The Successful Salesperson – Steve Driben

The Successful Salesperson – Steve Driben

  • 08 Jan 2017
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young-1024x282There are many interpretations of what a successful sales person “looks” like. But what are the specific characteristics or core competencies of successful salespeople? Well, there are many. Below is a Top 10 list of core competencies that every successful sales person.

1. Low maintenance: Independent, friendly, needs minimal support and supervision to get the job done.

2. Hits Quota: Does what it takes to develop contacts and hit quota.

3. Organized: Sets clear goals in a sales situation, ability to “read the deal”, calls the right plays, forecasts revenue accurately.

4. Close: The ability to negotiate deals, protect price points, pull deals forward, get the PO. If it makes fiscal sense, execute!

5. Communication: Effectively crafts and communicates the right messaging approach in a comfortable and confident way.

6. “Trusted Advisor”: Ability to identify customer pains and continuous learning as a “Trusted Advisor”.

7. Manage sales objections: Knows how to seed against F.U.D. instilled by a competitor.

8. Pays attention to details: Validates through what he sees and not what he is told.

9. Acceptance of personal responsibility: Does what he says he will do. Bad news does not get better with age.

10. Energetic: Has a high level of energy, compassion, optimism, and a positive mental attitude. Hard work and pride pays off.

In addition to the Top 10 List above, the following 5 characteristics are equally as important for sales success.

Positive Attitude

People want to associate with others who are enthusiastic and who have an overall positive attitude. Of course, everyone has bad days, but the best salespeople don’t display these feelings in front of clients. aboutimg3They take a day off or, better yet, develop personal techniques to manage those emotions. One very successful salesperson I knew would go home and change his suit if he was having a bad day. That process gave him a needed break and helped him shift back into positivity and high performance.

Make Great First Impression

According to scientific studies, you have very little time to make an impression when meeting someone new. In fact, if it’s not a good impression, you’ll struggle to overcome it. Top salespeople know that it’s important to look sharp and speak well during those first meetings with prospects and customers, because that’s how they will be remembered.

Keep Their Commitments

Trust is a key component in any relationship, and it is especially important in sales. When top salespeople make promises, they keep their commitments, reinforcing to clients that they can be trusted.

Knowledgeable about Customer Needs

Top salespeople know everything there is to know about their products and their competitors. But, above all, they know their customers’ needs. According to a survey of customer-buying attributes, the top reasons buyers selected a particular supplier was because they felt that the salesperson understood their needs best.

Never Give Up

Top sales people focus on bottom line results. It is not acceptable to fail because of external events. Top sales people find a way to succeed despite external events. They have a determined attitude to achieving results.


Steve Driben is a business performance advisor helping business owners run a leaner business, increase revenue and protect profits.


Article originally published December 9, 2015 on Medium.

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