“The secret of getting ahead is getting started. The secret of getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks, and then starting on the first one.”— Mark Twain (via nowdothis)
“Listen to the MUSTN’Ts, child.
Listen to the DON’Ts.
Listen to the SHOULDN’Ts.
The IMPOSSIBLES, the WON’Ts.
Listen to the NEVER HAVEs.
Then listen close to me —
Anything can happen, child.
ANYTHING can be.”—Shel Silverstein
“I have a mission now. My mission is to be the ray of hope, the guy who stands out there on that beautiful field and owns up to his mistakes and lets people know it’s never completely hopeless, no matter how bad it seems at the time. I have a platform and a message, and now I go to bed at night, sober and happy, praying I can be a good messenger.”—Josh Hamilton (via vasta)
Let me share with you some interesting stats I came across recently. They prove conclusively that your sales should rock if you don’t stop before making at least 5 calls on a customer.
According to Sales & Marketing Executives Club of Los Angeles, 81% of professional salespeople will close on the 5th customer call. Here’s the full breakdown:
2 % close on the 1st call 3 % close on the 2nd call 4 % close on the 3rd call 10 % close on the 4th call 81 % close on the 5th call
Next up, data from the Dartnell Corporation which reveals that 90% of all sales people stop trying to make a sale before the 5th customer call. Here’s the full rundown:
48 % quit after the 1st call 24 % quit after the 2nd call 12 % quit after the 3rd call 6 % quit after the 4th call 10 % quit after the 5th call
What does this all mean? It means that over 80% of sales are being made by 10% of the salespeople in the world. And if you don’t stop before the 5th customer call, chances are good you will be the #1 salesperson in your firm…maybe even #1 in your market.
“Reputation, Posterity and Cool are traps. They’ll drain the life from your life. Reputation, Posterity and Cool = Fear.”—Patton Oswalt’s commencement address at his old high school in VA. Read the whole thing; it’s really good. (via merlin)
The following is a list of 20 principles, laws, or guidelines to help you design and implement effective recruiting strategies and approaches:
A well-defined strategy. The foundation of any recruiting effort is a clearly defined and communicated strategy that illustrates the brand message, target candidates, primary sources, and most-effective closing approaches (the who, what, when, and how). Poorly defined or communicated strategy elements results in wasted resources and weak hires. In addition, the best strategies have the capability of “shifting” as the economy and the demand for candidates change.
Pipeline approach. The most effective recruiting approach is to build a steady stream of applicants (a pipeline). In order to build a continuous “talent pipeline,” use a “pre-need” approach that includes workforce planning, branding, continuous sourcing, and onboarding.
Competitive. The most effective recruiting approaches are compared against and are clearly superior to those of a firm’s talent competitors. Because competitors will quickly copy your most effective approaches, a continuous side-by-side assessment of “yours versus theirs” is necessary. A sub-principle applies to candidates: because the very best are always in high demand, if you don’t have to literally “fight” for a candidate, in most cases, you do not have the best candidate in the field.
Employment branding. The approach with the highest impact and the only long-term recruiting strategy is employment branding, the process of building your external image as an excellent place to work. By proactively making it easy for potential applicants to read, hear, or see the factors that make working at your firm exciting, you can dramatically increase the number and quality of your applicants over a long period.
Global. For jobs that require top talent, the process must have a global recruiting capability. This is because the very best talent is unlikely to live within commuting distance of your job.
Target employed “non-lookers.” The best recruiting processes are designed to identify and successfully hire currently employed top performers. This means that the process needs the capability of identifying and convincing employed individuals who work at your competitors and may not be actively looking for a position. Unfortunately, most corporate recruiting approaches are designed to attract “active” candidates.
Speed. Making fast hiring decisions is essential whenever a candidate in high demand decides to make a job switch. Top candidates must be hired using “their” decision timetable. Research shows that top candidates are off the market in less than half of the normal corporate time to fill.
Sourcing is critical. If you don’t utilize sources that attract a high percentage of top performers, it is unlikely you will make a quality hire. After employment branding, effective sourcing is the most critical element of the recruiting process. Generally, the most effective source is employee referrals. Other effective but under-used sources include recruiting at professional events and contests. Using ineffective sources means that you must spend inordinate amounts of time and money on candidate screening in order to avoid a weak hire. The source that is used must be shift, depending on the type of candidate required for that position. Unfortunately, many recruiters use the same exact sourcing scheme for every job.
Data-based decisions. Base decisions on sources, screening tools, and which individual to hire on facts and data, not emotion or even common practices. Making decisions based on objective data helps eliminate biases and causes the recruiting process to produce more consistent, reliable, and high-quality results. It’s also true that in a fast-changing world, “what works” changes quickly so recruiting practices become obsolete quickly. Unfortunately, rather than being a small part of recruiting decisions, emotions and “it’s the way we’ve always done it” tend to dominate corporate decision-making.
Build a recruiting culture. The most effective approaches build a corporate-wide “cultural of recruiting” where every manager and employee is a recruiter. Because of their continuous contact and interaction with outside talent, everyone must play an important supplemental role in identifying talent and in spreading the employment brand. The most effective recruiting strategies convince employees to be 24/7 talent scouts, making every employee a recruiter.
