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July 31, 2019

The Top Predictor of Career Success That Salespeople Need to Know About

Sales managers dedicate so much of their time to the hiring process.

And you have a laundry list of traits that you look out for. Your ideal candidate must be a great communicator and have mental resilience. They need to learn quickly and adapt to situations.

There’s so much to look for that things can get confusing.

Unfortunately, that confusion can lead to hiring people who aren’t cut out for the role.

Life would be so much easier if there was just one trait that acts as the perfect predictor of success.

That trait does exist.

And it supersedes any trait that you might think about when you’re hiring.

So What is it?

It’s a really simple trait and you can usually see it from the moment someone walks through the door.

I’m talking about optimism.

That positive mentality is so important when it comes to sales. Someone who has a positive mindset will always look for ways to solve problems.

They won’t bemoan the issue or let setbacks grind them down.

Instead, optimistic people are always eager to learn so they can achieve better results.

And there’s science to back this up.

Dr. Martin Seligman is a researcher at the University of Pennsylvania. He crafted an Optimism Test for MetLife to help them with their hiring practices for salespeople.

MetLife ran the test alongside their traditional sales aptitude test.

His analysis showed some shocking results.

In the first year, those who aced both tests performed 8% better than those who only showed an aptitude for sales.

The second year saw that figure jump up to 31%.

Even better, Dr. Seligman convinced MetLife to start hiring people who only passed the Optimism test.

After a little training, those hires started outperforming the pessimists who had sales aptitude too!