What is Sales Talent Revenue Loss, and How Can You Stop It?


Most sales teams struggle with Sales Talent Revenue Loss, whether it’s due to hiring mistakes, underperformance, too few high performers or turnover.

And it costs them. The average sales team produces 7% less revenue than they should if they were fully talent optimized, and a lot of it has to do with talent challenges. Even though this is the case, it often gets overlooked by sales teams.

The good news is there are actions you can take to reduce and prevent Sales Talent Revenue Loss. You can prevent lost revenue by rethinking outdated approaches to evaluating, enabling, and retaining talent.

What is Sales Talent Revenue Loss?

Sales Talent Revenue Loss refers to revenue that your sales team has lost due to talent mistakes or lack of talent optimization. This can be due to various factors, such as hiring the wrong sales talent, poor visibility into talent improvement areas, or lack of data on what you can do to best optimize your sales talent.

Sales Talent Revenue Loss often occurs because there are few systematic ways to accurately measure how much revenue loss due to talent gaps. 

In short, most sales teams don’t have anyone to ensure that Sales Talent Revenue Loss is being accounted for.

Why is Sales Talent Revenue Loss important to measure?

It’s critical to identify where your sales team is losing revenue so that you can diagnose the problems and fill in the gaps. Not only that, by putting a dollar amount on how much talent is impacting your revenue will help you assess its impact on your business and pursue solutions to stop lost revenue.


How do you calculate Sales Talent Revenue Loss?

Calculating Sales Talent Revenue Loss on your sales team begins with reviewing your revenue systems and talent performance to identify gaps.

To start, companies might look at:

  • The revenue generated from top, middle and low performing sales reps
  • The cost that sales rep turnover has on revenue
  • The % of high performers that are on your sales team
  • The % of low performers that are on your sales team
  • The time it takes for sales reps to get their first deal
  • The effectiveness of sales rep onboarding and training


Examples of Sales Talent Revenue Loss

Organizations can inadvertently suffer from Sales Talent Revenue Loss in a variety of ways. A few of the most common include:

  • Hiring Too Many Low Performers. Hiring the wrong sales reps ultimately hurts revenue. The average low performing sales rep produced an average of 1/3rd the amount of revenue of top performing sales reps. For example, let’s say you have a sales team of 100 and 30% of your team is producing 1/3rd the amount of revenue of top performers. This acts as a revenue loss as those seats can be filled by high performing sales reps.
  • Small % Amount of High Performers. Another part of sales talent revenue loss is your sales team not hiring enough high performing talent. High performers produce an average of 8x more revenue than low performers and 3x more revenue than average performers. For example, let’s say you have a sales team of 100, and only 2% of high performers are producing tons of revenue. Increasing this high performer percentage by a couple percentage points will lead to more revenue.
  • Errors During The Talent Selection Process. Sales teams tend to take a lackadaisical approach to evaluate sales talent. They rely heavily on human intuition and bias leading to mistakes. We also tend to favor experience and referrals over actual indicators of better performance for the role. Only 61% of sales teams use a sales assessment when evaluating talent, and only 10% use a behavioral assessment. This lack of scientific approach leads to hiring mistakes ultimately resulting in lost revenue. 
  • Turnover of High Performing Sales Reps. Some sales teams are great at hiring high performers, but terrible at keeping them. A high performing rep who turns over in less than a year vs. in two or three years is lost revenue for your team. Most sales teams have a low percentage of high performing reps, so any turnover will cost you revenue in the long run.
  • Poor Data Visibility To Improve Sales Rep Performance. Most enablement teams have a limited amount of data at their disposal to truly help their sales rep perform better. This leads to missed opportunities to help sales reps onboard and improve their performance quickly. Even though enablement teams have several platforms to train and develop reps, they only use a fraction of the data and are generally missing key systems that can make a difference.


How To Prevent Sales Talent Revenue Loss

Your sales team can take several actions to stop losing revenue now and prevent future losses. 

For example:

  • Take A Scientific Approach To Sales Hiring. Using a combination of both sales assessments and behavioral assessments to better evaluate reps.  A Sales Talent Intelligence platform like Gradmor, for example, can tell you exactly what behavioral traits correlate to more revenue for your sales team and uses machine learning technology to help your sales hiring managers better assess talent.
  • Leverage Machine Learning To Improve Sales Rep Performance. New sales reps should be kept under a close eye to see what they can do to improve performance quickly. Gradmor’s Sales Enablement Intelligence solution automatically captures data from a variety of sources (like CRM, email, Productivity Tools, Conversation Intelligence, Behavioral Science, etc.) and lets you know exactly what a sales rep needs to do to improve their performance. Our sales performance confidence score will tell you whether we believe the rep is going to beat quota or not based on their sales inputs, allowing you to take a proactive approach to sales rep training and development before its too late.
  • Use AI To Spot Sales Reps At Risk For Turnover. Unexpected sales turnover is a revenue killer. When people leave, deals are less likely to close. By knowing in advance if a sales rep is likely to turnover and the reason why, your sales managers can get ahead of it and prevent it from happening. For example, Gradmor’s Sales Retention Intelligence solution tells you whether or not a sales rep is likely to turnover in the upcoming months based on many different factors (tenure, performance, behavioral profile, etc.).

Sales Talent Revenue Loss doesn’t have to be a guessing game for your sales team as long as you have the right systems and tools in place. See how Gradmor can help you take a scientific approach to talent and stop Talent Revenue Loss.