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Picture yourself as a young adult in the world today. You’ve just graduated from university and you’ve decided to pursue sales as a career.
It’s a lengthy commute to your place of work so you have plenty of time to check Instagram, send off a few snaps on Snapchat, and rack up a few likes with a “first day of work!” post on Linkedin. The responses from friends and well-wishers come back in their dozens – you’re absolutely ready for this.
You stroll into your new workplace, and what are you greeted by? Whiteboards. Whiteboards, everywhere. You can see the last update was Monday morning – it’s now Thursday. You can’t even make out the numbers on half of them thanks to the wear-and-tear, and the ink suggests the pens ran out long ago.
The standard style of whiteboards we see in the workplace today
In the corner to your left you see a few admin staff huddled together, compiling what looks like spreadsheets and reports. There’s a mixture of colours – indicators of target achievement – being set one-by-one for managers to use to “coach” their staff, even if the information is now out of date.
Is this really an environment that is going to attract, retain and motivate our sales hires of the future? Of course not!
Expectations of younger hires
We’re bombarded with messages about what Millennials/Gen Z want and what they’re like as professionals. Some of it may be true, some not, but none more so than their affinity for technology.
Millennials grew up with the evolution of dial-up into modern broadband, of the Nokia 3310 to the iPhone X, and Gen Z were born into the latter of both. There’s a high chance both generations live and breathe on social media where interaction is in real-time and “do action, receive response” is the name of the game.
Not only is this creating a world that interacts in real-time, it’s building a workforce that expects it too. The recognition for doing something good, both from management and peers, is something very few people in sales don’t desire. Yet most of our tools for monitoring and appreciating performance are decades old and haven’t moved forward with the times.
If you don’t have a strategy or processes in place to support the desires of your next hire, it might be time to start thinking about it in the near future. Otherwise you might just find that bright young spark you were so chuffed to hire recently could be looking to greener pastures before you know it.