5 Qualities That are Found in High-Performing Salespeople


What are the traits of highly successful salespeople?  It just seems to come naturally to some people – what is it about them you might have wondered?  If there were one answer to that question then hiring managers across the globe would be able to easily target and identify successful salespeople before they’ve ever worked a day on the lot.  Even when they think they’ve got it right some people don’t live up to the hype. The truth is, people have made selling successful in different ways. However, several common traits form when you look at the personality traits of highly successful salespeople.  Here are 5 highly common traits.

Emotional Intelligence

You’re having a bad day, or a good day, but you’re having a day.  Good salespeople know how to temper their moods so they consistently present a professional and approachable demeaner to potential buyers.  They have a stronger ability to identify their own emotions and how they’re coming across to others, which means they can respond in a way to deal with that and get back in the game.  More importantly though, they have the ability to read others’ emotions and reactions. They can see a price didn’t sit well with a buyer, a scratch in the bumper, etc. They’re very keen on picking up the signals so they can respond – addressing objections before they’ve even been raised.  

Finisher Mindset

Plainly stated – they do what it takes to get the sale.  In the sports world they call it vision. They see the field – the coverage, the angles, the blockers, the tacklers.  They can see the obstacles coming before they are there and then put the spin move on here, the straight arm there, and touchdown.  High performing sellers are the same way. They see the obstacles coming and they’re going for it. They don’t give up on a sale even when it looks improbable. They deploy practiced sales techniques until it’s a definite no (for now).  

Achievement Hungrysales people

This piggybacks on the Finisher Mindset, but it’s different in that Finisher Mindset is going into each individual sale ready to do what it takes.  Achievement hunger is big picture. It’s how they identify themselves as a person – a high achiever. You can identify an achievement minded person by seeing their reaction when a month starts bad.  An achievement minded person knows their behind goal, but instead of getting down they’re motivated by it. This is a trigger that lights a fire within them, not the rain that puts it out. In order for a person to truly be achievement minded though, they have to be confident in their abilities.

Confidence in Skills

High achievers have a general sense of confidence.  They feel comfortable being dropped into more situations because they can handle those situations with their skills and abilities versus only being able to do what they’re already comfortable doing.  In essence, it doesn’t matter what they’re selling, they could sell it. Backing that confidence is a set of practiced skills. They can identify buyers’ needs, they can find the products that specifically address them, they can remove the excuses for buying it and they really believe they can do that on a consistent basis.  That confidence in their skills perpetuates sales.


Not many things will be a quicker turn off for a buyer than a salesperson who doesn’t know the answer to any questions.  High performers know the buying process, general financing answers, product answers, or they know how to get answers quickly.  Some of that will come with time, but continuing to understand and learn product features and product developments is a key trait of high performing sellers.

Probably the best news about all of these traits is that they can be learned and developed over time.  If you find that you’re lacking in any of these categories, leverage your current strengths to close sales and continue developing these other characteristics to advance your sales career further.