Qualities of a Successful Salesperson

What are the most telling signs that a prospective salesperson will be a success at your company?

April 1, 2010

"I look for sales experience and a sales personality. I ask candidates about the sales cycle and how they handle it. Real estate is just the product; I can teach them that. It’s the Sales 101 that I’m hoping they come with." −Karen Parsons-Fiddler, Great Western Realty Group, Mission Viejo, Calif.

"Resilience is one of the most important qualities I look for when recruiting. I try to determine through the interview process how people will respond to adversity. Are they controlled by their emotions? Do they easily give up? This business is ripe with potential disasters and it takes a certain personality to be able to set emotions aside and efficiently solve the tough problems we face daily." −Ty Lacroix, Envelope Real Estate Brokerage Inc., London, Ontario

"My experience as a professor and administrator at a Big Ten university demonstrated to me that the best recruits in almost every “meet-the-public” profession have these traits: 1) Significant amateur athletic backgrounds; it’s proof of team spirit. 2) Above-average performance in academia; intelligence is a base for success in most everything, isn’t it? 3) Self-esteem, self-esteem, self-esteem! 4) Talent in the arts; these folks are so appreciative of life and people and so broadly communicative. 5) Motivation to tackle new technology; success in the long run will come from riding the wave, not tumbling in the breakwater." −James Bath, e-PRO®, SRES®, Paradise Realty of Venice, Venice, Fla.

"I look for individuals with high morals, ambition, and a good work ethic. I want people who love people and sell from their heart, not their pockets." −Pam Brame, Long Realty Seaside, San Carlos, Sonora, Mexico

"Past success is not a particularly accurate indicator of future success. However, it’s the closest thing I’ve come up with." −James Phillips, McMahon Phillips Real Estate, Lincoln, Calif.

"One thing that isn’t often mentioned is being financially sound. To get started in this business you need deep pockets—most new agents are lucky if they get their first sale within three months. They need to have savings, plus funds for MLS dues, education fees, marketing and advertising, and so on. Most people don’t realize what it takes to make it in this business until they’re knee-deep in debt." −Jinx Cole, ONEIR Realty, Tampa, Fla.

"Real estate is not rocket science. Choosing to listen and apply the lessons that your broker or coach supplies to you makes the difference between success and failure." −Mike Conner, City Realty Inc., Olympia, Wash.