How to Hire a Better Retail Sales Team

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It’s annoying.


You know, that moment when your long-awaited order has arrived and you excitedly rush to open it, only to find out that it is either broken, or not what you ordered in the first place.

In reality, finding the right people to build your retail sales team is not that different from online ordering. You don’t always know what you are really getting.

And doing it wrong, can cost you money, time, and most of all, customers.

Poor Retail Hiring Choices Cost you Money…Lots of it

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the estimated cost of a single poor hire is roughly the same as six to nine months of the annual salary for that position. Losses take the form of missed sales opportunities, time spent looking for a replacement, and training and on-boarding the new employee. All of which makes hiring smarter more important than ever.

Good Retail Sales Hires

First of all, employees are not like a replaceable Lego. You can’t (or at least you shouldn’t) just pick one up and stick them into a recently vacated slot simply because they have a pulse. The idea is to hire strategically. Find people who are teachable, motivated, and ready to work.

To do that, you need to weave data-driven metrics into your hiring process. A good example of this is questionnaires, designed to weed out poor retail hires at the very start. The best ones provide sample scenarios which allow the applicant to respond by choosing the best solution to the problem presented.

Another good tool is to create scorecards, which rank the quantifiable traits and/or outcomes you are looking for. Ask yourself, what are the core qualities that someone needs to accomplish your specific retail goals. What are you hiring this person to do?

Look for the Famous Five F’s

  • Good fit for your retail store’s needs
  • Family (creating a team)
  • Fortune (motivating them with rewards and or recognition)
  • Freedom to make certain decisions
  • Fun (creating a positive atmosphere for team members and customers)

All of which sounds great, but when you are running an independent retail store, you have about as much time as a free-falling skydiver frantically searching for a ripcord. But here’s the harsh truth: if you do not take the time to select the right people, you are going to hurtle towards one crash landing after another, wondering why your sales never rise above room temperature.

Hire Personality Over Retail Experience

Be sure to look for applicants with the personality for sales, even if they lack experience. Experience can be gained, but a flat, glassy-eyed personality is probably not going to improve over time. And, while applicants with a history of sales work are typically strong candidates, make sure to call and verify their track record. Just because they worked in sales, does not mean that they were actually good at it.

Remember too, that even the most charismatic, well-spoken applicants could be totally clueless when it comes to making a sale. It takes practice and applied skills for an employee to truly shine in retail. Once you have the right person, you can move on to motivating and training them to be better than when they started.

Recruiting the Nova Point of Sale (POS) System

Like any good team member, your point of sale system fills a critical role in your business. At Nova, we understand how the right tools can help you do and sell more. We provide the POS system you need to run your retail business right. Call 1-888-370-6682 to talk with us today. Click here to set up a demo today!

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