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Ask more questions to get the real scoop on a prospective hire

SmartPulse — our weekly nonscientific reader poll in SmartBrief on Sales — tracks feedback from sales managers and executives. We run the poll question each Wednesday in our e-newsletter.

Last week, we asked: Have you ever hired a sales representative, only to have that person decide to stay with his or her employer?

  • Yes: 53.85%
  • No: 46.15%

The near 50-50 split in this week’s results is exactly what I expected, as this happens more often. That’s the reason as part of the recruiting, interviewing and negotiating process, you have to be cognizant that the sales representative might be interviewing with the intent of competitive research versus making a change. When you really like a candidate and the timing is right in the courtship, ask whether you can speak with some folks at his or her company. See what reaction you receive — it should tell you the person’s true intent.

Stephen Pia is the founder of COACH MEdia and a sales trainer and coach.