Here are some of the tasks that you can easily assign to a salesperson to follow up on:
One task can be to assign them the task of developing a sales achievement history and sending it to you via email. A sales achievement history should list their annual sales quota and achievement against that quota for the preceding several years.
Another homework assignment is ask a salesperson to go away and think about the opportunity that you’ve discussed with them during the interview, and then come back to you with a specific email or letter which outlines why the opportunity is a good one for them, how it matches with their skills, and why the career growth that you’re offering in your company would match with their needs.
Another easy homework assignment is to have them come back with a simple task such as completing a writing assignment or sending you samples of their previous correspondence with customers, sales presentations they’ve created, or something else that will demonstrate their communication skills. Another simple homework assignment is to have your sales candidate put together a sample sales presentation for you, and have them pitch it in order to show you how they would propose to go to work for your company.
All of these homework assignments are opportunities for you to assign work to a candidate prior to hiring them and watch how they fulfill their tasks. It’s a great way to separate the wheat from the chaff when it comes to hiring top sales performers. If a candidate is unwilling or incapable of following up on those tasks in a professional manner, then they clearly should not be considered as a candidate to go to work for your company.