What should a sales person learn to grow as an elite? What abilities should he/she build to become top 1% on this position?
The short answer is CLOSING.
If you can make deals happen…if you can make money for your organization…if you can consistently close business, then the world is your oyster. The goal of every salesperson should be to consistently create real revenue for their business, full stop. No skill is more important than closing…it’s what you get paid for!
However, there is another answer to the question, but it’s completely dependent on your career ambition within the sales trade.
If your goal is to be a first class hunter, then closing is everything. BUT, if you have management ambitions then you must develop other skills as well. It’s important to note that not all sales stars make good sales managers. In my personal experience, the best sales managers I have known were usually core performers as individual contributors, very few were ever stars.
As far as skills go, sales managers must have a deep understanding of sales craft, they must be able to identify people with talent, motivate mediocre performers and drive revenue at the team level. In short, they have to understand how to lead salespeople with authority.
Truth be told, this requires much of the same knowledge as the sales star, but does not always require the same practical skill set or performance record. More than anything it requires an entirely different set of ambitions than being a shark does.
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