In an effort to help you (1) be a better sales person, or (2) hire a better sales person, let me share with you the Four Traits of Top Producing Sales People.



Every industry, company and type of sale is different and there is no “one size fits all” that leads to success in every industry.  However, I firmly believe that these four core character traits apply very well to many B2B selling environments.  Here they are:



The mental attitude or mindset that allows for self assessment and improvement through feedback and practicing selling skills.  Coachability comes from having a deep inner drive to succeed, as well as from having a high self concept.  Both of which are vital to selling success.  Otherwise we sabotage our own sales efforts and are slow to improve and see meaningful progress.


The skill of asking good questions in a way that leads to a deep understanding of a sales prospects needs.  Following a specific process for analyzing needs and being an excellent listener are both vital to selling success.  Otherwise we talk too much and turn into unpaid consultants who are very busy but don’t make much money.



The ability to acquire knowledge about our industry, company and products.  It is also the ability use that knowledge to properly diagnose customer problems and find creative ways to solve those complex problems.  These are vital to selling success.  Otherwise we become order takers and sales clerks that struggle to create any lasting value to our clients.



The behavior of consistently producing the quantity of sales activities needed to reach sales revenue goals.  Sales activities such as generating new leads, appointment setting, following up, sending proposals, giving product presentations and closing sales are vital elements in moving a prospect through the sales pipeline.  Otherwise hitting our monthly and annual sales quota is next to impossible.


So, if you are looking to hire a new sales person, find a way to evaluate them on these four traits.  If you are a sales person, find a way to evaluate yourself on these four traits.  The score may surprise you and give you something specific and meaningful to focus on that will significantly impact your sales productivity.


Until we meet again, don’t just sell.  Create value, do work that matters and make a difference for your clients.


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Terry L. Hansen is a popular speaker, consultant, trainer, and author on helping sales and marketing teams improve their ability to find more sales prospects, close more sales, and increase customer loyalty.  Connect with Terry on Twitter (@TerryLHansen) or on LinkedIn ( Contact him toll free by calling 844-205-5054 or email him at  Visit to learn how Terry can help your company increase its sales productivity.