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The Center for Sales Strategy Blog

Looking for Talent in all the "Wrong" Places

looking for superstar sales talentA recruiter walks into a bar, a church, and a mall…

No, that's not the opening line of a mildly inappropriate joke, it's where you need to go to find superstar talent. No, I'm not kidding. 

Let me guess, you've been recruiting from your competition for years, right? How is that working out for you? Wait, don't tell me. You don't need to. I hear the complaints from sales managers every day from every part of the country. It doesn't matter if you are in one of the largest markets or one of the smallest, finding great, talented salespeople is TOUGH! 

Often, you look at your direct or indirect competitors and think well, at least they "know" your business. Well, that may be true, but also means that comes with a lot of baggage, problems, and issues. Wouldn't it be great if you could find untapped, talent superstars that you could train "your way?" YOU CAN! But, you have to look in different places for different things.   

"Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results..." well you know the rest.  It's CRAZY!

In the last few months, I've spoken with clients who have found superstar talent in some unusual places. Yes, at their church, their bar, and even the mall (and yes, these were three different managers). So, I've come up with three tips to help you discover talent in all the right places. 

Finding Sales Talent in All the Right Places

1. Look Around

You are interacting with dozens, hundreds, even thousands of people daily. When you are eating at your favorite restaurant, have you ever considered the waiters or bartenders who are outgoing or super positive? When you are buying a new car, furniture, or home, are you looking for talented salespeople? You should be. These are opportunities to find pure sales talent that you can train the way that you want without all of those bad habits. 

2. Pass Out Your Card

Not your business card, but rather a card with a link to your talent assessment. If you are a client of CSS, then you have a bulk link to your OSTI assessment. You have unlimited use of it... use it! I have several clients that have created shortened URL's using bit.ly for their bulk link, so it's easy to print on a card. That way, anytime you run into someone that interests you, you can ask them if they have ever considered a career in B2B sales. Hand them your card, and who knows? Maybe you just found your next superstar seller.

3. It's a Numbers Game

Whether you've thought about it or not, recruiting is just like sales. It's a numbers game. To find superstar salespeople, you are going to need to be constantly looking for the proverbial "needle in a haystack." For every 100 people that you might speak with, you might find five superstars. Your talent bank should be filled to the brim with potential candidates. So, if you are going to need to hire five salespeople this year, you will need to add two people per week, every week, to find five superstars.

Stop searching for sales talent the same ways over and over again, only to turn up with lackluster results. Start looking for superstar sales talent in all the "wrong" places, which might actually prove to be all of the BEST places to find the superstar you never thought you'd find. 

Topics: hiring salespeople