Day: March 1, 2020

Five Habits of the Best Salespeople (and how they differ from their underperforming peers)

Five Habits of the Best Salespeople (and how they differ from their underperforming peers)

Are you doing things every day to make you a successful salesperson? Are you following the best practices of top salespeople?

For managers, do you know which traits to encourage in your reps? Do you have a plan to make them better by pushing them in the right direction for success?

1. The top salespeople spend more of their time selling. High performers spend 36% selling than their peers. Top salespeople spend 19-23 hours selling per week, but average salespeople only spend 14-18 hours selling per week. Spend time focusing on activities that generate revenue. 

If you want to be a top salesperson, you need to spend time focusing on activities that generate revenue. It is not uncommon that salespeople will complain about being dragged into non-revenue generating activity, but few maximize their time. This also means that you need to understand that being a top salesperson is not a 40 hour per week job. You need to delegate the time-draining activity to weekends and after hours. When are you doing your expense reports (hopefully on Saturday morning)? When are you sending thank you notes and follow up emails (hopefully in the evening while helping the kids with homework)?

2. Top performing salespeople don’t give up easily. Top performers will try to contact a lead nine or more times before giving up. Average performers will only try to reach a non-responsive lead five times before moving on.

This activity doesn’t have to all be once-per-day phone calls. As I explain in my book, Eliminate Your Competition, you should be developing your own newsletter for maintaining a relationship with your customers, your top leads, and your cold leads.

3. Top performers are driven individuals. When asked to discuss their traits, 81% of top salespeople rate “being driven” as being very important. Average reps only said this 57% of the time.

4. Top performing salespeople think critically. When surveyed, top performers rate “critical thinking” as being essential to their success while only 40% for their average performer brethren.

5. Surprisingly, high performers tend to be more independent. Top salespeople solve their own business problems and are not needy of their manager. Sales managers report that they spend 30 minutes less time per week than their average performers.

Part of the reason that sales managers spend less time with their top-performing reps is that every manager wants at least a moderate improvement in rep productivity. By definition, it can be easier to get more net growth from a low performing rep than a top-performing rep.

However, to be a top salesperson, you need to be able to run your business. You can count on your manager for “air support” in times of need, but you need to have your own plans for moving your prospects through the pipeline and making small customers into big customers.

Following is a video that gives a few more details to these five critical traits.

Header Photo by OpenClipart-Vectors (Pixabay)