Sales Personality Traits that Effective Salespersons Should Possess

The role of a salesperson cannot be overstated in this day and age.

There is a lot that goes into being a great salesperson. A salesperson is the first touchpoint for your business, which means you would want your salesperson to have an agreeable demeanor. Salespersons should be multifaceted. They will usually have to deal with more than one task at a time; being a multifaceted person means that they can deal with the unique challenges brought on by closing a sale. 


The salesperson should also empathize with and understand a client’s needs. Therefore when hiring a salesperson, the right personality comes into play. It is commonly believed that finding someone with the right personality wins half the battle. 

This article will help you identify the sales personality traits that a salesperson might need. If you are a Sales Development Leader looking to hire sales reps and don’t know where to begin, this might be a great starting point! 

What Defines an Excellent Sales Personality Trait?

A sales personality trait is defined as a set of traits or qualities crucial for a great salesperson.

An effective good sales personality trait will gravitate towards making clients feel comfortable. They are committed to making the customer feel like they are the king, which is impertinent because customers like to feel like they are important. Thus, the salesperson’s job is to make the customer feel like they are winning. 

Sales Development Leaders should look for specific personality traits before considering recruiting an SDR for a position.

Traits To Look for Before Hiring a Salesperson

A salesperson is the first point of contact for a potential lead.

Your salesperson should know how to build a long-lasting relationship with your brand. As Jeffrey Gitomer famously said- “Great salespeople are relationship builders who provide value and help their customers win.” With that said, let us look at some qualities that make a great sales personality! 

1. Are They Extroverts?

A salesperson needs to have an outgoing and extroverted personality.

A salesperson will usually have to approach the client by themselves. An extroverted personality will go a long way to help the salesperson to connect with the client. Extrovertedness is the only sales personality trait that needs to come naturally to a salesperson.

It is not a quality that one can fake easily.

So Sales Development Leaders need to ensure that their potential recruit is genuinely outgoing. You can do this by setting up an in-person interview. Usually, you can tell whether or not the recruit has this important sales personality. 

2. Are They Resilient?

Sale is an unforgiving area.

The challenging nature of sales makes resilience an important sales personality trait. A salesperson should know how to keep up with tracking clients. A client might not respond the first few times positively. But a good salesperson will follow up and incentivize a client to get a product. Resilience also makes the client feel like their problems are valid, and their concerns are heard.

Resilience will ultimately land a sale and make the customer feel like you are helping them out of a problem.

3. Can They Multitask?

Sales have many spinning wheels.

An essential sales personality trait is multitasking. From contacting new leads to following up on old leads to closing a deal, a salesperson has a lot to do. It also means that the salesperson should be able to deal with numerous tasks. At a fraction of the cost, sales automation tools like help SDR multitask better as their tedious and operationally heavy task get automated

Someone who can multitask efficiently can maneuver the sales process quickly.

4. Can They Take Rejections?

Rejection is inevitable in sales.

Having the capacity to accept rejections is an essential sales personality trait. After all, not all promising leads are going to follow through. An effective salesperson knows how to take rejections in stride and move on. The circle of self-pity can blow the salesperson’s self-confidence and lead to lower efficiency. A salesperson must retrospect on what went wrong in this sale and learn.

Dwelling on failures will waste time and mental willpower in the sales world. 

5. Can They Genuinely Be Caring?

No one can fake a caring and genuine human interaction.

A salesperson should love the craft of sales and have a knack for it. Half the craft relies on genuine human interactions. A salesperson with a welcoming personality automatically makes others feel comfortable. Sales reps that are caring will also have empathy that makes them genuinely want to help their clients.

This makes the client feel like their concerns are being addressed with extra care and attention.

6. Are They Multicultural?

Respecting a person’s culture makes them feel important; this is essential if you want to foster long-lasting relationships with your clients.

A client can be from any part of the world. Your salesperson should be respectful of all cultures. It is a plus if the salesperson has been exposed to several cultures because people who have never been a part of a culture cannot replicate the subtleties of some cultural actions.

A multicultural salesperson will have the edge over your competitor’s sales team.

7. Are They Well-Read?

A well-educated salesperson will always have witty anecdotes and funny stories to share.

It is a common sales tactic to make the client feel comfortable in the salesperson’s presence. The most suitable way to do this is by sharing stories and jokes. A well-read salesperson can also talk on a broad range of topics.

Keeping up to date on current events, popular publications, and industry gossip will make sure that the client instantly connects to the salesperson.

8. Do They Remain Calm Under Pressure? 

Sales can be a fickle occupation.

There are always clients to keep in touch with, new leads to talk to, and hundreds of other things. If your potential recruit is not good at handling crises, they might not be suitable for your company. Maintaining calm under pressure is a universally desired trait as it allows a salesperson to develop solutions.

A Sales Development leader recruiting the salesperson can give the recruit several ‘What if’ scenarios and evaluate them based on their answers. 

9. Can They Network? 

Networking is a skill that takes work to teach. It is an essential sales personality trait.

