Sam Black is a Strategic Business Partner with Profiles International, a leader in testing and state-of-the-art online assessment products. Over the years, we have found that it was not just enough to provide expert sales training, telemarketing training, customer service training, and consulting services for our clients. In many cases the raw resources, the right employees, were not on board to participate in the employee training programs.
As a result, we now help our clients identify the qualities needed to perform the sales, telemarketing, customer service, or management positions within the organization, and then use these state-of-the-art assessment tools to help recruit or identify those individuals internally and then develop training and coaching to support them.
The result has been employee training programs where employees benefit from the programs designed and delivered by Sam Black Consulting because they are the right employees to be trained and the training is customized to their development needs. Also, managers are able to provide effective coaching and targeted development programs because they have specific information about each employee’s development areas. The assessments provide focused coaching suggestions to help management create effective coaching programs.
Sam Black has an MBA in Management/Human Resources, so the addition of assessment tools to her service offering was a natural!
What are assessments and why they are critical for employee training?
Assessments are validated instruments that measure different qualities of an applicant or employee. They may measure specific skills, or may measure behaviors, attitudes and interests, or may measure overall personality. The best assessments for business recruitment and employee development on the market are those that have been validated with a working population, and those that can create internally validated benchmarks or patterns of performance - which Profiles calls Performance Models. The best sales rep to sell a “widget” in Omaha may not have the same characteristics as the one who works on the East Coast. (And that has been proven!) Tools that allow fine-tuned benchmark or Performance Model development are more accurate and valid than those offering a “cookie cutter” pattern or benchmark that is meant to apply to all employees in that position at any company around the country.
Assessments can be administered “paper and pencil” and self-scored, or can be delivered electronically via the Internet and scored by an algorithm that is impartial and validated. Sam Black Consulting uses the Profiles International suite of assessment tools. They are Internet delivered and scored, and provide an array of instruments that can be used for both pre-hire selection and post-hire coaching, diagnostics for employee training programs, and ongoing employee development as part of a coaching and performance evaluation program.
Assessment Case Study
I'm working with a client with a remote sales person who is not making goals. She inherited him so she never assessed him when she was hired as Sales Manager in 2012 (she uses the Profiles Sales Assessment for all her new hire candidates and we created a strong internally validated Performance Model from her top 4 sales reps. She has been using the Profiles Sales Assessment for 12 years, in EACH of her Sales Management positions!)
This remote individual scores very low in Numerical Reasoning - 3 versus the 7 to 10 range for her top performers, and he is a 3 on Energy versus the 5-8 range for the top folks. He is only a 3 on Decisiveness indicating a lower sense of urgency than the top performers and he is a 9 on Manageability while the top performers fall into the 5-7 range; indicating he prefers stronger external controls and supervision - which might be difficult to provide for him when he works remotely. Finally Financial/Administrative and Mechanical are NOT in his top 3 areas of interest... which are two key interest areas of her top four. So NOW she has the information to coach him in those specific development areas when she goes out to his city next week!
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