I've been on a rant about too many CEOs, COOs, CFOs, and boards of directors not really understanding what sales leadership is all about and therefore continuing to hire (and promote) people that can't get the job done. That's why sales is last on line in many companies with respect to quality, discipline, process, measurement, attrition, and productivity. The bad news is that ineffective sales managers and their ineffective VPs of sales aren't going to fix the situation. It's got to be fixed from above with far more effective recruiting for those sales leadership positions.
I was buoyed today when I read an article, "The Definitive Guide to Recruiting in Good Times and Bad" from the most recent Harvard Business Review. From the email I received:
In 32% of 500 companies surveyed in 2008, candidates for senior executive positions went through only 1 to 5 interviews, while 12% of firms subjected candidates to 21 or more. Shockingly, only half of those recruited for the top three tiers of management were interviewed by anyone in the C-suite. And fully half the companies relied primarily on the hiring manager's gut feel, selecting a candidate believed to have "what it took" to be successful in any job.
Let me say it again. Mis-hiring is an epidemic. Gut feel doesn't work. One more time: Gut feel doesn't work.
Photo credit: © Emmanuel MARZIN - Fotolia.com
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