Why HR and Sales are exactly the same thing
Ok, so this one might need some convincing but let me take a shot...
First of all, let us distinguish between good sales people and bad sales people. Bad sales people are everywhere. I know it. You know it. And we spot them a mile off because they're always pushing product that you have no interest in and taking no time to ask questions. Spamming your inbox with "deals" that provide no value to you as a customer or as a human being. They take more time than they give great deals. Essentially, costing your business rather than adding to it. These are bad sales people. Let's extract these bad sales people from the conversation. I'm not talking about them.
By the same token, let's remove bad HR staff from the conversation. You know the ones that send ridiculous emails that do absolutely nothing, all the while refusing to deal with the huge issues affecting staff morale OR worse, the HR staff that misconstrue management or staff stories to cover up their own errors (something that bad sales people also have in common!!). And so, it's easy to correlate poor sales and poor hr but what about great sales and great hr?
Well, look at it this way, a great sales person will ask enough questions and find out just the right amount of information required to enable a judgement call, using his / her product knowledge, to recommend the best investment for your business. The great sales person uses a tremendous amount of empathy to put themselves in your shoes and see all the angles in order to help guide your decision making. This isn't as easy as it sounds and often requires handling the customer's expectations with a mix of objective facts and subjective matter.
Similarly, whether attempting to solve an issue at the office or understanding how to attract the best talent for an opening, great HR staff are getting into the minds of people to understand how they tick. What are their ambitions? What do they want to achieve short term and long term? And, how can I, personally, help them get there?
This is where both mindsets meet in the middle at the ultimate end of both roads because, when you remove all the faff, great sales people and great HR staff are doing the exact same thing... Reverse engineering people.
This is why, at GLB Commerce, I plan on having monthly meetings with every individual staff member and asking 'What can I do for you?' but then backing it up by executing on their requests to the best of my ability.