Learn more about low performers in part 4 of A Fantasy Football Lover's Guide to Sales Talent from Ambition today!

Previous sections of the 2015 Guide: Part 1Part 2Part 3. Part 4. Part 5. You can also read our full 2014 Guide.

Each year, a few key players will decide the fates of your sales force and your fantasy football team. This is your scouting report. 

Welcome back to The 2015 Fantasy Football Lover's Guide to Your Salesforce. We're profiling 30 types of people you'll find on both the average sales force and the average Fantasy Football team.  We're about to go Mel Kiper, Jr on your sales team.

Part IV. Low Performers

The following six archetypes serve as thorns in the sides of Sales Teams and Fantasy Football squads year after year. 

These are your lower-tier performers. Their contribution is unevenly. Their success is sporadic.

And they're desperately in need of boosts to their motivation, skill set or expected date of release.

The good news: On both Sales and Fantasy teams, however, there's always hope for struggling performers. Just ask Peyton Manning.

1. The Bust 

Each year, sales hiring managers and Fantasy owners bet big on a few marquee names -- then watch with horror as their best-laid plans disintegrate.

Watching the downfall of a soon-to-be-infamous Bust is like witnessing the Hindenburg's slow descent, culminating with a fiery crash into the Titanic.

All the money, time and hope managers invest in their most memorable Busts evaporates into thin air -- though the trauma often lingers far longer. 

NFL Doppelganger: Montee Ball

Fantasy Sales Team

Fantasy Football veterans can rattle off the most notorious names by year.

"2014 ... Adrian Peterson. 2013 ... C.J. Spiller. 2012 ... Michael Vick." (quiet sobs) 

And this year, I'm predicting that Montee Ball will break the hearts of Fantasy Owners the world over. Mark these words.

Signs You May Be The Bust:

  • At least one person familiar with your performance has felt compelled to describe it as "soul-crushing."

2. Waiver Fodder

Unlike the classic "Bust," you should have known better than to take this guy.

Waiver Fodder is the person on your sales team all but begging to be let go. The individual with an acumen for apathy. A track record of tenuousness. A model of mediocrity.

Not everyone in sales is cut out for the profession, and the Waiver Fodder knows this better than anyone. 

NFL Doppelganger: Blake Bortles

Fantasy Sales Team

This one shouldn't be hard to see coming, but as the B.A.C. levels and sensations of panic rise in Fantasy team owners, common sense notions like -- "If at all possible, never own a Jaguars Quarterback" -- go out the window.

Between the Jags grotesque post-Brunell track record with Quarterbacks (prepare to be appalled) and Bortles's equally grim 1st year numbers, I think it's safe to say you're better off going with even a Rookie QB like Mariotta or Winston. 

Basically, anyone who doesn't have the Jaguars stench on them.

Signs You May Be The Waiver Fodder:

  • You spend your days at the office in a mixed state of fear and apathy.
  • You've told at least one coworker, "I stopped caring about this job 6 months ago."
  • You just got called into management's office "to talk."

3. The Hindsight Hero

Remember how good this guy was in 2011?? He absolutely killed quota that year!

Oh wait, it's 2015 and he spent most of last year scowling at senior management and complaining that he kept getting stuck with the worst territories. 

NFL Doppelganger: Fred Jackson


Fabulous Freddy Jackson has been a Fantasy favorite of mine for years.

The oldest running back in the League, Freddy has spent the last half-decade churning out quality work for the Buffalo Bills -- the highlight being the 2013 season where he hilariously upstaged the massively overhyped C.J. Spiller in his bid to take over the Bills starting RB job.

You won't recall a period where Fred Jackson was overhyped -- probably because, after 3 seasons as an NFL pro, he had exactly 1 game with over 100 rushing yards.

Fast forward a few years, and Freddy Fabulous is the most accomplished Bills offensive player since -- actually, I'm not even going to try to figure that out.

Now with all that said -- this ain't 2013. It was a good run, Freddy. #BillsMafia

Signs You May Be The Hindsight Hero: 

4. The Underachiever

Once you've achieved Hindsight Hero status, you're venturing dangerously close to "Underachiever" territory.

