Most people's perceptions are that all sales people are gregarious, loud and ego driven. In some cases, elements of this is true. There is no doubt that self confidence, high energy and resilience rank highly in top performing sales people. So what about the quiet ones?
Today I was building a sales strategy with a CEO of a wonderful small business in Perth when we started to discuss one of his high performers. "He has all the attributes you describe in a Sales Cat and a lot of the competencies you outlined in the Banjar competency model" he commented, "but he is unusually quiet and often says, "I'm not really selling."
"What?" I said, "Not really selling! How could that be?"
The facts are this guy is so comfortable in his particular selling environment he has become the ultimate stealth bomber Sales Cat. He knows his product well, he is experienced in the particular trade he sells into and most of all he clearly understands how his product solves problems and helps the customer see this. He is a true business person who sells!
The tip here is this. Recruit sales people who know their product or service well, however make sure you recruit and coach people that are intimate with the application of their product or service in it's business environment. What problem does it solve? How will it add value to the clients business so they get better? Teach your current Sales Cats about the industry they sell into. If it's retail get a retail person to describe the language, issues and gaps to success in retail.
These quiet sales stars will grow raving fans in your customer base and no competitor will hear it coming.