The 5 Types of Sales Reps – Which One is Right for Your Business?

Innovation is difficult and innovations alone will not drive sales so who is on your team that can help you grow your business?  Do you have the right types of sales representatives for your efforts?  Can your sales efforts increase market share utilizing current resources?

What made your organization successful in the past may not be enough to maintain the current sales levels or even survive in the future.  Many companies are doing the same thing the same way with the same people and with the same customers.  Companies must evaluate their sales efforts and sales teams if they want to grow in this “new economy”.

In the book “The Challenger Sale” by Mathew Dixon and Brent Adamson published in 2011, the authors studied the skills, behaviors, knowledge, and attitudes that matter for high performance and developed five profiles of sales representatives including the identity of the most successful one.  It is a brilliant book that you should read if you are serious about taking your sales effort to the next level and stay ahead of the competition.

So what are the five different profiles and what is the most successful one?

The Hard Worker: This sales representative is always willing to go the extra mile, does not give up easily, is self-motivated, and interested in feedback and development.  21% of sales representatives fall into this category.

The Relationship Builder: This sales representative builds strong advocates in customer organizations, is generous in giving time to help others, and gets along with everyone.  21% of sales representatives fall into this category.

The Lone Wolf:  This sales representative follows their own instincts, is self-assured, and difficult to control.  18% of sales representatives fall into this category.

The Reactive Problem Solver: This sales representative reliably responds to internal and external stakeholders, ensures that all problems will be solved, and is very detail oriented. 14% of sales representatives fall in to this category.

The Challenger:  This sales representative always has a different view of the world, understands the customer’s business, loves to debate, and pushes the customers.  27%  of sales representatives fall into this category.

There is no doubt that the “Challenger” is the most successful of sales representatives studied.  The good news is that the characteristics and style of the “Challenger” representative can be taught and replicated in any organization.

Challengers do not lead with information, they lead with insights about how they can save money, increase revenues, or increase efficiency in their prospect’s or client’s business.  The Challenger teaches their prospects and clients things that they do not know and can use to improve their business.

Please feel free to contact us if you need help building challenger representatives in your organization for your selling efforts.

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About Peter C. Rathmann

Husband, Dad, President/Owner of SalesTechnik, and CEO/Founder of MKEB2B and the MKE Sales Accelerator

One response to “The 5 Types of Sales Reps – Which One is Right for Your Business?”

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