5 Personality Traits You Must Possess To Be An Effective Salesman

Posted on September 18, 2015

Ryan Stewman



It’s obvious sales is NOT for everyone. Most salesmen aren’t closing deals and are starving to death. We ALL know how it is: someone says you’d be good in sales; you need a job, and the next thing you know you’re trying to make deals. To make matters worse, most of the time the person hiring isn’t a salesperson either, so they have no clue what to look for in a new hire.

Just think of how many prospects are out there, wandering around, still looking to get closed, because the salesman they happen to cross paths with couldn’t close a screen door on a windy day. I’ve gone behind my fair share of lost deals and turned them back into sales. People always ask me how I do it. It just comes naturally. In sales, you’ve either got it or you don’t.

The key is to know what to look for. Why waste your time and income in a sales position if it’s not for you? You’re going to need a few key personality traits if you want to collect big commission checks. If you’re not born with these traits, you must learn and develop them. Without ’em you can’t close sh!t.

None of these traits are greater than the other. They are codependent on each other. There’s no replacing or making up for them either. Just remember, we are not born with traits. They can be learned, implemented and become habitual. It’s not that hard to adapt this personality. Naturally, everyone is going to have one or two of these traits, but very few will have all five. Those possessing all five are the Closers.

#1: Good Listener

The person who talks the least makes the most. As salesmen, we are looking for a problem from the prospect, so we can provide a probable solution. When people are telling you about their problems they tend to talk a lot. A good salesman has to genuinely care, be empathetic and listen to the prospect. If you’re not a good listener, you lose. No one wants to hear a sales pitch; they want to hear a solution pitch.

These days, people forget a person’s name seconds after they introduce themselves. The guys and gals who listen to others really stand out. When you listen to someone, you show you care. People enjoy buying from people who actually care. There are plenty of people who don’t give a shit out there. Most salesmen talk too much. The way to close is with your ears, not your mouth.

#2: Friendly as a Box of Kittens

If you don’t like strangers or if you’re scared to meet new people, you’ll never make it in sales. Just know this: the sales you make will come from strangers. The people who know you well rarely buy from you. I know this is the opposite of what most sales managers teach, but it’s the truth. Ego and vulnerability are to blame for this. It is what it is. The sooner you realize it, the sooner you can sell to strangers.

You’d be surprised how many sales are made due to a smile. People like buying from friendly people. Meeting strangers and exchanging money can create some awkward situations. The friendlier you are, the less time you spend in the awkward zone. Treating prospects like longtime friends will get you a lot of sales. Most people’s friends don’t even treat them like friends.

#3: Fast Thinker

If you’re going to make big money in sales, you’ve got to be sharp. If you’re like me, you’ve got to work and practice harder than the next guy. Learning every single detail about what you sell helps. When the prospect throws out objections or questions, you’ve got to be quick with the answer. Quick answers scream confidence. Slow, thought-out answers show inexperience.

Fast thinkers are decision makers. One of the hardest things to do is to get a human to make a decision. When you demonstrate your ability to make fast decisions, others get a sense of confidence from you. Confidence sells products. Plus, you’ve got to be sharp when the client is throwing you zinger objections and trying to crawfish out of a sale.

#4: People Pleaser

Sales is all about making people happy by selling them what they want/need. If you don’t like to put smiles on folks’ faces, sales isn’t for you. You’ve got to truly want to see prospects happy and satisfied or you’ll never make it. People can tell by your face and body language if you like them or not. People don’t like paying money to people who don’t like them.

When people buy stuff, they want to feel good about it. If you genuinely care about them, they can tell. When people come to you with their problems and they see you really want to help them, they want to pay you. The more prospects you please, the bigger your check will be. Happy people and closed sales go hand in hand.

#5: Thick-skinned

I saved this one for last because it’s more about them than it is about you. The previous four traits pertain to you; this trait pertains to you, but is about them. We salesmen are shit on often. People don’t particularly care for salesmen. Knowing this, you’ve got to be able to take the good with the bad. When it comes to buying, some will, some won’t. So what? Every time you’re in a situation where the prospect isn’t cool, you have to remember the other times when they were.

If you’re not able to take criticism, sarcasm and berating from time to time, you’re not cut out for sales. In a business where the customer is right 99 percent of the time, you have to be willing to take it in the shorts and own up when it’s on you. The good news is that after a while, you get used to it and none of the BS matters.

If you’ll conjure up and use all five of these traits to your advantage, you’ll end up closing a lot more deals with a lot happier prospects. When I sold cars and had to greet someone on the lot, I always ran over to them, enthusiastically welcomed them and then asked their story. Most of my colleagues had a ho-hum approach and it was blatantly obvious which worked better.

If you’re ready to invest in your personal success and you’d like to find out about the programs we have developed especially for you, simply head to www.HardcoreCloser.com/tribe and we’ll have a sales conversation about your future.

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