8 years ago
April 13, 2016

What Is The Right Attitude For Salespeople?

Here are a few of the traits you’ll be watching for and how to determine the sales attitude of your candidates.

Rhys Metler
the right attitude for salespeople

The days of the aggressive sales person are long gone and while there are still a few holdouts, there has been an evolution of the type of attitude that is needed for a successful sales person. Today’s highly successful sales people are the masters of relationship building and understand that subtlety and listening are the keys towards making a sale.

If you’re looking to hire a talented sales person, it helps to understand the attitude that you’re looking for and which traits your ideal candidates will display. Let’s take a look at just a few of the traits you’ll be watching for and how to determine the sales attitude of your candidates.

1. The ability to effortlessly communicate with a stranger.

This should go without saying, but you need to look for a sales person who displays the attitude of affability and the ease of instantly picking up a conversation as if they’ve known you all of their lives. This ability will be easy to spot in an interview situation. If the candidate seems hesitant, shy or takes awhile to warm up, they don’t have this natural ability to get past their nerves and begin carrying on a meaningful conversation.

2. Healthy levels of self confidence.

An effective sales person displays healthy levels of self confidence — not arrogance. You need to be able to tell the difference between the two traits. An arrogant attitude is not a trait you want in a sales person in today’s marketplace. Self confident candidates will be modest, while still talking about their achievements and their personal goals. You’ll be able to tell that they feel at ease, even while being questioned and they won’t display traits of arrogance such as blustering or over-promising.

3. The right sales outlook.

Relationship building has never been more important in the sales process. You need a sales person who understands that they need to listen to their prospects, ask them about their needs and come up with solutions that meet those needs. They also need to be willing to nurture their leads, even if they get a no the first time. Lead nurturing plays a vital role in the sales process and you need candidates who are willing and capable of doing this. You can determine whether or not a candidate has this trait by asking them what they will do if they get a “no.”

4. High levels of self motivation and self accountability.

The best sales people are those who display high levels of motivation and hold themselves accountable for their own performance. These are the candidates who are going to display interest in a tiered compensation system, since they know they have plenty of room to set their own goals and earn more money. Be wary of a sales person who is concerned with the base pay and entry level tiers for commission. You want people who are naturally hungry and more than willing to get out there, hunt for themselves and bring in what they want to earn.

Ideally, you should be looking for candidates who display all of these characteristics. These are mostly innate traits that cannot be taught. While you can work on motivation levels, the rest of these traits are ingrained in the sales attitude of the candidate and can’t be changed. It’s much better to wait to find the perfect candidate who displays the right sales attitude than to spend money training a candidate who simply does not have what it takes to succeed in this industry.

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.