Wednesday, 16 April 2014

What Makes the Easter Bunny a Brilliant Sales Professional?

Spring is in the air and with the Easter holidays coming up this weekend I wanted to get across my thoughts on why the Easter Bunny is brilliant at selling.
Legend has it that the Easter Bunny carries coloured eggs in his basket with candy and sometimes toys to the homes of “good” children on the night before Easter Sunday which shows similarities to Santa Claus, who we also discussed as being a Great Sales Professional last year.
Masterstroke – in 1873 the Easter Bunny changed years of tradition by delivering chocolate eggs, up until this point in the UK, real eggs were used, in most cases, chicken eggs that were hard-boiled and dyed in different colours and patterns. This turned out to be a stroke of genius by the Easter Bunny and perhaps changed people’s perception of him. The Easter Bunny clearly has an entrepreneurial side and here are some further reasons behind being a brilliant Sales Professional.
Consistent High Sales – A whopping 90 million chocolate eggs are sold in the UK each year with each child on average receiving 8.8 Easter eggs a year. Sales at Easter make up 10% of UK chocolate spending for the whole year.
Smartly Dressed – You don’t see the Easter Bunny without his bow tie, he makes sure is well dressed for any occasion, albeit visiting kids at the local shopping centre or delivering eggs the night before Easter.
Territory Management – The Easter Bunny has just as much ground to cover as Santa Claus but without the help of reindeer and elves and still manages to reach all of his clients on time every year to great effect.
Preparation – Ever wonder what happens to the Easter Bunny after Easter, well he is more than likely already preparing for the following year, with billions of eggs to get ready in only 12 months I am sure he is always planning and preparing for times ahead which all great sales people do.
Ahead of the curve – The Easter Bunny is always looking to improve his eggs and bring out different varieties and flavours, he is always looking to what kids want next and this keeps him ahead of the curve.

Written by Liam Oakes
Liam is the Office Manager at Aaron Wallis and has been with the company for 3 years after having a career with the RAF; Liam has helped hundreds of Sales Professionals secure a new Sales role and ensures that Aaron Wallis runs smoothly.

Tuesday, 18 March 2014

Ten Things Recruiters and Employers Want to See in Your CV in 2014

Having worked with a number of experienced recruiters for the last few years I have come to learn what they look for in a CV, and I want to share this knowledge with candidates not just applying to roles with Aaron Wallis, but also new job roles in general. 

Here is a crucial list of the top ten things a Recruiter wants to see on your CV in 2014:

Reverse Chronological Order – When a Recruiter opens up your CV they want to see what your most-recent  job first so make sure that you lay out your CV in Reverse Chronological Order. Start with your current/most recent job first, followed by each of your previous jobs in date order.

Spelling & Grammar – If you want to make a good impression on a Recruiter then ensure that your CV does not have spelling or grammatical mistakes. Check it over thoroughly and after that get a friend to do the same to make ‘double sure’. 

A line on “what the company is, and does”A Recruiter wants to know if you’re relevant for their role and can’t always tell straight away just by the name of your employer.  Take a line to explain what the company does, the products and services provided and the industries that it serves.

Links to Social Media – It’s great to have links to social media on your CV but make sure they show you in a ‘good light’! The last thing a Recruiter wants to see is a potential candidate somewhat ‘under the cosh’ and partying at weekends!

Key Achievements – This is probably the most important part of writing your CV. Your key achievements need to be engaging to demonstrate that you are a competent achiever in your current and previous roles. This is where you can really sell yourself but be sure to have sufficient evidence to back up all claims at interview.

Paragraph with Bullet Points – A Recruiter wants to know what you have done in a previous role that could relate to the role you are currently applying for.  However, at the same time, they don’t want to read paragraph after paragraph full of waffle. Write a simple paragraph on your role with bullet points for your key achievements and make it stand out.

Explain Gaps in CV – Firstly, you need to be honest when it comes to gaps in your CV; acknowledging and explaining a gap in your CV won’t harm your chances, however, lying about it most definitely will. Whether it is illness, travelling, redundancy or caring for a family member, be positive with your approach. An unexplained gap is a warning sign to a Recruiter, and your application could be disregarded straight away.

Stand out Hobbies – Be specific with your hobbies and don’t just use generic sayings like “socialising with friends."  Try to tailor your hobbies to the role that you are applying for; for instance, if you are applying for a team leader role, and you have captained a team before, then it may help to note this as it shows your leadership abilities.

