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The Center for Sales Strategy Blog

Beth Sunshine

Beth Sunshine

Recent Posts by Beth Sunshine:

5 Biggest Interview Pitfalls—and How to Avoid Them

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Interviewing salespeople is tough! Screening, uncovering, and selecting top talent takes a lot of practice and a reliable process. And it is essential to avoid the most common pitfalls along the way.

As far as interview questions go, the best are the ones provided in a validated scientific talent instrument used (toward the end of your selection process) by a certified Talent Analyst. The next best interview questions are those you yourself can ask each candidate to gain insight into their thoughts, feelings, and behaviors—to determine whether there is enough evidence of talent to invest more time in them.

I often work with our clients to help them improve their interview techniques and become better at moving the right people forward in the funnel. Those who are the very best at recruiting and selecting top talent know that strong screening in the beginning leads to a much more talented candidate pool every time. Those that don’t commit to that kind of consistent practice tend to get stuck in one of five common interviewing traps and often find themselves disappointed with the underperformance of those they’ve brought on board.

In order to better take advantage of every golden interview opportunity that comes your way, you need to know these traps welland then avoid them.

Topics: hiring salespeople Talent

How to Hire a Great Sales Hunter

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Simple life lesson: One of the best ways to find exactly what you need is to know exactly what you’re looking for.

We regularly work with hiring managers and recruiters to clearly define the role they are working to fill so they know exactly what they need for superstar performance. This morning I received an email from a sales manager asking which talents he should look for to hire a strong sales hunter. Great question! So good, in fact, I thought I’d share my response with you.

Topics: hiring salespeople Talent

Take Your Group from Team to Tribe

team to tribeSpend time studying the most successful companies with the strongest cultures and you will find they have clearly-defined values and they navigate their way with a strong sense of purpose and cause. Employees who work at these companies can clearly articulate their values and they believe they can be themselves at work because they truly belong.

Topics: company culture

What Do Your Salespeople Think of You as a Sales Manager?

sales manager coaching sales teamDo other people really see you for who you are? Are you maximizing your natural strengths in your work? It’s often hard to know!

I recently worked with a sales manager in our Executive Coaching program and helped him get to the bottom of how he was perceived by his sales team. It was an incredible discovery, and I think you will find the story both interesting and useful.

Topics: sales management Talent

Sales Performance Happens When Everyone is Maximizing Their Strengths - Including the Manager

sales performance maximize strengthsCoaching is a hot topic! Makes sense... people who use their strengths every day are 12.5% more productive in their work. Any strong manager knows they need to coach their people to maximize their strengths, so they can benefit from that natural lift in performance.   

Topics: Management developing strengths sales management Talent

8 Things You Should Do To Turn Talent Into Performance

turn talent into performanceAfter an interesting talent feedback call, I had spoken with a sales manager who was dealing with a challenge that most managers deal with at some point in their career. Can you identify with the following situation – and can you learn from this story?

The good news: The salesperson he is managing is highly talented. She has a lot of natural ability, and when she is engaged, she’s one of her company’s top performers.

The bad news: She is not that engaged. She is occupied with other things outside of work and seems to lack the desire and drive to succeed in her job. 

We talk a lot at The Center for Sales Strategy about putting the right people in the right jobs and we believe that when you do that, they naturally soar with their strengths. Throw a fish in the water and it swims. Put Taylor Swift on stage and she belts it out. Hire someone who is born to sell, and they sell.

Except when they don’t.  

Topics: sales performance Talent coaching

24 Ways to Effectively Coach Millennial Salespeople

effectively coach millennial salespeopleDo Millennials simply have less sales talent than prior generations?

After conducting tens of thousands of sales talent assessments, we here at The Center for Sales Strategy can assure you that’s not the case.

In part one of this two-part series, I shared four key differences in how the Millennial generation was raised, insight I gained from Brad Karsh in my never-ending quest to learn more about how to activate Millennials. These differences explain much of the enormous disconnect between many Millennial workers and their managers today.

Topics: sales management Talent Sales coaching company culture

Help! How Do I Coach a Millennial With Sales Talent?

coaching millennials with sales talentIf you have hired a salesperson that is younger than 36 years old, you hired a millennial. And you may sometimes feel like many of the other sales managers I talk to every day…

  • “They need lots of handholding.”
  • “They lack the drive of the generations before them.”
  • “They can be overly sensitive and more focused on making friends than making sales.”

As a Talent Analyst, I spend a lot of time identifying people’s innate sales talents and helping managers make smart selection decisions. Once each hire is made, I work with the sales manager to turn talent into ever-increasing performance by maximizing each seller’s strengths and working around their weaknesses.

So my attention is sharply focused on two things: Talent and Fit. 

Topics: sales management Talent coaching

15 Things Every Great Sales Manager Knows

great sales managerI may have the greatest job in the world. Seriously! Here’s what I do every day: talk with people who are actively engaged in sharing important information with me, figure out what makes those people “tick,” work with sales managers to understand the talents of the people they are interviewing, help them to hire the very best people for the job, focus on the unique strengths of individuals, and help managers to coach their direct reports to become wildly successful. It really doesn’t get much better than that.

And best of all, I have the privilege to work closely with some of the greatest managers out there. After all these years, I can tell you that there are 15 things that every great manager knows. 

Topics: hiring salespeople sales management Talent Sales

The Secret to Sales Success (It's Not Enough to Hire Talented People)

building relationships for sales successAbout a year ago I conducted a sales talent assessment for an up-and-coming college graduate who had very little sales experience but was loaded with both raw talent and a passion for sales. We’ll call her Ashley. The hiring manager, let’s go with Brenda, was thrilled to be able to get someone with such potential “on the cheap,” so she made her an offer right away, which Ashley quickly accepted. 

Topics: Management sales management sales training coaching onboarding