Global searching is not enabled.
Skip to main content

Five Qualities Good Salespeople Should Have

Completion requirements

Whether you’re trying to boost your skills or hire great salespeople for your team, I recommend looking for these characteristics. You can hone your sales skills by cultivating these five qualities.

They’re Competitive

Salespeople don’t typically want to show up for work, stare at their computer for eight hours, and then go home. They live and breathe selling; it’s almost like a high. They’re often energized by the idea of outdoing themselves, their fellow salespeople and their competitors.

This doesn’t mean you’re looking down on others or being hard on yourself. If anything, sales are actually about pushing yourself to be better. How can you improve your close rate? How can you get more leads? What can you do to help prospects see you as an authority?

Good salespeople seek out chances to improve because that’s what makes them better. This usually means more commissions and more money in your pocket, too.

They Listen

When you think about “sales,” you might picture a slick-haired, smooth-talking car salesman. He won’t take no for an answer, and he’s just running his mouth without listening to the customer.

This stereotype is for bad salespeople. Good salespeople shouldn't treat client calls as a chance to pontificate; they should treat them as equitable conversations. You should still lead the call, but you need to give the customer time to respond.

When you listen to the customer’s goals and pain points, you can better align their needs with your company’s offering. That means the call should be more relevant to the customer and more solution-focused. I've found that if you can make that happen, you stand a better chance of closing the deal.

They’re Resilient

Sales can be a tough gig. One month you might be riding high on a wave of closings and commissions. The next, no one returns your phone calls, and you experience a dry spell.

The best salespeople are resilient. They don’t love rejection (who does?), but they can accept hearing no a million times without despairing. Let rejection and failure motivate you. Rather than seeing failure as a character flaw, use it as fuel.

They’re Confident

Confidence is the currency of sales. A good salesperson comes off as confident, in control and informative — even if, deep down they are filled with insecurity.

It’s all about how you present yourself to prospects. Does your voice tremble when you talk, or is it engaging and bright? Even if you don’t feel confident, presenting yourself that way will bring trust and security to your pitch.

While your tone and body language matter, your choice of words can also have a huge impact on your message. You should use confident verbiage such as:

  • Certainly
  • Definitely
  • Absolutely

What matters is that you’re comfortable enough in your skin to appear confident, which can make prospects feel more comfortable with closing the deal.

They’re Honest

Sales are not about tricking people into buying a subpar product. That’s not only dishonest and wrong, but it’s also just bad business. I have always hated expressions like “She can sell water to a whale!” People often mean this as a compliment, but to a true salesperson, it can be quite the opposite. Why? Because water is the last thing that a whale need. Good salespeople should be honest from the start and should only want to sell you something that you need for your personal and professional success. And yes, that means being honest — even if being honest means losing a sale.

Be honest with the customer about what the company can truly provide. Can you meet their metrics? Be realistic. It’s easy to get carried away and promise people the world right now, but if your team can’t deliver, it’s only going to make customers angry.

After all, referrals are valuable in the world of sales. You don’t want to anger your customers — they have the potential to refer even more customers to you in the future, which makes your job easier. When in doubt, be honest and upfront from the start.

Click here to view a video that explains the six things you need to be good at sales.