Sales Rep Crash and Burn Blamed on Employers’ Failure to Launch

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Nearly 50% of high-performing sales reps identify the availability of onboarding as a key factor when considering a new position, however 62% of companies consider themselves ineffective at onboarding new sales hires, according to the Sales Management Association. The ineffective onboarding on the part of employers is blamed for most sales force failures, HireBox CEO Patrick Valtin notes.

Hirebox | Professional Development

Patrick Valtin, CEO of Hirebox, renders the importance of training as a pathway to further professional development.

“When training is provided as part of a longer development pathway, employees will have much more incentive to polish their sales performance skills, participate in the session and put the new skills into practice.”

Only 6% of newly hired sales reps exceed their employers’ expectations, while 48% will fail. The ensuing turnover for the average sales team runs at 34%, leading to finger-pointing as to the cause of failure.[1] The data points to corporations’ failure to properly launch new sales personnel for any lack of success.[2] Recruiting and hiring are costly; one DePaul University study reported that it costs organizations $97,960 to replace the average sales rep.[3] “Most of these disturbing statistics can be avoided through proper hiring, effective onboarding, and continuous training” notes president and CEO of HireBox.com, Patrick Valtin. He points to 54% greater new hire productivity and 50% greater new hire retention for organizations with a standard onboarding process experience.[4]

To properly balance an organization and yield sales force success, talent acquisition, onboarding and continued training must carry equal weight to yield a successful outcome. Hiring sales reps based on hard skills alone (measurable skills such as the use of software programs, mathematics, reading) ignores important qualities that make an effective salesperson. Personality-related (soft) skills such as people drive, purpose drive, persuasion, and confidence build lasting relationships, the hallmark of a solid salesperson who is a trusted advisor.

79% of professional buyers indicate that it’s important to interact with a salesperson who can add value to their business.[5] Value in the form of connections. Valtin has experienced that companies with effective sales onboarding improve quota attainment by 6.7%.[6] As a reflection of the data, 69% of employees are more likely to stay with a company for three years if they experienced great onboarding followed by training. Onboarding is bigger than any one person or department; it should be inclusive of all managers in the organization.

The path to a successful sales force doesn’t end here, however. Every dollar invested in sales training returns incremental revenues, while continuous training gives 50% higher net sales per employee.[7] “When training is provided as part of a longer development pathway, employees will have much more incentive to polish their sales performance skills, participate in the session and put the new skills into practice” notes Valtin.

Based on experience managing a comprehensive recruiting, hiring, onboarding and training process for ensuring sales force success right out of the gate, Patrick Valtin recommends that companies:

  • Define responsibilities, processes and expectations for the position immediately upon hiring and show the sales person HOW you are going to help them get there.
  • Have on-the-job training ready, as a tool to balance theory with practical application.
  • Ensure that the company’s employee handbook is reviewed, easily available and all administrative procedures covered.
  • Consider pairing the new hire with a “buddy”—an employee who can answer questions, provide a stabilizing voice in the organization, and help the new staff member around.

Patrick Valtin points out that “A program such as the HireBox Sales Talent Acquisition, Onboarding & Training Program combines all three elements, providing a trifecta of the human resources experience for an effective sales force—one that will outperform the competition on every front.” For more information on this program, visit http://www.salestalent.academy.

About HireBox.com

HireBox International is a results-based testing platform utilizing legal quality control to give hiring missions the best outcome, beginning with its unique performance-based Sales Talent Acquisition, Onboarding & Training Program. Founded by Patrick Valtin, the job-matching assessments and internal evaluations provide vital information about potential and current employees to human resource professionals, executive coaches, management consultants and CPAs.
Based on an evaluation of over 25,000 applicants, Valtin concluded that no matter the talent, competencies or experience, the odds of a successful hire are very, very low if both the willingness and ability to contribute to the team’s success and happiness are not included in the selection criteria. For more information on HireBox and its successful tools for recruitment, assessment, hiring, onboarding and retention, visit http://www.hirebox.com.

About Patrick Valtin

Patrick Valtin is the president and CEO of New Era Management and HireBox, as well as an international speaker and author. Considered an industry leader in recruiting, pre-employment assessment, personnel performance evaluation and human resources development, he has trained more than 140,000 people in over 35 countries over the last 30 years. Valtin was an international business consultant for the Belgian government between 1986 and 1988, later starting his Belgian company, U-MAN, in 1988. The company remains today the largest training company in the country for small businesses. Valtin received an MBA in International Business Studies from the Moore Business School at the University of South Carolina in 1982; his clients over the past 22 years have included Ford Motor Co., BMW, Mercedes, Motorola, IBM and Century 21. He is the author of the “Client Success Optimizer” training program.

(1)    Comaford, Christine. “Salespeople are Burning Out Faster Than Ever—Here’s Why.” Forbes. 18 June 2016. Web.
(2)    Staff. “66 Crazy Sales Figures.” Go.IKO-Systems. PDF. Web.
(3)    Staff. “How Much Does it Cost to Replace a Sales Rep?” Ideal. PDF. Web
(4)    Solar, Aria. “The Onboarding New Hire Statistics You Need to Know.” UrbanBound. 16 January 2015. Web.
(5)    Fatemi, Falon. “Insight Selling is the New Solution Selling.” Forbes. 27 August 2018. Web.
(6)    Schenk, Tamara. “Three Ways Your Onboarding Program Drives Sales Results.” CSO Insights. 01 November 2018. Web.
(7)    Williams, Brian. “21 Mind-Blowing Sales Stats.” The Brevet Group. Web.

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