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What is the One Trait All Successful Sales People Share

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As a sales and business development consultant, I’m often asked, “What is the one trait of your most successful sales professional?” That’s an easy answer: they are fearless. They don’t fear anything. They don’t fear any question or opportunity. They don’t fear rejection and most importantly, they don’t fear letting go of bad business.

Margaret – The Popular Sales Person

Margaret is in sales. Margaret is personable, professional in her appearance and good with follow up. When I first met Margaret she had recently moved from a customer service position into a sales role. I was hopeful. Some of the most successful sales professionals I have met started on the service delivery side of the business. Their knowledge of the product, of customer’s day to day challenges provide a perspective many sales professionals never can replicate. If they can embrace the challenge of sales fully, they usually knock it out of the park.

Margaret seemed teed up to be one of these great success stories. She easily engaged with new people and had no fear about meeting them. Her pipeline quickly filled up with opportunities. Her meetings were positive and everyone loved Margaret. After a few months of this I began to notice something, she had a lot of proposals but no closed business. She seemed to be meeting a lot with prospects but not coming back with signed business.

Fear

I soon figured out that what motivated Margaret was being liked. I also figured out that as positive has her meetings were, generally, her prospects were just kicking the tires and she was chasing the wrong kind of business. Her challenge was she was afraid of losing deals vs. finding the right type of business. She was afraid that if she asked the tough questions, they wouldn’t like her anymore and not do business with her.

The Case to Be Fearless

Many Sales Professionals hold onto opportunities in their pipeline that just are not a good fit for their products or services and they end up failing because they either can’t close the deals or the business they do close is poor is not profitable, or leaves quickly.

Successful sales people are fearless. If a prospect is not a good fit – they let them go. They understand if this client isn’t happy coming on because they’re not a good fit, they are going to have a bad relationship, not a profitable client. So, everybody loses. If everything appears to be great except for one nagging concern, they don’t gloss over it. They address it directly and professionally. If it can’t be overcome, they professionally decline the business and do their best to refer their prospect to the right solution.

So, eliminate fear from your relationships with your prospects, close profitable business and create a reputation internally and externally as a true Sales Pro.

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Jack Kelly
Jack Kelly
Jack founded the Corlea Group in early 2009 with his first client coming on board in January of that year. Jack loves to coach. He coaches his clients and he helps coach his kid’s teams – it’s his passion and has been for over 25 years as a professional, father and volunteer. Why? Because he likes to help a team succeed.
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