7 Characteristics Of A Successful Salesperson

Learning how to be a successful salesperson is much easier said than done. Sales is an industry that, admittedly, is not for everyone. The road to success is full of twists and turns, and “No” is the most dreaded word in any language on Planet Earth. Whether you are pitching a startup to investors or convincing satellite customers to switch to digital cable, a successful salesperson must know their product, be personable, and be confident in their ability to relate the benefits of their product to the personal interests of their customers.

For those with more outgoing personalities, this becomes almost second nature, but for those who need to improve on their abilities, there are traits and skills you can develop to help improve your success in sales. If your goal is to improve in your success as a salesman, here are 9 common characteristics of successful salespeople you might consider adding to your persona.

1. Always Remain Positive

Convincing people of buying products that they do not particularly want, and especially do not actually need, is a challenge in itself. You’ll be doing yourself a disservice, however, if your attitude reflects negatively on your professionalism. When pitching a product to a customer, it is important that you maintain a positive aura. A customer is much less likely to purchase a product from someone who comes off as vague, boring, speaks in monotones, or seems to have a negative outlook as opposed to someone who wears a smile, makes jokes, laughs, and presents themselves as a person.

2. Try to be Personal

Being personable and being positive really go hand-in-hand. A successful salesman is able to relate to people on a personal level; they are excited by the prospect of meeting new people and networking with other professionals in order to build relationships that can be mutually beneficial.

Always try to present yourself as a person to your customer. Make small talk about current events or enquire about their day or how work is going for them. This is especially important if you are meeting with a client in their home. Try and find a way to connect the practicality of your product to some aspect of your customer’s life, and avoid being monotone or condescending, especially if you are on the phone and not face-to-face; this will likely make the customer less interested in buying from you.

3. Be Passionate

A successful salesperson is not only passionate about their job and the opportunities it presents them for meeting new people, but also about their product. Presenting a product or service that you do not believe in or that you have no interest in will reflect negatively on your attitude and overall appearance. It is important to take pride in your work. Be excited about the product you are selling and about the industry you are in, and it will help make engaging the customer that much easier!

4. Always be Respectful

Part of being personable is being respectful. Successful salespeople are able to listen to their customers when engaged in conversation and find out exactly what it is they need or what they are looking for. Remember to make the presentation about them, not about you. Showing that you have their best interests in mind and presenting yourself in an amicable, but professional manner, will help make your job that much easier.

5. Be Persistent

Every salesperson has had to deal with rejection, most likely on more than one occasion. For some people, hearing no over and over again, either from the same person or repeatedly from new customers, can be a serious drain on your spirit and positivity. A successful salesperson, however, does not simply give up after the first “No”.

If you find yourself being told “No”, take a step back and reevaluate the situation. Ask if there is something about the product that they are still not sure about, or if there is an area they want you to go back over. You can even be as blatant as to ask why they do not want to buy the product. Persistence is the key to turning a “No” into a “Yes”, just so long as you are persistent in a respectable manner.

6. Be Resourceful

You cannot hope to be successful at sales if you do not improve your ability to be resourceful. A successful salesperson is able to find alternative approaches to conducting their pitch, using both their imagination, general knowledge, and a bit of creativity. It is also important to be able to utilize tools like books, seminars, current events, and industry trends to your advantage. Keeping up-to-date on product information, new developments in technology, and recently released publications can help drastically improve your ability to relate to customers and close business deals.

7. Take the Initiative

Successful salespeople know how to take their work into their own hands. They do not have to wait around for instructions from management or worry about what leads they will get from the company. Salespeople are go-getters. They attend networking events, learning seminars, and community outreach activities. If they have a product that needs to be sold, they find a way to sell it, and if they have a doctor’s appointment that morning, they check with the receptionist, nurses, and fellow patients to see if they may be interested in their product(s). If they find they cannot relate in anyway to their customer, they find a way for the customer to relate to them. Persistence, determination, and resourcefulness are the key characteristics that make up a successful salesperson.

If you can learn to develop these skills and use them to perfect your sales pitch and presentation, you will be well on your way to improving your success as a salesperson. There will still be a lot of obstacles and objections to overcome, but if you present yourself in a respectful and professional manner, and never give up on improving yourself through learning and persistence, there is nothing that can stop you from achieving your goal of success in sales.