How the Tough Get Going ? And Why
Distributors talk about evaluating and compensating their sales representatives' job performances.
These are penny-pinching times and, more than ever, sales professionals must go the extra mile to edge out competitors and convince customers to expend precious financial resources. So, just what is it that keeps printed products distributors going day after day?
Here, 12 company executives—identified in the chart below— share their views on compensating, training and hiring.
When it comes to hiring sales representatives, the consensus is that industry experience is a definite plus, although both Sherie Bartlett and Walt Smith observed that it isn't always easy to come by. Mark Duchene added that very few talented, successful reps ever look to make a change.
Smith concurred. "We have found it difficult to locate well-trained industry professionals to fill sales positions. The last major hire was from outside of the industry, and he is doing a wonderful job. Instead of looking for print salespeople," he said, "we now locate and groom what we call contract and systems sales professionals. We want computer-literate, money-motivated candidates with strong written and verbal communication skills, a professional appearance, and high energy and vision."
Said Glenn Martin, "Industry experience is a must because we don't have a formal training program. But, we also look for an energetic team player who manages time effectively." DPS Printing Services requires an experienced rep to also have a transferable account base.
For Robert Troop, character and desire to succeed are more important than industry experience. "Our business model breeds entrepreneurialism," he explained, "so we look for professionals with that mentality."
At Voluforms, printing and technical knowledge are evaluated, as well as scores on a sales test. GBS conducts personality profile testing on college-degreed applicants who undergo a multi-stage interview process with management and human resources. "We also run credit checks," added John "Skip" Dragoiu.