This is an excerpt from our 17 Top Sales Trends for 2017.

The right sales technology won’t have much of an impact without the right salespeople to use it. It’s easy for sales leaders to follow the same old script of recruiting new candidates for their teams from other successful sales organizations; after all, people with experience in sales are usually easier to onboard. And while taking actions like branding for appeal are critical elements of sales recruiting, there are other ways to search for, attract and retain talent in this competitive space.

Kevin Vanes, vice president of sales at Sigstr, suggests that finding the best candidates should take sales leaders far outside of their comfort zones.

headshot “Sales leaders will be forced to go down an unconventional hiring path.”
Kevin Vanes | Vice President of Sales at Sigstr

Today’s practice of shuffling the same talent from company to company doesn’t do much to introduce new ideas into sales. “There will always be a few companies we admire and try to hire out of,” said Vanes, “but that’s inefficient and unsustainable.” Instead, leaders should look outside of conventional companies and roles to discover the kinds of talent that could invigorate their existing teams.

What next?

Technology has completely changed how people work, but the basic traits of successful salespeople remain the same. “Look for someone who’s been successful in their careers, people who can communicate in a meaningful way, people who aren’t afraid of hard work and are coachable,” said Vanes. “It’s so easy to get caught up in what the typical sales persona looks like, but there’s a real opportunity to expand beyond that.”

So, where should sales leaders search for their future rockstars? Pretty much anywhere, Vanes said. “Two people on my team – including my most successful sales development rep – came from high-end retail,” he said. “People have to know how to strike up a conversation, discover what customers are looking for, and deliver it.”

Want more? Get our guide to all the 17 top sales trends for 2017 here.