I have been using the Sales Style Indicator from the Consulting Resource Group in my seminars and have also managed to set up a considerable network of HR, sales and recruitment professionals that now also use the tool. Although there is no “ideal style” for a sales professional across the board, in specific types of selling such as retail auto sales or certain types of medical products that some personality styles do seem to succeed with less resistance.
Here’s how I use the tool for recruitment and even succession planning:
Step 1 The JSI or Job Style Indicator
Online Job Style Indicator (JSI)
(view a sample report) This will give me a 360-degree view of what the characteristics, attitudes, behaviors and competencies of the ideal sales candidate for that particular organization will most likely be.
It’s important to note that based upon organizational culture, geography and the leadership style of the organization that two companies or even divisions will often have varied Job Style Profiles. Just because you do well selling for BMW doesn’t necessarily mean you will fit in at Ford. In other words successful Ford sales people may have a different profile than successful BMW sales people because of the varying corporate cultures and client demographics.
Step 2 The SSI or Sales Style Indicator (view sample report)
Online Sales Style Indicator (SSI)
I don’t do this profile with every candidate but if I have a position to fill it is one of the last tools I use to find who comes closest to the profile I am looking for. The Sales Style Profile is one of the most comprehensive and consistent tools I have used for profiling and selection. Unlike a temperament based tools like DISC or Myers Briggs type tests I find it much more accurate (personal opinion and experience) and it’s also less than $50 per assessment.
It is important to note employment law in your region as with some Canadian provinces and some states in America disqualifying a candidate because of personality style can be deemed a violation of the law. A better way to frame the tool is that you want to understand how they will need to be managed and motivated if they in fact do get the job, the profile itself is not a determinant but a “get to know you tool.”
With that said each short-listed candidate fills out a profile online (it only takes 12 minutes ) and then we can compare and contrast how well they are aligned with the JSI, we can also determine based upon style their orientation to team work and how well they will relate to the style of their future sales manager.
From a leadership perspective when I am coaching or managing a sales team by understanding their Sales Style Profile I can save days or even weeks of effort that it would traditionally take to understand what really motivates individual sales people.
My suggestion is even if you’re a one-person show, this tool can help you improve your sales process and your approach to relating to clients and prospects.
IMPORTANT NOTE: If you manage a sales team of 20+ sales professionals or are a recruiter, I have access to a limited number of demo or free assessments that CRG has made available to me for those that want to test them out and compare them to what they’re using now. E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org to see if you qualify.