Key traits of a committed sales pro

*editors note*: After an extended summer holiday the crack writing team of is back! The last several weeks has been a fantastic blur of trips to Boston, the Galway Arts Fest, a week of utter mayhem better know as Race Week in Galway, weddings, and ice buckets! I am back to a bit more normal schedule as of late and am committed to updating you on all things Galway and MLK this fall. I hope you’ve had a great summer, wherever you are in the world. The post below is an idea that has been kicking around in my head for sometime. And for more info on getting involved in the push to strike out ALS please check out this link-


1 September 2014

A former CEO of mine was once quoted as saying, “A sign of a committed sales leader is that the last thought on their mind before falling asleep and the first thought on their mind when waking up is where they are in relation to their quarterly/annual target and what they are working on to close the gap / achieve success.” A bit extreme yes, but spend one day with a driven sales leader and you will quickly find that numbers rule the better part of our lives. For fellow sales pros reading, it’s ok, we know the career chose us and not the other way around. For what would life be like without the thrill / potential heartbreak of a quarter end chase?

True to form, this morning I hopped out of bed, shocked that it was actually September 1st, held momentarily in contempt my US colleagues who would no doubt be sleeping in and enjoying their final day of summer (somehow in Ireland we skipped from spring right into fall weather without warning) and immediately started thinking about where we were as a team Quarter to Date against our target and what we needed to do to close the gap for what is always a challenging time of year for our business.

This got me thinking about what other key numbers as sales leaders we are maniacally focused on, as well as unique personality traits of top performers. Through the years at SmartBear I’ve found the best reps showcase the following:

-At any given point in their day they can be stopped and asked, “How’s it going?” (Irish versions being “How ya keeping?” / “How ya getting on?” / “What’s the craic?”) and the first response is an update on where they are in relation to their given monthly/quarterly/year quota. Personal life answers to the question are secondary.

-They know exactly how many deals it will take for them to achieve and exceed their monthly/quarterly/yearly target.

-They immediately know their average sales price and are actively trying different ways to more effectively increase by upsell and cross sell.

-They always have at least 2-3 deals they are working on “in the background” that they won’t bring up publicly yet to avoid the potential jinx of a monster sized deal.

-They immediately can rattle off who their top 3 customers are and can effectively package up their success stories when speaking to prospects in similar industries.

-They know who their 3 key competitors are and can effectively speak to our competitive advantages.

These are the six that came to mind recently. I would love to hear from other sales leaders what key figures / traits they see in their teams on a daily basis. And if you are reading this in the west of Ireland and share similar commitment to software sales success, we’ve recently completed our first round of recruiting and are already staffing for expansion into 2015. Shoot me an email to discuss – miles

Until next time.


Street party with the Booka Brass Band as part of the Arts Festival.

Street party with the Booka Brass Band as part of the Arts Festival.


P.S – it has been a while since I’ve plugged any music; currently can’t stop listening to Ryan Adams latest –



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