Have you just been put in charge of growing a successful sales force? Whether you’ve inherited a team or need to hire on your own, follow these recommendations from the sales professionals to ensure you have a winning sales force capable of meeting and exceeding your sales objectives.

Most professionals will agree that ninety percent of sales is relationship and trust building between the sales representative and client or prospect.  When interviewing applicants for sales positions, it’s critical to not only look at their past success, but their tenure with past companies. Hiring mistakes are very expensive. On boarding, training and developing a successful sales force is a costly endeavor.  Personality and ethics tests and exercises have become increasingly popular.  Work together with your human resources department to determine what resources are available to assist you in the hiring process.

Once you’ve assembled a sale force, it is imperative that their goals and rewards be very clearly articulated in writing. Product and service training are imperative. Your sales representative will not only be marketing your product or service, but also the integrity of the entire company. Have them spend at least one week at headquarters to fully understand the scope of operations. They’ll be a strong, more ell equipped and loyal sales force as a result. It’s a big investment with an even bigger return. Consider incremental incentives in the form of Ticketmaster gift cards for events and concerts in their geographical area.

The role of regional sales managers is crucial. This person is the sales representative’s point of contact with the entire company. The regional sales manager should be thoroughly versed in the company’s products, ethical beyond reproach, and serve as both a coach and mentor to the individual sales representatives to assist them in reaching their sales goals. Be upfront, honest and address positive and negative issues as they arise. Share, with discretion, mistakes learned with the entire sales for. Best of luck to you as your build your winning sales team.