Why Newly Promoted Sales Leaders Rise to Their Level of Incompetence

By Kelsey Peusch

Whether you are a successful top performer seeking a senior management position or you’re already a senior Sales Leader looking to hand pick your next protégé, there is something you should know. It’s been statistically proven that the best sales representatives won’t make the best sales leaders.


All too often we encounter sales leadership teams yearning for the skills and structure required to elevate their team’s performance. We are talking about sophisticated, highly educated, teams of men and women, the majority of which were top performers in their respective organizations.

The jarring realization, one we must often share with our clients, is that the skills required to be a high performing seller are different than the skills required to lead high performing sales teams. Seems obvious, no? Unfortunately, we see organizations seeking to retain top talent by rewarding them with upward mobility with little regard to skill set.

This anomaly is known as The Peter Principle which presupposes this fact: “If organizations promote the best people at their current jobs, then organizations will inevitably promote people until they’re no longer good at their jobs. In other words, organizations manage careers so that everyone ‘rises to the level of their incompetence’. ”

Sales is no different and here is the proof.

Continue Reading

Jockeying for Sales Talent in a Job Shopping World

By Per Torgersen

4.6, 4.5, 4.3, 4.2, 4.1.  These may look like judges’ scores in an athletic competition, but these figures actually represent a sampling of recent US unemployment percentages, which have been steadily declining for some time.  The most recent unemployment rate of 4.1% is the lowest in 17 years.  While this is encouraging for job seekers, it is worrisome for employers seeking to attract and retain strong sales talent to hit their revenue targets.

Headlines like these…

“Employer’s Hustle to Retain Job-Hopping Workers”

“Companies Seeing a Significant Increase in Employee Turnover Rates”

“US Workforce Expected to Experience Massive Shift” (thousands of baby boomers retiring daily)

… are forcing employers to re-think their attraction and retention strategies.

For those wanting to attract employees with bachelor’s degrees or Millennials, the situation is even worse, with unemployment for college grads only at 2.0% as of October 2017, and Millennials (and now Generation Z) coming into the labor market with very different expectations regarding their jobs and careers than previous generations.

Continue Reading

5 Steps to Sales Onboarding Success

By Joni Santos

How can you design an effective onboarding program for sellers that accelerates their time to productivity, while reducing employee turnover? In our recent blog post, the Case for Sales Onboarding, we highlighted the sobering data around seller turnover, departure costs, recruiting costs, lost revenue, and new seller ramp time. We also emphasized the importance of establishing desired outcomes and milestones for a seller onboarding program, defining success according to five C’s: Clarity, Connections, Comprehension, Confidence, and Contribution. 

As each ‘C’ builds upon the last, you can implement them as you would follow steps in a process, recognizing that the journey may not always be clean and linear.  In this post, we expand on how to apply the 5 C's of Sales Onboarding Success.

Continue Reading

Why Leaders Are Failing At Managing Their Generationally Diverse Sales Teams

By Erica Abt

Have you ever heard an experienced sales manager complain about the “young sellers” on their team who demand inordinate attention and TLC, lack accountability, and quickly jump ship to a new and exciting roles elsewhere?

The topic of Millennials and their prevalence in the work place is not uncommon and while many seasoned professionals complain about their insurgence, I rarely hear of helpful tips or useful recommendations of how to successfully manage these “odd creatures”.

Continue Reading

Economy Finally Bouncing Back? Buh–Bye… The Coming Exodus of Sales People

By Per Torgersen

It is mid-2013 and the tenuous, yet positive, economic indicators keep coming: housing prices up by highest level in 7 years, positive job growth in the private sector extends streak to 40 months, unemployment continues to fall. For many of our clients, these indicators present a double-edged sword.  First, the good - there is finally some growth and more strength and security in their business.

Continue Reading

Developing Sales Talent: Art, Science or Theory?

By David Szen

Regardless of your own answer to the question let’s face the facts.  If you stop everything you are doing right now and call 100 sales reps across a diverse industry pool and ask the following questions you WILL get the following answers:

Continue Reading
New call-to-action
New Call-to-action