How many times have you heard that cry come up from some poor, beleaguered sales manager who just had a rep quit. For the sake of the discussion let’s assume that the rep who left was in the same town where the company and manager are.
Here’s a list of people and places where you might find sales candidates:
1. Other business owners or sales managers you might know.
2. Your customers. You probably don’t want to hire a competitor but there will be other salespeople selling into these accounts.
3. Friends/acquaintances (your network) who might know salespeople.
4. Salespeople who may have called on you.
6. Sales training companies in the area. (One of my favorites.)
7. Networking groups.
8. Associations. In Minneapolis for example there is the Professional Sales Association.
9. Depending on what terms the sales rep who quit left the company he or she might know of some people.
10. Colleges that have a sales degree program. (Again, in Mpls. there is St. Catherine’s.)
There is no reason why I didn’t include recruiters. There are solid, reputable recruiters everywhere. I just happen to be a stubborn German who loves challenges and finding a good rep on my own is my idea of a fun challenge. Obviously, you have to balance how fast you need to hire someone vs. the time it will take to find a good candidate. My suggestion is to hit the 10 options above hard and fast for 3 weeks and if nobody surfaces then find a recruiter.
The Final Thought: If you think hiring sales professionals is expensive try hiring amateurs.