Hiring an effective sales team is one of the most difficult challenges for a technology entrepreneur. It isn’t that there aren’t good sales people out there, it is just that sales is usually foreign to technologists, and like non-technical people trying to hire technical people, it is hard to determine who will be successful. Sales people can be even more challenging to figure out because by their very nature they are good at selling, especially themselves.
One of the best things to do as part of hiring a new sales person is to establish success milestones. These are milestones for the sales rep to achieve during their first six months to a year, assuming you have a consultative sales process with a decent learning curve. Here are some categories to measure:
- Call conversations logged
- Demos scheduled and completed
- Opportunities created
- Opportunities closed won (sales made!)
Of course, these are standard metrics to track for sales people. What I’m emphasizing here is to have specific numbers of each that are required to be met for every 30 day period to stay on the bus until quota is achieved. What gets measured gets done.