A candidate-centric approach. Focus the process on the candidate’s needs, their job selection criteria, and the candidate experience. A significant part of recruiting is “selling” the candidate on applying for and accepting the job. At least in part, recruiting must follow the customer relationship management (CRM) and the sales and marketing models. Often, the number-one reason why candidates reject job offers is the way that they were treated during the hiring process. It’s also important to note that candidates may be current or future customers, so treating them poorly can directly impact future revenue.
Prioritize jobs and targets. Effective recruiting processes maximize resource utilization by identifying and focusing on the positions with the highest business impact. That generally means revenue-producing and revenue-impact jobs, as well as jobs in high margin and rapid growth business units. The process should also target high-impact individuals known as top performers, innovators, and gamechangers.
Managers are the delivery system. Although corporate recruiting designs the process, managers “deliver” and execute a significant part of that process. As a result, hiring managers must understand its elements and support its precise execution. You must effectively demonstrate to individual hiring managers that they will suffer whenever a bad or “butts in chairs” hire is made. Therefore, recruiting must make a strong business case to individual hiring managers that convinces them of the importance of executing the process precisely. The most effective way of influencing hiring managers is by converting recruiting results into their dollar impact on that individual manager’s revenue and profit.
Diversity. An effective recruiting process must include enough variation and personalization to meet the unique needs of diverse individuals from around the world. Diversity and inclusiveness are becoming not just legal terms but critical components in building global sales.
Selling applicants. The very best recruiting processes builds “relationships” with potential applicants over time in order to increase their level of trust and interest. Unfortunately, no amount of benefits or job features will be convincing to high-demand applicants without this level of trust. Because all candidate-screening processes have flaws, stretching out the assessment process over time allows you to learn more about the candidate and decrease the chances of making a bad hire. The best approaches are designed to take advantage of the fact that a target candidate’s willingness to consider a new job changes quite rapidly, as a result of changes in their own job and organization.
Technology. The best processes rely heavily on technology and the Web in all aspects of the recruiting process. Technology can improve screening, increased hiring speed, cut costs, and provide the firm with the capability of hiring globally.
Integration. Recruiting processes must be integrated with other HR processes. Those recruiting processes that operate independently rather than in unison with other HR functions like relocation and compensation will produce diminished results.
Talent shortages. Although industries often face talent shortages, individual firms can actually have a surplus of candidates if they have a strong employment brand, a great referral program, and a candidate-friendly hiring approach. For example, handsome movie stars seldom have difficulty getting “dates” even when the average “Joe” can’t find a single one. Talent shortages are relative and depend on your image and what you have to offer.
Remote work options. Offering candidates remote work options dramatically increases the candidate pool. Firms that have the capability of managing candidates who work from remote locations have a distinct competitive advantage. They can attract the top performer who doesn’t live in the area, who desires working at home, or who isn’t willing to make a long commute.
Metrics and rewards impact recruiting. Every aspect of recruiting improves dramatically when managers and employees are measured, recognized, and rewarded for their contribution to recruiting. By convincing senior management and HR to place metrics and rewards on key aspects of recruiting, you send a clear message about its importance.
“I have a telephone instrument on my desk. I rarely use it. Most of the calls I get are recruiters, evil telemarketers, and wrong numbers. I mostly communicate with people using email, im, and the old reliable f2f. The office phone is as useful to me as a typewriter, Lamson tube, or telegraph key.”—
There’s a phone next to my desk. I don’t know the extension. It usually says “Incoming Call :002”. I have no idea what that means.
If you call, I won’t hear it, because I wear headphones all day. I won’t see the blinking light, because the phone’s not important enough to be placed within my field of vision. I don’t know if I have voicemail service, but if I do, I have no idea what you’ll hear as the outgoing message, and I don’t know how to retrieve messages.
I have no idea how to call the office from outside. I don’t know the phone number. I’ve worked here for 2 years and have never needed it.
“It wasn’t all romantic. I didn’t have a dorm room, so I slept on the floor in friends’ rooms, I returned coke bottles for the 5¢ deposits to buy food with, and I would walk the 7 miles across town every Sunday night to get one good meal a week at the Hare Krishna temple. I loved it. And much of what I stumbled into by following my curiosity and intuition turned out to be priceless later on.”—Steve Jobs (via unalone)
The last three weeks of the calendar year are traditionally not among the most productive on Wall Street. But if Laurence A. Tosi makes it through them, he will be at least $3.5 million richer. If he hangs on for the first two weeks of the new year, he could collect an additional $4.5 million.
According to his employment agreement, he is scheduled to start as Blackstone’s chief financial officer on Dec. 10, and if he is still employed on Dec. 31, or if he is fired without cause before then, he will receive at least $3.5 million cash. (He may start work as soon as Sept. 1, a Blackstone spokesman said.)
If he does not quit before 2008 bonuses are paid around the middle of January, he will receive Blackstone shares worth $4.5 million. But before all of that, he will collect two bundles of Blackstone shares, one as a sign-on bonus and the other to make up for pay left behind at Merrill, with a combined value of about $9 million.