Finding Top Sales Talent is Difficult for Everyone

Moving Beyond the Difficulties of Sales Recruiting

In good economies and bad, finding top talent is difficult. Think it's any easier for Microsoft, Facebook, Amazon, or Google? Sure, they have distinct competitive advantages, but it still takes teams of recruiters interviewing around the clock to recruit and hire staff even for well branded growing organizations.

If I’m wavering about hiring someone, I think, “What if someone else offered this person a job? Would I let him or her get away?”
— Mark McCormack

What Should You do When You're Tired of Recruiting?

Realize Everyone is Facing Talent Shortages

No one company has access to the best talent available on demand.

Other hiring managers, like you, are looking for the best and the brightest and coming up with fewer choices than they initially expected. If you're in this situation today, realize you're not alone.

Almost all hiring managers face talent shortages and must work around these obstacles. Getting discouraged and frustrated won't make it any easier.


Remember You Will Be Able to Recover from Bad Hires

Building a strong team has never been more important. But you won't do it perfectly.

You'll make a few bad hires.

Then you'll go through a phase of over-correcting for your previous hiring mistakes. Eventually, you'll get on a roll and wonder why things were ever so difficult in the first place.

Just when things start to seem easy, you'll become overconfident and make another hiring mistake.

The important thing is to learn from your mistakes and not let them wear you down. No matter how bad your mistakes, you will learn and improve.

Eventually, you'll become very good at hiring, but you'll never achieve perfection. Hiring will always be a messy endeavor.

Hire People Not Paper

You can't hire the right people if you start to believe that people are their resumes. Sure, history and track records of success are important. But what if you were evaluated for a job based primarily on your resume?

Would there be some factors missing from consideration? Would your choice of font and format truly represent you as an employee?

interview paper people

Remember that hiring is more than evaluating paper resumes.

Humans are complex. Resumes are snapshots, summaries, and abridged versions of career histories.

They can easily under or over represent their owners. Don't hire paper, hire people.

Keep Moving Forward

Find ways to broaden your talent pool. Brainstorm alternative profiles that might produce suitable candidates who can deliver the outcomes you need for your next hire.

List workarounds that you can use to compensate for missing skills sets. Interview candidates who might seem a touch questionable to you.


Go to networking events and trade shows and look for possible recruits. Think bigger, dig deeper, open your mind to the possibility that your next hire might come in an unexpected package.

Without a doubt, hiring the right team can make or break your ability to drive results. When the search drags on and things get difficult, you'll need to persevere.

One way or another, you'll have to become resourceful and creative.

You'll need to find ways to hire the best talent you can for your team so you can hit your goals.

This might require persuading colleagues, narrowing down top requirements, broadening recruitment channels, changing your strategy, or simply putting one foot in front of the other.

But you'll need to find ways to cross the finish line even after everyone else has given up.