When people are made to feel like individuals instead of just cogs in a machine, engagement and productivity are likely to improve. This is an ideal situation for sales talent management and retention, but not all leaders may know the best ways to achieve these outcomes. Proper sales onboarding that focuses on personal needs, interests and identity have received such positive feedback in some cases that top sales research and management entities are now recommending this approach as a standard practice.

HR Zone reported that the London Business School's top academic influences were calling on sales on-boarding leaders to re-evaluate their current integration and training methods. The source stressed that adding more individuality and attention to each new staff member resulted in better personal interactions with the organization as a whole, making personnel more likely to stay with a company for the long-term. As in any professional setting, ensuring longevity of candidates and proper engagement levels are critical for talent retention, and focusing on these elements from the moment a person starts a new job will help establish a good relationship with that person going forward. In situations where administrators and managers go out of their way to interact with each employee on a one-to-one basis and create relationships with each worker, the source stated that sales figures and retention were likely to increase.

Engagement by the numbers
Human Resource Executive Online released similar study findings from Administrative Science Quarterly. The results of a recent study highlighted the need to identify personally on an individual basis as part of sales on-boarding, coaching and long term planning.

"I think companies should think more carefully about their on-boarding processes and find ways to give their new employees the time to think about their strengths and how they can best apply them to their jobs," said Francesca Gino, a professor at the Harvard Business School.

The study consisted of separating training groups into several separate sections. One of these remained a control group, receiving traditional education that consisted of older methods for engaging and teaching new employees. Two other units were given a more personal approach, wherein identity and personality were the central focus of how each person's on-boarding was managed. The results showed that the teams who were given a more one-on-one sales coaching experience were one-third more likely to stay with a business and hold a positive opinion of that entity.