Hiring a new employee can be tough in any industry. But, hiring the right person in retail/sales settings can be especially stressful. This person is responsible for driving up your revenue, so he or she will have the capacity to make or break your business, to an extent. Here are some quick tips that will guide you in hiring the right salesperson to foster a successful environment.
As a business owner, you already have a full plate in front of you. You have to be business savvy, know your market, and keep track of everything that goes along with it. Adding the responsibilities of profiling customers, marketing and selling products, creating pricing tiers and actually making the sale would make your job next to impossible. So, it’s important to hire someone you trust to take those responsibilities off your hands.
Make sure you’re specific about the job requirements. Don’t leave any room for guessing. Also, be sure you don’t have any typos or grammatical errors in your job posting as this tends to turn off experienced, educated, knowledgeable salespeople.
Ask open-ended questions. When your questions are broad rather than simple “yes or no” questions, it forces the interviewee to think on his or her feet. And, since it’s unlikely that they will have a planned answer for every single open-ended question you ask, it’s more likely that you will get their honest answer. For example, if you want to gauge their success at closing a sale, don’t simply ask, “How often do you try to close on a deal?” as their answer will surely be, “Every time.” Instead, ask “During an appointment with a potential client, what is your normal plan of action?” Be sure to pay close attention and take notes on their answer. Or, even bring in a small recording device so that you can review the interview at a later date.
It’s okay to be a little bit shallow. Everyone likes to say that you should never judge a book by its cover, but in reality, everyone does it. This doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to hire your most attractive candidate, but you do want to be sure to hire someone who will be well-groomed and present themselves in a professional manner. After all, this is who your customers are going to be interacting with. Put yourself in the client’s shoes and decide whether or not, at first glance, you would be interested in talking to or buying from that person.
And finally, if you think you’ve found the right person, be sure to sell yourself! In today’s market, highly successful salespeople aren’t going to interview at just one place. And if you want to hire him or her, it is likely that another company does as well. Be sure to make the salesperson understand what your business is all about, and sell the best aspects of your company.