Heard about a fascinating-sounding lecture at London’s Institute of Directors. Several suited industrial captains were asked if any had ever appointed a new sales manager. Almost all put their hands up to say they had. Next question; ‘did you promote your best sales person into the role?’ and virtually all the hands remained held high.
“Well, you were all wrong!” came the reposte from the stage, which saw all the assembled puffed-out chests get put out of kilter.
The point was, that you should categorise your salesguys into bands. The achievers, traditionally grouped into one, should actually be split. There are those that tend to be on target or just above, and those that have wild spikes – like unheard of 200%ers.
You should only take your sales management, from the former band. The idea being, that the latter (the higher performers on paper) are not actually management potential. The reasons are, to get where they are, they have more than likely pulled all sorts of stunts. Probably including shafting both their colleagues, and their customers, leaving trails of sailing close to the wind and a string of broken promises and a flotilla of shovels trawling in their wake.