Why and how to recruit sales people that fit your culture.
Or Why Andy Murray would not get a job at Google!
Your company has a culture whether you know it, designed it, or it just evolved. So when a new recruit joins your organisation, be aware they are effectively joining your cult and might not fit in.
Like any cult there will be formal and informal group behaviour rules. These rules will govern a value system, how to behave in certain circumstances and even a dress code.
If a new appointee does not know the rules they are unlikely to survive, let alone prosper. In the first three months only the very astute will pick up all of these signals. Often the successful are those that by chance happened to have the same values, so no effort required. My 30 years in career consultancy and recruitment has shown me that time and time again career success goes to those who fit best into the cult. Corporate culture is the value system of the majority. The value system is what is important to them in terms of every aspect of human behaviour. It covers identity, beliefs, opinions, attitude, social class, age, dress, personality, everything. Which of these things is most important is part of the definition of the organisational style. Cultures evolve over time and are effected by industry sector, size, place of origin, personality and vision of founders. As small companies grow to large ones the culture becomes more rigidly defined.
So how do you know which appointee is right for you?
The right candidate is one whose personal value system reflects those core values etc of your organisation and the department. One in which the new person can identify and easily rapport with current members. To do this you need to know your team and organisation culture in order to recruit to match to it. What are your corporate and team values, beliefs, ambitions, and motivations?
As a professional recruiter I can tell you 90 per cent of people cannot really identify what drives them. Before you can understand what drives the people in any particular company, first you need to know what drives you so as to make a successful match. Here is a quick test – ask these probing questions.
What really motivates your key sales long term performers?
What are their career values?
Where exactly do they want to be in one/five years?
What core career beliefs do they operate by?
What are their ambitions?
Where do their ambitions come from?
How important do they consider a dress code?
How much money is their goal to earn?
When you have answered these questions for your current team, then ask the same questions to any applicant. The most common answers to the above questions from company members define its culture. The great thing about recruiting to match values is that applicants will not usually know what they are. This defeats their efforts to answer with what they thought was the right answer. So you can automate this with an online or paper handout for them to complete.
Assessing the culture
Wise applicants, whatever the job will assess the culture of a target company. They will establish its values, style, beliefs, motivations and goals.
The culture of a company is everywhere. It comes all over social media in its employees, its offices, advertisements, and dealings with the public. Applicants will nearly always put your company name into an internet search engine and read everything that has been written. Then they will typically put individual names into LinkedIn and Facebook. From what they read is this a company they would want to be part of? Firstly do they have a clearly defined culture? This tends to indicate a company which is going places. Virgin, British Airways, Marks and Spencer, Price Waterhouse Coopers, Google, Apple, Amazon – all have a clear identity and values. A different type of person will fit in and progress well in each of these organisations.
The secret of judging how well defined the culture is found by looking for commonality at all levels. A company may have a 1,000 people working for it. The question is what binds them? What sets them apart? What lets you know that they are representing that particular organisation?
So it’s not how they dress that’s important but how they dress relative to each other. It is not the particular value set that is important in itself but that they and share common core values.
So look for commonality in every aspect of them. How they answer the phone, dress, talk to each other, plan out their offices, incentivise their staff, train their staff, report and accounts, marketing, advertising styles, competitive stance etc. You problem is being part of that culture it is the norm for you so harder to identify than an outsider.
How would you describe the culture of the following organisations?
Barclays Bank, Tescos, Disney, The Army, Oxfam.
Which above organisation do you think would have most of the following core values?
Attention to detail
Benefit to others
Smart Dress Code
What are the core values of your organisation?
Ask your colleagues and you will find that your answers are much the same. The point being that their culture is that clear and agreed upon.
From the above, list the three most important values to you? Now when you recruit, test applicants for their values and see if they line up.
You will significantly improve staff retention when you have a clear definition of your culture and recruit people that match it. As long as not to far off, most competencies can be trained. This is a lot easier than changing someone’s attitude or personality. Wrong recruits are not only expensive to replace they can be very demotivating to the others in the team. Tere is a template questionnaire to use to establish individual and therefore corporate culture.
Now most of us recognise the talent of Andy Murray and you should all know by now why he would never of got a job in Google.
For additional help please contact Alex McMillan +44 07525-916574 firstname.lastname@example.org