You can’t always get what you want.

This thought occurred to me while my wife and I were at the Rolling Stone concert last month. We  frequently hear the following from hiring mangers: “We want an A player – 15 years software sales experience, stable job history, hunter mentality, avg w2’s of 275k, great presentational skills and commands the room.”  Everybody wants an A player, but few companies do an honest assessment to determine if their opportunity and company are an A level. In this market, it takes an A level company and opportunity to attract an A player.

Some common traits of A level companies:

  • 30 % growth quarter over quarter
  • Technology that is a need to have vs a like to have.
  • Position details are A level – territory, comp plan, accelerators etc
  • Do you offer equity as part of your comp pkg or RSU’s
  • Your top 25% AE’s are making 350k or more.
  • Experienced executive team and board members – proven background with high growth companies.
  • Does your hiring process attract A level talent.
  • In the interview process does your hiring manager actually tell the candidate why they should join your company

Does your company exhibit at least 5 of these traits? If so, let’s get you an A player. If not, be realistic in your talent acquisition. Be open to hiring an AE that has the potential to become an A player, or an AE that was, but has recently had a bad experience.  How do you find these diamonds in the rough? Partner with a seasoned search firm and like Mick says “you can’t always get what you want but if you try sometimes you’ll get want you need.”