August 10, 2020

How to Reevaluate Sales Talent in an Uncertain Market

Molly St. Louis

Molly St. Louis

Molly St. Louis
Molly St. Louis

Senior Producer

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Months into the COVID pandemic, customers are still cautious about spending, and sales cycles are more complex, due to budgetary cautions. For these reasons and a host of others, winning top sales talent that can navigate these rocky shoals has never been more vital.

In this “The Path to Revenue Confidence” video, Clari’s Chief People Officer, Laura McKinnon and VP of GTM Strategy and Operations, Kevin Fisher, discuss how to collaborate on strategic hiring and talent retainment.


According to Fisher and MacKinnon, here’s what every leader should pay attention to when it comes to recruiting talent that can weather the economic storm.

Strategize About Recruitment

Before you start scooping up top tier talent, work with your finance and HR team to understand the operating model.

When everything seems to be in flux, it's really important to be aligned and up-to-date on the hiring plan. There are huge opportunities as you're selectively hiring, so really think about the 10X positions, or positions with the highest growth potential, that you can go after. These heavy hitters can pay off in droves.

You might want to consider sourcing talent recently laid off in particular sectors. Particular sectors (like travel, for example) may have released some really quality talent, so it might be a great place for you to go selectively hire.

Strategically Consider How You Retain Talent

Talent managing isn’t just about attracting new people — it’s also about keeping the top tier folks you have in house.

For example, Clari users can use our platform not just for forecasting, but for tracking internal staff metrics, too. You can view KPIs, annual quota attainment, win rates, churn rates, slip deal rates, and out-quarter pipeline.

There's an opportunity right now also to take care of your team, especially your sales reps, with respect to quotas. The Revenue Collective recently surveyed sales leaders about evaluating or re-evaluating sales quotas. Fisher and MacKinnon definitely think that it's worthwhile, given the fact that many companies are adjusting their top line.

Deploy Talent Smartly

There are too many examples of sales reps going out there and trying to sell software and going for the hard sell, when that's really just not appropriate.At Clari, we encourage sales to lead with empathy, compassion, and an “all hands on deck” attitude. a willingness to help, and be compassionate.

Arm your sales teams with options for helping customers through this difficult time. At Clari, we developed a revenue assessment, using our core competencies, to give customers visibility into their post-COVID pipeline, including:

  • Total COVID-19 at-risk opportunities and slip rate analysis
  • Total pipeline value of late-stage deals with minimal recent rep or prospect engagement
  • All next quarter deals that can be accelerated and pulled into current quarter
  • Percentage of total pipeline idle or slipping out of the quarter
  • Automated historical run-rate modeling to identify expected revenue impact
  • Historical conversion rate analysis to identify areas for sales enablement and process optimization

We received a strong response and we made a lot of great relationships because of it. Find what that program is for your company.

The way you demonstrate your product through the sales cycle to the close is imperative. You might never meet your customer in person and then you're going to go ahead and hand off the implementation to the implementation folks and they might be implementing remotely.

Want More Revenue Confidence tips? Check them out here!


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