As well as a myriad of excuses including “the competition is cheaper”; “our product doesn’t do what the customer wants”; “they won’t make a decision” the typical cry of many underperforming salespeople is “sales is hard on my area!”
So what is it that differentiates the outstandingly successful salespeople from the underperformers? What makes them tick?
Having worked with hundreds of organisations for over 16 years, as a leading team of Australian sales training and coaching specialists KONA have found that the answer to that question is not as complicated as you may think.
Successful salespeople are, first and foremost, doing what comes naturally to them and therefore they enjoy being a professional salesperson.
The results of 1,000s of Personality Profiling tests done with salespeople from across many different industries show that:
- Only 6% of salespeople are true Sales Performers
- 20% are doing well but could do better.
- 74% are failing
- Of which 27% (of the overall total) are not willing to change or learn and should be in a different profession, and 49% can improve with the right type of Australian sales training and coaching.
While personalities are not entirely indicative of sales success, a number of personality assessments have been able to help managers identify how well a salesperson will fit into their particular role and work preference.
It is a valid argument that “there’s no such thing as a sales personality.” However, findings have shown recurring key personality traits that mark the selling style of highly successful salespeople, and following, are 5 key personality attributes of top salespeople:
1. They are persistent
Successful salespeople are persistent people. A Cahner research study has shown it takes an average of 5 meetings to make a sale yet 48% of salespeople give up after the first call. 90 percent have quit by the fourth conversation (and then BLAME THE CUSTOMER!).Only 10 percent make it to the 5th call.
The key to converting your sales pipeline into actual sales is the capacity to hang in there when others have given up and more importantly keep thinking about how you can add value at each meeting (rather than “I was in your area and thought we could catch up!”).
Successful salespeople are able to handle disappointments, bounce back and mentally prepare themselves for the next step of the customer’s buying cycle.
2. They are in the right sales role
Sales is NOT a one dimensional role and there are many different steps along the way from Identifying and Winning a prospect through to Retaining and Growing a client.Therefore, many KONA clients use sales personality profiling tools to find out the personality profiles of their interviewees, new recruits and existing sales people to uncover those who are more suited to Sales and Business Development roles and those who are more suited to Account Management roles.
A good example of this is the DiSC profiling tool which identifies the ‘Hunters’ (Drivers and Influencers) and ‘Farmers’ (Conscientious and Steady).
3. They are positive
Successful salespeople have a positive outlook on life. They see opportunity in every situation and are not stuck in B.E.D.No that doesn’t mean they get up early every morning – it means they do not Blame others; don’t make Excuses; and don’t live in Denial.
4. They listen
Successful salespeople sell solutions to problems and they do so by asking interesting and intelligent questions, then listening to the customer. They listen to gain a customer insight, and focus on understanding a customer’s overall Business Situation rather than just where they might be able to make a sale for their own product.
5. They are flexible and commit to ongoing learning
Given the constantly evolving nature of ‘the market’; technological advancements; and changing consumer behaviour, what worked last year may not work again this year.
Successful salespeople are consistently committed to updating and improving their knowledge and skills to evolve with the market dynamics.
It is an old cliché however, of the 1,000s of people KONA has trained over the years far too many proudly say they have “over 10 years’ experience” while sadly their 10 years is in fact 1 year repeated 10 times!!
The KONA Group is Australia’s Leading Sales and Sales Management Training and Coaching company and provide customised training programs that include: Sales Training & Coaching, Key Account Management Training, Call Centre Training & coaching, Negotiation Skills Training & Coaching, Motivational Speakers, and more.
So if you are looking to increase the effectiveness and results of your sales team, contact KONA today on 1300 611 288 or email: email@example.com to discuss how we can help you to improve your organisation’s results.