Correct Contact info & Best Time to Talk – There is nothing worse for a Recruiter than thinking they have come across the perfect candidate only to find that the contact number on the CV or a number that is ‘dead’.  Therefore, keep your CV updated with a current contact information and also note a best time to talk so you don’t get hassled during work hours.

Experience for the Job – Finally, it’s no good having done all the above to your CV if you don’t have the correct experience for the role. In almost every advert a Recruiter will have detailed prerequisite skills and experience necessary to apply for the role.  So, make sure that you’re meeting the minimum required criteria before applying, or at least refer to why you feel that you are right in a covering note.  Failing to do this will mean that you will not make the shortlist. 

Written by Liam Oakes
Liam is the Office Manager at Aaron Wallis and has been with the company for 3 years after having a career with the RAF; Liam has helped hundreds of Sales Professionals secure a new Sales role and ensures that Aaron Wallis runs smoothly.

Tuesday, 11 March 2014

Make Sure You Do Not Ask Inappropriate Interview Questions at Interview

Although an Employers’ aim is to gain important information during an interview, some questions can be inappropriate and even illegal. 

Although in our experience most illegal questions are asked through ignorance they can still cause embarrassment or have significant legal implications. 

There are four kinds of unlawful discrimination – direct, indirect, victimisation and harassment – and, in this article I want to focus on the first two of these - direct discrimination and indirect discrimination.

Direct discrimination is a lot more obvious and is always illegal. 

However, indirect discrimination can be a lot more subtle and illegal interview questions with underlying discriminatory suggestions can often be asked quite innocently.  Some examples of this could be things like “What did your parents do for a living?”, “How many sick days did you take last year?” or "How far is your commute?"

Whilst not an exhaustive list of every illegal interview question you may find it useful to follow this link for some further examples of questions that Employers are not allowed to ask -
To conclude and to lessen the risk of asking inappropriate or illegal questions, we recommend that companies adopt a formal interview form that has been checked by a HR expert and to use this as the outline for interviewing across all levels.  

Written by Liam Oakes
Liam is the Office Manager at Aaron Wallis and has been with the company for 3 years after having a career with the RAF; Liam has helped hundreds of Sales Professionals secure a new Sales role and ensures that Aaron Wallis runs smoothly.


Wednesday, 5 March 2014

Why James Bond Would Make a Great Sales Professional

Having recently watched James Bond’s SkyFall (again) it got me thinking how James Bond would make a great sales professional, his confidence, professionalism and ability to get the job done under any circumstance could make him a great Field Salesman.

Bond would have a licence to sell and here’s why he would be the best in his field:

Preparation – He is prepared for any occasion, each mission planned from the very beginning. He always has a Plan B in case things don’t go his way and would use this same preparation with every sales meeting, knowing how he was going to close before he stepped foot in the door but have a contingency plan in place for any given moment.

Looks the Part – Bond takes pride in his appearance, his dress is immaculate no matter the occasion. He would be the sharpest dressed person in the room and would instantly impress a potential client. It’s always a good start to a meeting when you walk in with a fresh pressed suit on; it instils a winning mentality and confidence. 

Confident – Bond always remains calm and confident until victory no matter what obstacles are put in his way and always gets the girl no matter how much they try to resist. Whether it be what he is wearing or how he approaches women, Bond’s confidence would come across in any sales meeting and each client would be putty in his hands.

Prepared to take risks – Life is a balance of taking risks and being cautious but Bond takes more risks than most. He makes his own luck by taking calculated risks, he doesn’t worry about rejection and he steps out of his comfort zone but often comes out on top. As they say nothing ventured, nothing gained. Bond makes his own luck.

Ahead of the curve – Bond always has the best gadgets, whether it is an exploding pen or a laser cutting wrist watch he is always ahead of the curve. As a sales professional Bond would no doubt have the latest I-Pad and smartphone ready for any sales meeting or reacting to social media.

A Winner – Bond has a winning mentality and never settles for second best, he always comes out on top. He would be the example to follow within any sales team and would be an inspirational figure ready to close any deal on the front line.

Written by Liam Oakes
Liam is the Office Manager at Aaron Wallis and has been with the company for 3 years after having a career with the RAF; Liam has helped hundreds of Sales Professionals secure a new Sales role and ensures that Aaron Wallis runs smoothly.