Networking is another skill that a salesperson needs to possess. Networking allows a salesperson to connect with other sales associates and learn the tricks and tips that are helping them close sales deals. It also has the obvious benefit of bringing in new clients.

SDRs need to know events to draw in the most significant potential clients’ crowd. These events are where they can connect, network, and potentially bring in clients. 

10. Can They Think Out of the Box?

A little out-of-the-box thinking can turn the fate of a sales call.

Your salesperson needs to have a creative mind. Every client is unique – this means the solution to their problems will also be unique. It takes a thoughtful and creative sales mind to understand a client’s unique requirements and truly help them. A salesperson needs to know creative and innovative ways to help a client.

Can They Think Out of the Box?

11. Are They Focused?

Sales reps should be focused only on one thing which is achieving sales quota. 

They should not get distracted by any emails or instant messages. They are neither worried about any kind of office gossip.

They understand what needs to be done to succeed and set their goals accordingly.  They have their day perfectly planned and deep focus on all aspects of their work.   

12. Are They Passionate?

The salesperson should not sound despised while making a sales pitch, the prospect would be able to sense it and may be reluctant or less likely to acquire the product/service. 

Salespeople, who show passion and enthusiasm towards their job, have a higher chance of receiving positive responses towards their offerings.  

Where to Find Your Next Sales Representative?

According to Harvard Business Review, poor hiring decisions account for over 80 percent of employee churn.

The quality or level of experience of a salesperson might differ depending on the product your organization is selling. Salespersons for online product sales are the easiest to recruit because almost all profiles can sell online products.

To find the perfect salesperson for your business, let’s first examine where to find them. 

  • Organise College Seminars 

College students are –

a) highly educated

b) know a lot about socializing with people.

These two are top qualities when it comes to choosing a salesperson. College students are also hungry for opportunities to prove themselves. Sales have a competitive edge that allows college students to bring out the finest in themselves.

Organizing college seminars allows sales development leaders to meet the students and hire them based on their personalities.

  • Social Media 

Did you know that there were more than 4.8 billion social media users worldwide in April 2023?

This figure equates to almost 59 percent of the total population! This means social media is the best place to find your next salesperson! Not only is social media a great platform to recruit your next salesperson, but it is also an excellent place to find new clients. After all, 75 percent of B2B buyers are influenced by social media when making the next sales decision. 

  •  Referrals from Existing Sales Reps

Your existing salesperson might already have someone in mind.

Maintaining close relationships with SDRs will give you an insider’s perspective on the next salesperson you might hire. Your SDR already knows this new recruit, so they can vouch for them. This is a fantastic way to recruit your next salesperson.

  • Job Post Websites

There is not enough use of job recruiting websites, as apparent as it may sound.

Websites like LinkedIn, Glassdoor, Xing and Kakaotalk are a gold mine of potential SDRs. You have to make the offer sound attractive to them. LinkedIn is the third most visited social media site after Facebook and Instagram. Is it why the job search market is shifting online? With job postings, you could also specify the qualities you are looking for in your potential recruit.

Make good use of this resource while recruiting your next salesperson. 

Final Words

Henry Banks once said, “A salesman minus enthusiasm is just another clerk.”

There is much truth to this statement. A salesperson without the appropriate soft skills will never be able to foster the connections required to close a sale. First and foremost, a client is a person. They seek adoration, respect, and human connection.

It takes a unique personality to tap into this innate human need for connection.

The outcome of a sale is often contingent on the SDR’s attitude, not the clients. A sales leader or recruiter should take the time and effort in their recruiting process to find the right SDR that embodies all the above-mentioned qualities and then train them in the art of sales. 

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Will AI and automation take over the job of a salesperson?

Closing a sale can be a complicated and protracted process.

There are times when changes will need to be made at the drop of a hat. The unpredictable nature of sales means that no matter how advanced AI or automation gets, a human touch is always appreciated (and needed). A salesperson can also change sales tactics at the drop of a hat and improvise actions to help a lead convert to a sale. 

2. What is the distinction between trait and skill? And why should we hire for traits?

A trait indicates a person’s thought patterns and behavior.

Though hiring a sales rep based on their skills is essential, looking out for traits that indicate a strong sales personality is important. You can teach sales skills to a sales rep. A sales personality includes specific characteristics that you cannot teach. It is why a Sales Development Leader should hire for sales traits. 

3. How long should a sales rep onboarding take?

A sales rep with no background in sales should take at least three months of training before dealing with clients. In fifteen months, the sales rep should be efficient in making sales.  

4. What are some habits of a successful salesperson?

There are some habits and processes that a salesperson will have in place to ensure they are performing at their peak capacity. Here are a few habits of a successful salesperson that an SDR should look to adopt:- 

  • Always committed to overdelivering.
  • Make it a habit to have perseverance 
  • Be attentive and note the pain points of different clients. 
  • Enthusiastic about their work. 

These habits don’t have to come to a sales rep naturally. As long as the sales rep is committed to practicing these habits regularly, it should become second nature to them in due time. 

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