What makes a good salesperson?

Trying something new. Sometimes I will post about my thoughts about Japan, about the Philippines, about IT and Technology, about Business, etc.

I’ve been doing “sales” for exactly 6 years now. Stumbling along the way. And since I haven’t had any formal training, even now I still don’t know if I’m doing this sales thing right.

But I am learning, and enjoying all the complications (moving parts) that come together in doing business.

Recently I’ve been thinking about the qualities of a good salesperson. If ever I am going to write an ad for a job opening in my department, what requirements should I put down? What quality should I look for most during the interview?

I believe the most important quality of a good salesperson is that he/she genuinely cares for people.

Caveat: there are many other qualities, with many sales styles and strategies, talked about in length by experts in books and blogs. Some say it’s technical or domain expertise, or communication skill, or confidence, or grit and perseverance. But for me – what I would want for my department – it’s genuine care for people.

The caring salesperson wants to see their clients, as well as the people in their organization, succeed in their endeavors. They show they care by doing the hard, and many times tedious, work they believe needs to be done. They are far from perfect, but because they care they don’t remain stagnant, they improve their own skill and knowledge, as well as their product and/or service.

I believe “closing” comes naturally to the caring salesperson. And it comes with the great bonus of having a clear conscience knowing that the close will benefit both the client as well as the organization.

The downside is that caring takes a heavy toll on the salesperson (as it is with everyone), especially if people are unresponsive, unappreciative, or even downright malicious. It is also difficult to quantify genuine care so they’re harder to ‘manage’ using traditional management and metrics (number of customer smiles per day?)

At the end of the day, some people are just naturally happy to see other people happy.

And if that person is you (and you can speak/write Japanese, and you have a background in Software Development), please send me a message 🙂