#058: 21 Habits of Incredibly Successful Salespeople

Teaching Your Organization to Sell

A not-to-recent issue of Success magazine was entitled “Everybody Sells.” They are absolutely right. Anyone working for a living, sells, for that matter so does everyone else.

Selling, Sells

Think about it. The stay at home mom or dad is selling an activity plan for the day to the kids. Selling your 7-year old on why they don’t need the most recent fad toy is harder than any sale faced in the business world. The executive is selling an idea or a vision when they give the end of the year motivation speech to the troops. Pastors are selling when they deliver a message to a congregation because they are trying to get you to understand how a point of scripture relates to your life. And of course, there are the professional salespeople who sell products, services, and ideas for a living.

Whether you are a professional salesperson or not, selling is important to you. Your ability to influence others to do things is largely a reflection of your ability to sell your ideas. While selling is often viewed as an art form there are certain skills everyone can and should develop to increase their sales ability. If you don’t believe me think about the performance gains you would realize in your organization if every good idea that was generated was captured, developed, and sold. Regardless of whether you sell ideas, products, or services, if you could capitalize on just a fraction of the genius that exists in your employees all previous performance records would be broken. Would that kind of performance enhance your productivity? Your bottom line? Of course, it would! A first step in creating this kind of organization is to teach everyone to sell, and to sell well.

While most of the examples offered come from years of experience selling physical products to wholesalers or end users, you should be able to draw a correlation to your organization or business as well.

There are literally hundreds of characteristics of successful salespeople. Many of them are specific to the types of industries that people work in but the habits listed here are common to most. The 21 habits of incredibly successful sales people can be divided into three categories; personal habits, customer service habits, and work habits and skills.

Personal Habits

  • Learn to balance your work and family life.
  • Be early not just punctual.
  • Look the part of professional you are.
  • Start a little early and work a little late.
  • Enjoy the work you do.

Customer Service Habits

  • Never just say “No” to a customer.
  • Fight for your customer when they’re right.
  • Get customers to believe in you not just your product.
  • Listen to your customers.
  • Do extra things for your customer.

Work Habits and Skills

  • Practice Sales Management by Walking Around.
  • Expect continual improvement.
  • Know your competition.
  • Motivate through positive reinforcement.
  • Demand integrity from yourself and others.
  • Accept responsibility when things go wrong.
  • Give credit to others when things go well.
  • Take appropriate risks.
  • Never, never, never give up.
  • Create an intrapreneurial organization.
  • Lead first, coach second, and manage third.


The one characteristic that sets Christians apart from the rest of the world is our relationship with Christ. Success from a worldly point of view means nothing apart from our relationship with Jesus. It is this relationship that is the cornerstone of our faith. It is the foundation upon which we build our families, our careers, and the society in which we live.

As His ambassadors, we must live a life that reflects His values and principles, not the world’s. In the crush of a busy workday, it is easy to lose track of that simple fact. And because it is so easy to be distracted we must become, therefore, ever more diligent in maintaining our relationship with our Lord. Find a good church in your neighborhood and anchor yourself to it, find a group of your Christian peers in which you can confide and discuss the work issues you face, look for ways to apply God’s standards at work as you read and study His word daily. Above all remember that He is always with us to help us and guide us if we will just turn to Him.

 Join the Conversation

As always questions and comments are welcome. What habits of successful salespeople would you add to this list? Which one or two do you need to work on to become more effective?

Bonus Whitepaper

If you would like to go a little deeper into the 21 Habits of Incredibly Successful Salespeople  I encourage you to download the attached whitepaper. In this 10-page bonus whitepaper I’ve included:

  • A discussion of each of the 21 Habits of Incredible Successful Salespeople.
  • Meeting notes to help you focus your entire organization on the importance of selling, and the use of selling skills to enhance job productivity.
  • A collection of inspiring quotes and Scripture passages

Click below to download the bonus whitepaper:


Category: Skills | Communication Skills

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