This preview of Mr. Stretch's Sales & Marketing 2.0 Conference keynote on October 18 was contributed by Lisa Gschwandtner, Editorial Director of Selling Power. Get more information about Callidus Software at the Sales & Marketing 2.0 Conference.

Creating and keeping a great team is a constant pressure for sales leaders. But finding the right candidates – ones who have the right personality, skills, and experience to engage prospects, uncover new opportunities, and provide value – can be an incredibly frustrating experience.

It sounds like science fiction, but you don’t need a team of scientists to pull this off. To start, ask yourself a simple question:

What makes my top performing salespeople so successful?

Believe it or not, many sales leaders have a lot of trouble answering this question – and that’s the biggest stumbling block to sustaining success in a sales team. After all, if you don’t know what makes your most successful sales reps tick, then what hope do you have of ever being able to replicate their great performance, or hire others like them?

Start making an effort to figure out what’s in the DNA of your greatest salespeople. What do they have in common? Is it behavior? Education? Methodology? Really think about what sets them apart. Once you identify those attributes, you can match them to your recruitment profile.

I’m looking forward to discussing this topic in much greater detail during my keynote address, “Do Salespeople Dream of Electric Sheep? Creating & Replicating Excellent Salespeople” at the Sales & Marketing 2.0 Conference on October 17-18, in San Francisco. I'll be sharing best practices, as well as how to make the most of current sales performance management tools and solutions out there.

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