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What Characteristics to Look for when Recuiting Sales Staff

There are a number of key characteristics of an effective sales person and an interview is the ideal basis on which to judge someone’s sales skills. After all, if they can’t sell themselves to you they’re unlikely to be effective at selling your product or service.

Choosing the right sales staff is vital, as joint research commissioned by the North East Chamber of Commerce (NECC), Canon, the Learning & Skills Council, Northern Rock and One NorthEast, illustrates. Their research centred on the economy of the North-East of England, and suggests that if sales skills were improved to such an extent that all sales targets were hit, it would be possible for firms in the region to hire an additional 150,000 employees. This translates to a figure of £12 billion.

When interviewing potential sales staff you should look for the following characteristics:

  • Assertiveness – someone who can clearly and concisely put across their point without becoming aggressive.
  • Character – someone who is likeable and easy to get along with.
  • Competitiveness – a competitive attitude is hugely beneficial. Many people dislike selling, the rejections, and trying to close a deal. Truly effective sales people have a competitive streak where they actually enjoy the challenge of closing deals.
  • Confidence – someone who can take a lot of rejection without it affecting their confidence.
  • Enthusiasm – there’s a lot of truth in the saying that enthusiasm is infectious. If you can make the potential customer excited about the potential of your product or service you’re half way to concluding a sale.
  • Presentation – someone who can be the face of your company.
  • Listening Skills – the best sales people are excellent listeners, picking up on potential sticking points and objections before addressing them clearly.

Related Articles:

- How to Master the Art of Selling
- How to Write Effective Sales Letters
- How to Close a Sale
- The Importance of Sales Targets
- The Perfect Sales Pitch
- Where to Find Sales Staff

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