8 years ago
April 18, 2016

5 Things Your Sales Reps Are Doing That Kill Their Credibility

Sales reps must increase their credibility in order to successfully make sales. These 5 amateurish behaviours can kill sales in an instant. Read on.

Rhys Metler


Most sales reps aren’t natural-born sellers. They refine their selling strategies and develop their selling skills over time. They learn what works and what doesn’t. And they ditch the behaviours that cost them sales. This is what makes the best sales reps successful.

Amateur sales reps often lose out on tons of opportunities to close sales due to ineffective approaches, attitudes, and behaviours. They dig their own graves and kill their credibility with their words and actions, often without even realizing it. Here are some of the big killers of credibility that are seen far too often in sales.

1. Talking Too Much

A sales pro knows when he’s made the sale. And he stops talking. But amateur sales reps will just keep on talking and talking, often killing the deal in the process. Once a customer says he’s interested, he’s already sold, and there’s no reason to try to continue to convince him. You might just end up saying something that turns him off and makes him change his mind.

2. Playing the Waiting Game

Poor sales people live in reactive mode. They wait for leads to come to them. They wait for customers to tell them what they want. They wait for opportunities to come to them instead of going after leads. As a result, they fall behind.

They’re constantly late to a sales opportunity, once the buyer is already far down the purchasing journey and buying criteria have already been established. Playing catch up isn’t a good strategy in sales. It will only lead sales reps to fall behind their competitors, who have already started building relationships with the prospects before they even started shopping. The best sales professionals know that they have to be there from the beginning of the purchasing journey, helping to define buyer requirements, bringing value, and sharing insights in order to increase their credibility, and ultimately, make the sale.

3. Focusing on Their Products

Poorly trained sales people make their products the star of the show. They think their products should be the focus of the conversation, but sales pros know that the customer is always the star. They know that focusing on the products makes them seem more concerned with making the sale than with solving the customer’s needs, wants, and pain points. When leading with their products, poor sales people don’t set themselves up as trusted advisors or consultants, just as untrustworthy sales people, which kills their credibility.

4. Pitching during Sales Calls

Sales calls are critical to the establishment of trust and relationships. But many sales people fail during the sales call. Unfortunately, bad sales reps doom themselves to product-pitcher status instead of taking the sales call as an opportunity to learn more in-depth knowledge about their customers and connect with them on a deeper level. Poor sales people start a sales call in presentation mode and jump into demos and PowerPoints. They don’t actively listen to the verbal and non-verbal cues their buyers are giving them, so they don’t uncover their real issues. They see themselves as presenters instead of humans talking to other humans. This leads to an awkward and tense dynamic that provokes a guarded and untrusting posture from the buyers. Don’t be a product pusher during the sales call, be a consultative professional. Remember, it isn’t an infomercial.

5. Being a Pushover        

It’s natural to get excited when a customer gives you something to do. It means you got his attention and you’re moving forward. It gives you a chance to prove yourself. But being a pushover and doing whatever the customer asks doesn’t set you up for respect. The best sales reps know that this will only lower the buyer’s perception of them. True sales killers who are confident in their sales process aren’t afraid to push back, and this builds respect and credibility. No one admires a yes man.


Rhys Metler

Rhys is a tenacious, top performing Senior Sales Recruiter with 15+ years of focused experience in the Digital Media, Mobile, Software, Technology and B2B verticals. He has a successful track record of headhunting top performing sales candidates for some of the most exciting brands in North America. He is a Certified Recruitment Specialist (CRS) and has expert experience in prospecting new business, client retention/renewals and managing top performing sales and recruitment teams. Rhys enjoys spending quality time with his wife, son, and daughters, BBQing on a hot summer day and tropical vacations.