When recruiting super sales staff you will always be better served looking for aptitude rather than expertise. Unfortunately, most recruiters do not understand this and will always hire for expertise.
Aptitude is harder to identify in individuals but it will deliver stronger sales outcomes.
Do not only limit yourself to applicants from your industry, your category, and your competitors – look for sales staff with an aptitude for selling services or products which resonates with your type of customer buyer personas.
“Expertise consists of those characteristics, skills and knowledge of a person which distinguish experts from novices and less experienced people. In many domains there are objective measures of performance capable of distinguishing experts from novices: expert chess players will almost always win games against recreational chess players; expert medical specialists are more likely to diagnose a disease correctly; etc.”
This is a specific set of knowledge & skills that can usually be taught or be learned.
“Aptitude is a competency to do a certain kind of work at a certain level, which can also be considered “talent”. Aptitudes may be physical or mental. Aptitude is not developed knowledge, understanding, learned or acquired ability.”
Teach your recruiters to hire for Aptitude and your customers and your company will reap the rewards.
David is a Director at Sentia, a next generation sales enablement technology company. Dave’s passion for helping people with their sales, marketing, business strategy, startup growth and strategic planning has taken him across the globe and spans numerous industries. You can follow him on Twitter @intlmktentry LinkedIn or on Sentia Says.