It Takes All Sorts To Build A Sales Team

According to the various studies, salespeople generally fall into eight categories. These categories represent behavioural tendencies in sales situations, rather than set-in-stone personalities. Managers can effect changes in their current salespeople, and recruit better team members in the future, if they understand what these eight types are, and how they all interact.

We help you to understand the 8 different styles of sales people here:

1. Experts

They make selling seem effortless, keep customers happy and consistently outperform their peers. Experts are best used to mentor up-and-coming sales staff and spread best practices throughout the team. Around 9% of salespeople fall into this group.

2. Closers

Closers are usually the ones who pull in the very big deals, typically in product sales areas rather than services. They are great at countering customer objections, and are often where some of the stereotypes of salespeople can come from. But their smooth-talking style can be off-putting to some customers. This accounts for around 13% of salespeople.

3. Consultants

These salespeople listen well and are very good problem solvers. They are skilled at developing solutions that meet their customer’s needs, but they tend to be one dimensional, and often forgo valuable case study examples that could boost sales. Consultants make up around 15% of salespeople.

4. Storytellers

Storytellers are heavily customer focused and love to provide stories and case studies in their sales pitches. They build strong customer relationships resulting in loyal, long-term sales relationships. This can yield a lot of positive results, but they can often ‘talk through the sale’ and indulge in long meetings that don’t actually close a sale. Storytellers account for 7% of salespeople.

5. Focusers

Know their products inside out, and believe in them 100%, but might lack the confidence to sell them effectively. They often insist on detailing every product feature and may not hear the customer’s needs. They may need some support in listening skills, and how to use their skills and dedication to meet customer’s needs. Focusers account for 19% of salespeople.

6. Narrators

These salespeople know their offerings and the market, but can be overly dependent on scripts when selling. They cling desperately to marketing materials, and fail to respond properly to challenging questions. 15% of salespeople are narrators.

7. Aggressors

Aggressors approach sales meetings purely as price negotiations. They can score some big wins and they rarely concede too much, but some customers will be put off by such a combative approach. Aggressors make up 7% of salespeople.

8. Socialisers

The last category is socialisers. They may initially impress customers with their friendly chat about things like children and cars, but they often struggle to get past this, and don’t tend to close many deals on their own. 15% of salespeople are socialisers.
As you can see, all of these styles have their own advantages and disadvantages, and there is no ‘one perfect’ type of salesperson. Different industries will demand different approaches, and often the ideal sales team is made up of a mix of these styles. By consciously recruiting salespeople with complimentary styles and managing your sales team to facilitate (and make the best use of) these styles, you can create a really strong and effective sales team from day one.

Do you want some help finding the next superstar for your sales team? Get in touch with our team now!
Phone: 01189 680831
Social Media: LinkedIn | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | YouTube


  1. Looking back now, I fall under a few of these categories. Brilliant. Manny Hothi