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Sales Hiring & The Top 2% Myth

Hire Them Today and Lose Money Fast!

One hiring method that you often see in the world of sales is "looking for the 2%-ers."

This is when a company will look only to hire the top 2% of professional salespeople.

The reasons for doing this are understandable. You only want the best people working for you. Your bottom line is to make the most sales you possibly can, and what better way to do that than with the very best in the business selling for you?

It makes sense, right?

No. Actually, it doesn’t.

Although the reasoning behind this mentality might sound alright on paper, it actually rarely works in any industry.

Having a basketball team with five all-star players

is not going to lead to a healthy group dynamic.​

The 2 Reasons Why the Successful Sales Managers DON'T Look for the 2%-ers

1. You Can't Determine Who the 2% Actually Are

It’s true. The most basic first step is almost impossible to achieve.


You don't have the resources required to FIND the 2%.

Most recruiting practices do an insufficient job at identifying who the 2% are because those details are not easy to come by. If the 2% were that easy to find, everybody would be lining up to hire them already.

2. The 2% Mentality Goes Against the Principles of Team Selling

If you're looking towards the future of the sales market, you want to be practicing team selling (something which I've covered here: [Learn about team selling].

Looking to hire only the top 2% of salespeople actively disrupts the team selling work ethic.

If by some mysterious way you are able to locate the top 2%, they got there by themselves. I'm willing to bet that they would not be keen on the idea of working with others on the same sale, since their reputation and confidence level is so high.

But ok, let's say you do get them to work together.

There's one thing I am absolutely certain I can guarantee you.

The results will be a train wreck.

Having a basketball team with five all-star players is not going to lead to a healthy group dynamic. Each member will think that they have the most to offer. This will cause them to be unwilling to listen to what the others have to say. This will lead to hostility and resentment, which in turn will lead to a loss of sales.

Not every salesperson in your firm is going to be a legend.

And you know what?

That is OK.

Thank you
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Interested in learning more about a Team Selling strategy for your sales organization? Read our manifesto. Or, you can learn from other sales leaders by joining our Team Selling Strategies LinkedIn Group or listen to our podcast.

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