One of the most common challenges we hear is how hard it is to find quality sales people. This is a common issue, not just to media as competition to hire talented sellers is fierce across all industries. In radio and television ad sales, there are often more obstacles due to non-competes, poor compensation practices and overall lack of positioning companies to potential employees.
At Media Staffing Network, we help media companies hire sellers, managers and several other business oriented positions. Since 1993 we have worked with broadcasters to help them attract and retain top talent to help them achieve their revenue goals. Once consolidation began, stations were faced with not being able to hire from the competition as they now owned much of the competition. And in many cases, non-competes or contracts eliminated the ability to hire from ‘across the street’. In large markets with plentiful labor pools, it can create a challenge, but for smaller markets it is definitely a major issue.
In our work with media companies in addition to our own careers in broadcasting, we recognize the importance of having a strong sales team. We recognize that if someone has good contacts and strong sales characteristics, they can probably learn how to sell advertising. Unfortunately, many broadcast managers feel they need to only hire from media when in reality, there is a much larger group to pull from in any community.
In our practice, we work with managers in local markets to really research and know who is out there in their community who can sell, build relationships and bring fresh ideas to the table so we can start ‘courting’ them to consider joining a broadcast sales team when they are ready for a career change. Our advice is to go after many of the talented non-media sellers who have an aptitude for learning and wanting to grow in their careers.
For many years, P1 Learning and Media Staffing Network have discussed how we can work together to better serve our clients. With their development of their P1 Plus program we have hit a winning combination that helps many broadcasters solve a major challenge. Our new motto is “MSN finds them and P1 Plus trains them!”
We love that the program includes actual classes, exercises, and feedback in both a live and online format. Managers can assess how their new hires are grasping the information and moving along in the training process. In eight (8) weeks, a new hire in sales should be well versed in how to do their job, how to position their products and have a strong base of knowledge of broadcast and digital sales. The hands-on style of the P1 Plus program allow the instructors to see how students are doing and can jump in when they see someone struggling.
Those broadcasters who are not open to new ideas, won’t consider hiring ‘out of the box’ are going to be far behind in the future. It is imperative to their bottom lines to attract, hire and retain the best talent they can. With tenure of sellers expected to turn over much more often now and in the future, a smart manager needs to invest in the right tools and training to use not only as a recruitment tool but to get new hires ramped up and productive as soon as possible.
I am thrilled with our partnership and know that together, Media Staffing Network and P1 Learning can deliver the right team for success.
Laurie Kahn | President & Founder | Media Staffing Network