On this fascinating episode of the Sales Gravy podcast, master sales trainer Jessica Stokes spends time with Steven Farber of Take Flight Learning discussing why it is important for salespeople and leaders to understand and adapt to different personality styles. You’ll learn the significance of how understanding personality styles will elevate your sales skills, help you build deeper relationships, and improve your closing ratio.

Key Takeaways:

  1. Importance of Personality Tests in Sales: Jessica expresses her enthusiasm for personality tests and their application in sales, emphasizing how understanding one’s own personality and adapting to others’ can enhance sales interactions and relationships.
  2. Bird Personality Types: The conversation delves into the bird personality types, a concept used by Take Flight Learning to categorize different personality styles. These include the eagle (confident, direct, results-driven), the parrot (social, talkative, enthusiastic), the dove (peaceful, harmonious, methodical), and the owl (wise, analytical, observant). Each bird type has its unique communication style and approach to problem-solving.
  3. Adapting to Different Personalities: Steven discusses the importance of recognizing and adapting to the various bird personality types in sales and everyday interactions. He shares anecdotes and examples to illustrate how understanding and flexing to different personality styles can lead to more effective communication and better outcomes in sales.
  4. Practical Tips for Salespeople: The episode provides practical advice for salespeople on how to identify and adapt to different personality types in their prospects and clients. This includes paying attention to cues like tone of voice, body language, and response patterns to tailor their approach accordingly.
  5. Personal Growth and Flexibility: Both Jessica and Steven emphasize the value of personal growth and flexibility in sales. They encourage salespeople to stretch beyond their comfort zones, be kind to themselves during the learning process, and continuously strive to improve their skills and adaptability.

Understanding Personality Styles is a Game Changer in Sales

People are different. You know it, I know it. You’ve got your quiet thinkers, your chatty Kathys, your decision-makers, and those who need a bit more hand-holding. If you’re treating them all the same, you’re missing out.

Think about your last sales call. Maybe it was smooth sailing, or maybe it was like talking to a brick wall. Ever wonder why? It’s not always about the product or the pitch. Sometimes, it’s about not clicking with the person you’re talking to. That’s where knowing a bit about personality styles comes in handy.

Understanding personality styles isn’t just about making sales; it’s about building relationships. When you get where someone is coming from, you’re not just another salesperson trying to hit a quota; you become a trusted advisor. Think about it. Would you rather buy from someone who gets you or someone who’s just pushing a product? It’s a no-brainer.

Speaking the Same Language

Let’s break it down. Some folks are all about the facts. They want the nitty-gritty details, the stats, the ROI. Then you’ve got the ones who are looking for a connection. They want to know you get them, that you’re on the same wavelength. And let’s not forget the decision-makers who want the bottom line, no fluff, just straight talk.

Now, imagine you’re pitching to someone who loves details, and you go in all guns blazing with big-picture talk. It’s like you’re speaking French, and they only understand Italian. Not exactly a recipe for success, right?

Here’s where it gets interesting. Once you start paying attention to these styles, you can tailor your approach. It’s like having a secret weapon. You start speaking their language, and suddenly, doors start opening. You’re not just another salesperson; you’re someone who gets them.

It’s About Making Genuine Connections

But here’s the thing: it’s not about manipulating or being fake. It’s about genuine connection. It’s about listening, observing, and then adapting. It’s about respect. You’re showing your potential clients that you value their way of thinking and communicating.

And let’s be real, who doesn’t want to feel understood? When you take the time to tune into someone’s personality style, you’re not just selling a product or a service; you’re building a relationship. And in sales, relationships are gold.

Understanding Personality Styles is Like Having a Secret Weapon

Understanding personality styles isn’t just good for sales; it’s a life skill. It makes you a better communicator, team member, and leader. It’s like having a secret weapon in your back pocket that you can use in and out of the sales world.

So, how do you get started? First, pay attention. Listen to how people talk, what they emphasize, and how they react. Are they all about the big picture, or do they dive into the details? Do they make decisions quickly, or do they need time to think it over? These clues can help you figure out their style.

Next, adapt. Once you have a read on someone’s style, adjust your approach. If you’re dealing with an eagle, cut to the chase. If it’s a dove, take the time to build a rapport. It’s like being a chameleon, changing your colors to match the environment.

And finally, practice. Like any skill, understanding personality styles gets better with time. The more you do it, the more natural it becomes, until one day, you’re doing it without even thinking about it.

It’s All About Making Connections

In the end, understanding personality styles is about more than just making sales. It’s about connecting with people on a deeper level, and in a world that’s becoming more automated and impersonal, that’s a skill worth having.

So, the next time you’re preparing for a sales call or meeting, take a moment to think about not just what you’re selling, but who you’re selling to. It might just make all the difference.

For more information on selling to different buyer personalities, download our A.C.E.D. Buyer Style Playbook

About the author

Jessica Stokes

Jessica Stokes is a Master Sales Trainer at Sales Gravy. She started her sales…

Online Courses

Learn anywhere, any time, on any device.


Learn Online

Self-paced courses from the
world's top sales experts

Virtual Training

Live, interactive instruction in small
groups with master trainers


One-to-one personalized coaching
focused on your unique situation