Both groups “make really good salespeople.”
That’s the contention of Ken Krogue, an entrepreneur who wrote this interesting article over at Forbes.com last week.
When looking for the best salesmen, you can toss out the research questionnaires, behavioral analytics, surveys, training manuals, business books, and more, Krogue says.
In 1994, Krogue worked as a hiring manager for Franklin Quest, which later merged with Stephen Covey’s organization to become FranklinCovey. As someone responsible for hiring at one of the fastest-growing companies in America, he was compelled to analyze “what factors, at least in the men on the team, made up the leaders in sales.”
Two things stood out among the high-performing men: “A strong background of personal athletic achievement … and being an Eagle Scout.”
As an aside, I should point out, as Krogue did in his post, that all of the women on his team in 1994 were in the top half of the performers. That’s why he was interested in studying the men to see what set the better ones apart.
Nearly 20 years later, Krogue still does the hiring—but at a different company, now. And even with all the additional research at his disposal, “those rules I learned back in my Franklin days two decades ago still hold true.” So he’s still hiring all the former college athletes and Eagle Scouts he can.
Why? Krogue says former athletes “work hard. They practice. They discipline themselves to continually do better. … They don’t mind being measured on results.”
And Eagle Scouts?
Eagle Scouts have to persevere to finish. They have a wide range of skill sets. They learn to do hard things. They are disciplined. They aren’t afraid of performance. They learn to lead in real world scenarios. They sacrifice their time to serve. They are also more mentally tough.
“That’s why smart sales executives hire Eagle Scouts,” Krogue concludes. “In 2013 as much as ever.”
What do you think?
What makes Eagle Scouts better prepared for a career than boys who were never in Scouts or didn’t earn Eagle? Leave a comment below.