The Underachiever tag gets applied in one of the following two scenarios:

  1. An established, elite performer suddenly and inexplicably tanks in productivity.
  2. An elite talent enters the professional world with a pedigree signaling forthcoming greatness, only to embark on a career-long campaign of mediocrity. (Trent Richardson, you are on a perilous path right now).

Underachievers are among the most frustrating of all archetypes -- at least the Bust implodes in a way that's swiftly apparent.

By contrast, Underachievers keep companies hanging around longer in hopes of seeing those past flashes of greatness reappear. 

NFL Doppelganger: Andy Dalton


Ahh, the Red Rifle.

A couple of playoff appearances, some solid numbers and a fortuitous acquisition of A.J. Green gave Dalton a brief glimmer of that vaunted "upside potential" to Fantasy Owners.

I love listening to fellow Fantasy Owners talk themselves into Andy Dalton. It's the same one-sided conversation for going on three years now. 

"Tons of experience ... deep balls to A.J. ... people don't give him proper due because he's a Bengal/Redhead ... He's due for a breakout."

A month later: "THIS GUY [EXPLETIVE] SUCKS!!"

Signs You May Be The Underachiever: 

  • Upper-management keeps having internal monologues where they talk themselves into you.
  • Also, external dialogue.
  • That becomes increasingly rife with profanity. 

5. The Problem Child

The talented young employee at your office who comes into one too many morning meetings smelling of booze and whoever he or she danced all over last night at Sparkles nightclub. 

In the NFL, there is many a talented young contributor whose proclivity for illegal substances, talking back to management, and spending frequent Wednesday nights at the club makes him a source of pervasive anxiety for Fantasy Owners.

Have someone at your office who regularly asks about drug tests but still has a job because he or she is too talented to replace?

Sounds like a classic sales team "Problem Child." 

NFL Doppelganger: Johnny Manziel


What was the sum of all fears for a Browns fan in 2014? Johnny Manziel's debut playing out as it did, complete with the slapstick hilarity shown above. 

Can a Problem Child be reformed? Absolutely.

Are you playing Franchise Russian Roulette by placing your team's future in one's hands? Ask your nearest Browns fan.  

Signs You May Be The Problem Child:

  • During a company party at a local watering hole, you've had a peer take you aside and tell you to "take it easy" on ordering rounds of fireball and making increasingly emotional requests to hear "Tiny Dancer."  
  • You've frantically researched your company's drug testing practices sometime in the last six months.  

6. The Full-Blown Villain

This rare gem of a person has it all.

He or she is a) talented, b) unlikeable, c) arrogant, d) a spotty performer, e) a supposed leader, f) unreliable, g) highly-paid, h) a major influence over your team's performance and i) going to keep you up at night for the indefinite future.

It takes a lot to be a full-blown villain, and most sales forces (and fantasy teams) are lucky enough to be spared harboring someone who possesses each and every one of these traits.

But not all.

NFL Doppelganger: Robert Griffin III

Fantasy Sales Team

If I'm a Washington Redskins, 2015 is the year I embrace the hapless villainy.

The much maligned RGIII is just the type of the iceberg. So is the controversy over the team's racist nickname.

You want a full-blown villain? Meet Dan Snyder, the most hateable man in all of sports. Case in point: He sued the publisher of the article I just linked to.

Signs You May Be The Full-Blown Villain:

  • Every one, from your starting QB to your PR lackey to your plant in the local press, becomes the source of well-earned mockery and antipathy from the public at-large.
  • Unlike, say, Hannibal Lecter or Darth Vader, you have no redeeming qualities.
  • You generate not an ounce of respect from your peers. Just good ol' fashioned hatred. 

Creating Your Fantasy Sales Team

That concludes Part 4 of our 2015 Fantasy Football Lover's Guide to Your Salesforce. The 5th will premiere tomorrow morning, so stay tuned. And if you're sick of the same old sales contest, check out Ambition. Our platform lets teams take a "Fantasy Football" approach to workforce contests, and has been featured in the likes of the Harvard Business Review, Business Insider and the Sporting News.

Scope out our Product Overview for more information. And thanks for reading.

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