down. It is important to keep the momentum going with your current candidates. If you indicated you would be hiring within 8 weeks, then keep it going! Don't lose great candidates to other companies or frankly, time for them to be unimpressed with your interview process.
Great candidates will turn down jobs or reject the next step if they view a hiring manager dragging an interview process down, leaving them hanging or in the dark as to their forward movement in the process. The way a hiring manager handles the interview process is a reflection of their overall sales management skills. Good candidates see this as part of their interviewing process as they evaluate a company.
Remember, good candidates want to work for good managers and they are viewing first hand time management and communication skills of the potential new boss. Make sure you utilize the 10 Tips to Interview NOT Only The Best Candidates, but to be the best sales manager to attract them, hire them and drive your sales team to success!
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