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Six Success Traits of Top Producers

By: John Chapin

Top Performers

There are six important success factors that top salespeople possess. Although some of these factors are arguably more important than others, they are all critical to a salesperson’s success.

When I talk about top salespeople, I’m referring to people who are great salespeople and great human beings. Over the years there have been salespeople who are good at pushing product with little regard for customers. This kind of success doesn’t last; moreover, the other areas of their lives are often plagued by neglect and mismanagement. I hope you’ll use these tips to get great at selling while also helping customers.

Six Sales Success Factors


1) Positive attitude: enthusiasm, drive, competitiveness, and confidence

Top salespeople have a positive, can-do, winning attitude. Specifically, they are enthusiastic, driven, competitive, and confident. Top salespeople have dynamic energy and are highly motivated to succeed. A top salesperson is easy to spot the second they walk into a room. Their clothing, the way they walk, their overall demeanor—everything about them exudes an air of confidence. This self-belief is borderline cocky, yet doesn’t cross the line into arrogance. They see selling as a competition, and they love competition.

Top salespeople do whatever it takes to win—ethically, and they do not quit. They are extremely persistent, yet they are not pests. They are always moving ahead, changing, growing, and pushing through the bad times until they make it.

Top salespeople have a win-win attitude. They believe that both they and the person getting involved in their product or service win as a result of the transaction. They truly like and care about other people. Top salespeople thoroughly enjoy selling.

They view victories and defeats in proper context. They don’t allow a victory to make them comfortable or a defeat to ruin their day. They have an expectant attitude that something good will happen every day.


2) Being action oriented

Top salespeople take purposeful, focused, well-thought-out action. They are not frozen by fear or paralyzed by indecision. Like others, they may occasionally feel fear, yet they act in spite of it.

Top salespeople are clear about what they are doing and why they are doing it. They don’t procrastinate. They are protective of their time and use it wisely. Top salespeople have a plan and they work their plan every day. They know what actions lead to their success and that’s where they spend their time. They follow the 80/20 rule, realizing that 80 percent of their results come from 20 percent of their effort. They do not waste time on menial tasks. They effectively delegate these tasks and focus their efforts on the crucial 20 percent.


3) Preparation.

Top salespeople are prepared for anything and they over-prepare for everything. They never wing it. They have prepared scripts, presentations, answers to objections, and closes. They practice, drill, and rehearse. They never rest on their laurels and are always looking for ways to improve.

They are familiar with all the details of their job. They make sure they have all the tools of their trade with them, and they know how to use each one. They are ready for anything and expect the best, yet they have a plan if the worst or anything else in between shows up.


4) Being businesslike and business-savvy

Today’s consumers are smarter, competition has increased, and consumers are focused more than ever on getting the most for their money. Companies have a goal of running more efficiently and being more cost effective than the competition. Consequently, top salespeople partner with customers and build a compelling business case based upon what’s best for the customer. They know their customers’ business and problems intimately. They ask intelligent questions that both set them apart from other salespeople and, more important, let the customer know they thoroughly understand the business.


5) Ability to stand out from the crowd.

Top salespeople have the ability to differentiate themselves from other salespeople. They don’t sound or act like other salespeople. They don’t say the same things that other salespeople say—they are original.

A top salesperson doesn’t come across as someone trying to sell; he or she comes across as an interested and informed party—someone there to help.

Top salespeople have an aura of respect around them. The way they walk and talk demonstrates to others that they are professionals and in turn, they are treated professionally. Top salespeople are real, human, and down to earth, and people like them for this reason. Their caring, sincerity, and helpful dispositions stand out. They are memorable.


6) Likeability, trustworthiness, and the ability to build relationships

Sales has always been about building solid, loyal, long-term relationships. This is true even in businesses such as real estate and car sales, where the frequency of sales can be years apart. Top salespeople develop and nurture customer relationships and consider most of their customers to be friends. They get many referrals and do business with their customers’ friends, family, and associates.

Sales success hinges on the ability to cultivate trust and likability. This, along with nurturing long-term relationships, sets top salespeople apart. Liked and trusted salespeople often make sales even if their product isn't top-tier. Conversely, if people don’t like or trust them, they’ll almost never make the sale.

Top salespeople easily establish connections and rapport, exuding trustworthiness and warmth. Their ability to make friends and convey genuine care and interest leaves a lasting impression. They prioritize making others feel valued and understood, forging personal connections that resonate with others.

Top salespeople are authentic, transparent, and show genuine interest in others. They prioritize serving clients, fostering genuine connections, and demonstrating sincere care for their needs and interests above everything else.

John Chapin

#1 Sales Rep w 34+ years’ experience, Author of the 2010 sales book of the year: Sales Encyclopedia (Axiom Book Awards) – also the largest sales book on the planet (678 pages). 508-243-7359

John Chapin is a motivational sales speaker, coach, and trainer. For his free eBook: 30 Ideas to Double Sales and monthly article, or to have him speak at your next event, go to John has over 34 years of sales experience as a number one sales rep and is the author of the 2010 sales book of the year, Sales Encyclopedia (Axiom Book Awards). You can reprint provided you keep contact information in place.

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