Left Handed Astronaut

Friday, May 12, 2017
 
I recently watched the Ridley Scott film “The Martian,” which stars Matt Damon as an Astronaut stranded on Mars?
 
This got me thinking about ‘Left-handed astronauts’ in the Sales industry.  This may not be a term you’re familiar with, so let me explain... For all practical purposes, there are very few trained astronauts in the world; there are only around 6 in space today and NASA, the largest astronaut employer, only has 46 currently qualified and even fewer left-handed ones (4 in total, presumably). 
 
'Left Handed Astronauts’
It is a metaphor used by Recruiters to identify the sometimes unrealistic expectations of a client company.

Throughout my years of finding top Senior Sales professionals to meet the needs of my clients today, I have worked with a number of businesses who had a very specific set of boxes that they felt needed to be checked, when looking for their ‘perfect’ candidate, in some cases more than 15 boxes. They would not even consider an interview if all the boxes hadn’t been checked. 

It’s important to remember that while a perfect candidate would be ideal, a perfect human being does not exist.
 
I have a confession to make
 
'I am a perfectionist'
 
There I said it.
 
My wife often teases me that I am a perfectionist and like little things to be just so, but perfect I am not and nor is anyone else.
 
The absolutely perfect candidate doesn’t exist, many people embellish their experience on their resume (63% can contain lies or discrepancies) to appear perfect and interview questions can be predictable, with the interviewee having a predetermined set of answers to expected questions.

Here is what you must do to save yourself a recruitment headache

If you want to find the best Sales professionals for your business, you must be open to imperfections.  Look at your current, most successful employees and try to remember how they started and how they have evolved and flourished.  
 
What are their main qualities and flaws?  
 
This way you are much more likely to be open to finding the perfect, imperfect candidate for your business.

I’d love to hear your thoughts or if you would like to have a brief chat just reply to this email, I would be happy to share some additional information to ensure you attract the best of the best.
 
Best Regards
 
Shaun Barton
 
P.S. In case you were wondering about Mr Damon - he’s a right-handed astronaut, AND $25mill (his fee for the film) still doesn’t get you a left-handed one.