Posts Tagged ‘psychometric assessment’

Why Do We Fail to Understand Salespeople Are Multi-Dimensional?

Salespeople are human beings.  Yet so often those in business fail to accept that human beings are not just one dimension but rather multi-dimensional.

In working with organizations as well as with top performing sales performers, I hear about how one assessment was used to determine the salesperson’s potential. Using just one assessment especially one that is neither statistically reliable or valid is a disservice to the organization and especially to the salesperson.

As in life, one size does not fit all when it comes to clothing, assessments or salespeople.

For example, the DISC Index is a great tool to understand how the individual communicates and reflects his or her behaviors.  For salespeople who understand DISC, they can leverage that knowledge to improve their relationship building as well as sales conversations with sales leads to centers of influence.

The Values Index is another tool that looks to what a person values or what intrinsically motivates that individual. This psychometric assessment tool helps both the salesperson and those in sales management to align the sales job description to the salesperson’s motivation.

Today there is much discussion about emotional intelligence.  Again, this is another dimensional of each salesperson.  Salespeople who are top performers leverage their emotional intelligence to increase sales.

Read Jeb Blount’s book, Sales EQ, to understand emotional intelligence within the sales process.

Finally, knowing the talents of the individual is also necessary.  What I know is most people know with far greater clarity what they don’t do well instead of what they do well. My favorite psychometric tool is the Attribute Index which utilizes the work of Dr. Hartman and the science of Axiology.

Possibly now is the time to expand one’s beliefs about people and recognize each human being is multi-dimensional.  Remember one size does not fit all in clothing or when it comes to measuring salespeople.

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How Sales Coaching May Lead to this Unintentional Result

Sales coaching continues to grow from internal coaches, sales managers to the hiring of external coaches.  Yet quite often this unintentional result happens as I was reminded by this statement made by a respected colleague:

Prescription without diagnosis is malpractice.

How can any professional coach worth his or her weight prescribe a solution without using a proven diagnostic tool is counter intuitive. To take this Captain Wing It action lessens the overall proven effectiveness of sales coaching, executive coaching, leadership coaching or business coaching. This statement is also true for workplace culture consulting to talent management.



Imagine for a moment going to the doctor with a headache.  The doctor listens to your complaint and says “you need immediate brain surgery.”  No tests had been ordered. Not even a thorough examination was undertaken.  He listened and then prescribed.  Probably you would have walked or even ran out of his office seeking a second opinion.

When speaking with sales leads who are seeking sales coaching, I explain my coaching process and how it always begins with an assessment to better diagnosis the real problems and not the symptoms many others solve. Sometimes the sales lead does not want the assessment and that is okay because his or her refusal tells me he or she is not a right fit for my coaching approach.

Without the use of a proven diagnostic tool such as a psychometric assessment, the coach is assuming what he or she is hearing is accurate. Additionally the lack of a diagnostic tool weakens or totally eliminates the coaching plan and supporting process.  This lack of clarity dooms the desired results for both the coachee and the coach.

Read about how many diagnostic tools (psychometric assessments) are not proven in this LinkedIn Pulse Posting.

For example, one of the questions I ask any coaching sales lead is “If you were being interviewed for a job and asked to share your strongest talent, what would you say?”  I wait for the response and then ask this second question “How do you truly know you do that well because my experience is 98.7% of the people I have coached do not know what they do well?”

The second question is the one that justifies why my sales coaching process is different from many others.  So if you are considering hiring a coach internally or externally, it just may make sense to begin with a proven diagnostic (psychometric assessment) to ensure your coach is not committing malpractice.

Download 78-core-talents-self-eval-dl to self rank your own 78 talents and take advantage of a special offer.

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Employee Engagement Requires a MRI not Just an X-Ray

Employee engagement is still dismal. Regardless if it is one-third or one-fourth of employees being actively engaged, those just engaged or actively disengaged are still way too many. The profit faucet continues to drip, drip, drip if not gush lost dollars.

employee-engagementMany SMBs are now beginning to recognize the importance of using proven diagnostic tools such psychometric assessments to improve employee engagement. Unfortunately there is still a mentality of scarcity because the belief is one X-Ray assessment or the same assessment is satisfactory for hiring to professional role development.

Nothing could be further from the truth!

For example, a X-Ray is good for taking an initial assessment of a person’s health concern. However, to further clarify what ails the individual may require a MRI.  This second assessment digs much deeper to reveal additional helpful information.

Psychometric assessments are much like the MRI.  Each assessment provides another aspect of the individual.  Now the SMB owner or the HR executive has much greater clarity as to where there are performance gaps within the individual.

Since people are multi-dimensional, how they are assessed should reflect these multi-dimensions.  To use only one assessment is like employing only an X-Ray.

