5 Things You Must Do After an Interview to Avoid Hiring The Wrong Sales Candidate
Every hiring manager knows the job interview can go one of two ways…you either hire the right candidate or the wrong one.
If you’ve ever found a great candidate after a long search and you were really excited about hiring them, but, after the interview, you weren’t 100% sure they’d be a good fit, you’re not alone!
It’s perfectly normal to experience some misgivings after interviewing someone, especially if there were multiple candidates in a given hiring cycle. Some people may be great at interviews and have an easy time selling themselves to you and your company, while others struggle.
You don’t have to make the wrong decision!
There are things you can do to make sure you hire the right person…
After interviewing hundreds of sales candidates over the last 10 years, here is what I’ve discovered you must do after an interview to make sure you hire the right person.
Take a look back and check yourself.
Now is not the time to get emotionally involved and start making a hiring decision based on your feelings.
There’s nothing wrong with getting excited, but don’t let emotions dictate your decision-making process. Instead, ask yourself which candidate would be the best person for your team. This is a tough question to answer objectively, that’s why we always recommend going back to the data!
Review the data from your initial assessment and compare it to what you saw on the phone interview and the first in-person interview. Does it match up?
It’s human nature to bond with candidates once we meet them in person, but you have to resist the desire to hire the candidate with the personality you feel most strongly attracted to.
Hiring based on personality at this point is a huge liability…don’t make that mistake!
Let the data be your guide, and you are practically guaranteed you’ll make the right choice!
Yup – that’s it! After the first in-person interview, wait to see how the candidates independently follow up with you.
Do they send a note or an email thanking you?
Do they follow up with additional research on topics you discussed?
Do they just walk away never to contact you again?
How they follow up with you after the interview gives you great insight into how they’ll handle the follow-up part of the sales process if hired.
You want someone who demonstrates confidence, a grateful but not overly emotional response, and who can keep their poise and professionalism during stressful times…
If you give your candidates the chance to show you who they are, 99% of the time they will reveal exactly the kind of sales professional they are.
Now, you have to switch gears and sell the opportunity to the candidate.
It’s time for the “good cop” interview! Bring your top 2-3 candidates back in for a second in-person interview. Only after the successful completion of this interview are you able to make a choice about which candidate has the personality to fit into your corporate culture….
But before that, this is your chance to show them why working with you makes more sense than working for your competitors.
You need to be a salesperson during this part.
Focus on how your business is a better choice than others they may be considering working for. Tell them about the benefits, both tangible and intangible, that come from working with you!
You need to be very persuasive and have answers to their questions. Come prepared with good ideas and solutions to the issues they may have presented during previous interviews.
Also at this point, watch for signs of hesitancy. Is the candidate acting “wishy-washy” or do they appear undecided or not very excited about the opportunity? If so, call them out on it and ask why. It could be a sign they aren’t as excited for the opportunity as you assume they should be…don’t be afraid to find out why.
Set the right expectations for your ideal candidate.
Make sure you set realistic expectations for your new hires. You should never put an inexperienced employee in a position that requires an advanced skill set. Tell them exactly what will be expected of them so they can be certain they’re up to the role before they accept it.
In order to ensure your candidate is aware of your expectations (and that they’re willing to accept the responsibility for accomplishing them), let them know the following…
- How much are they expected to sell? If hiring a sales leader, what types of increase in revenue, salespeople, or clients are you expecting?
- Give them the timeline…”I expect you to close $1m in your first two years,” etc.
- What resources are available to help the candidate meet these goals?
- What type of environment will you set them up with so they can be successful?
- What training or support will be available to them?
Getting clear on expectations during the hiring process (instead of waiting until they’re onboarded) goes a long way towards creating an open line of communication that helps make sure only the right candidates become employees.
Stay cautiously curious and aware.
You are so close to hiring someone who is perfect for your business, but if they aren’t chomping at the bit to work with you, find out why!
It could be that there is an aspect of the position they aren’t very excited about – but if they have made it this far in your hiring process, you need to look and see how you can be flexible.
Candidates who have gotten to this point have earned a conversation about what they need to get to “hell yes!”
At this point, you really don’t want to let your top candidate get away!
You have invested a lot of time and energy into finding the right candidate, and may be feeling a bit tired from the process…but now is not the time to stop.
After the first in-person interview, there are still key steps to follow so that you don’t make a decision based on emotion that could destroy all the hard work you’ve done. Following this process will enable you to remain objective, flexible, and onboard the right candidate for your team.
Trust us when we say we know it can be a challenge, but finding the right sales superstar for your team is worth the effort.
We see all the time the difference the right sales team makes for the companies who invest in their hiring process and support their teams effectively.
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