Here is the employee engagement MRI I recommend when looking to assess new hires to promoting loyal employees.

Attribute Index – This is the most reliable and accurate psychometric assessment in the market place. IMHO The Attribute Index is not a personality test. No, this tool assesses how people make decisions both external and internal; their temperament based upon their biases and 78 core attributes or talents.

DISC Index – Others view our behaviors.  When we understand how others perceive our behaviors, we can make the necessary adjustments provided we want to take those actions. This is a great tool to enhance communications.

Values  Index – Human beings have inherent motivators. Having clarity around those motivators helps us understand how to better motivate ourselves and well as others.

Emotional Intelligence – Research continues to suggest that effective leadership reflects higher capacity of emotional intelligence.  Many individuals fail to develop and leverage this leadership skill.

As medical diagnostic tools have improved so have employee engagement tools.  If you wish to have a highly engaged workforce culture, consider putting together a plan to assess and to develop your employees.

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Leanne Hoagland-Smith is THE People and Process Problem Solver. She supports forward thinking leadership in bridging the gaps between the two problems restricting strategic business growth – people and processes. Leanne can be reached at 219.508.2859 central time USA.  Follow her on Twitter or check out her profile on LinkedIn.

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Knowing the Motivation to Sell Is the First Key In Hiring Top Sales Performers

motivation-to-sellHiring sales people is very much like a crap shoot.  Finding those top sales performers you require to increase sales is even more of a gamble. What might make your hiring easier is to discover the applicant’s desire or motivation to sell. Yet where do you find that in your hiring process? Even with the strongest resumes and references, the motivation to sell is hidden from those in sales management.

So what can a time strapped small business owner to sales manager do to discover and then separate those top sales performers (the red jackets)  from everyone else (gray suits)?

Have you ever heard of the Values Index?

This quick psychometric and talent assessment can quickly determine if the applicant has the motivation to sell through the identification of 7 key dimensions of value and motivation.

The History

This very reliable psychometric assessment is built upon the works of German philosopher and psychologist Eduard Spranger and American psychologist Gordon Allport. How this assessment differs from other talent assessments is it is concerned about people’s convictions. Allport believed an individual’s personality is founded upon people’s values or basic convictions they hold about what is and is not of real importance in life. He used Spranger’s findings to outline six major value types.

  • Aesthetic – Form and harmony
  • Economic – Usefulness
  • Political – Power and control (leadership)*
  • Social – Love of people
  • Religious – Unity
  • Theoretical – Search for knowledge, truth

*Spranger replaced Political with Individualistic to keep the six dimensions.

The Present

Innermetrix realized that Political from Spranger and Individualistic from Allport need not be mutually exclusive. Also, to comply with EEOC, mention of religion is not favorable.  The publisher Innermetrix has substituted regulatory with religious. The present Values Index has seven dimensions instead of six.

  • Aesthetic (Original) – Balance, Form and harmony
  • Altruistic (Spranger’s Social) – Humanitarian efforts
  • Economic (Original) – Economic or practical returns
  • Individualistic (Allport’s) – Independence and uniqueness (Self-Leadership)
  • Political (Spranger’s) – Control or have influence (Leadership)
  • Regulatory (Spranger’s religious) – Establish order, routine and structure
  • Theoretical (Original)- Search for knowledge, learning and understanding

The Results

From the works of others and myself, an economic driver in the top 50% indicates the motivation to sell is present. Additionally those applicants with a high altruistic driver and a low economic driver may be more concerned about building relationships and earning the sale is third or fourth on the list of their own motivational needs.

Having an economic driver in the lower 50% does not mean the salesperson cannot be a top sales performer. What it does mean is the salesperson must be aware of that lower value of dimension.

Also if the culture of the organization is not forward thinking or toxic, even salespeople with the highest economic drivers will not be successful. This assessment helps to quickly identify the potential of hiring tops sales performers respective to the motivation to sell.

This assessment tool, the Values Index, like many other assessments benefits when debriefed by a certified consultant.  Even though value type assessments are available for free, employing these “freebies” may be harmful to the organization without understanding the results from both an individual and organizations (team) perspective.

Remember, hiring is an investment when done well and a cost when not done well. 

Making an investment of $100 to even $250 ensures you are hiring those with a motivation to sell is money well spent.

Invest Just $97 and Save Thousands by Identifying The Motivation to Sell

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Leanne Hoagland-Smith is THE People and Process Problem Solver. She supports forward thinking leaders in bridging the gaps between the two problems restricting strategic business growth – people and processes. Leanne can be reached at 219.508.2859 central time USA.  Follow her on Twitter or check out her profile on LinkedIn.

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