Seller Types: The Challenger vs The Relationship Builder

Seller Types: The Challenger vs The Relationship Builder

Selling to someone is an art form. And, just like any art form, there are multiple approaches to it. When it comes to salespeople, there are five types:

  1. The Relationship Builder: Focused on customer relationships and ensuring a healthy relationship and does everything to meet the needs of the customer.
  2. The Reactive Problem Solver: They're very detail oriented and stresses follow-ups to ensure all issues are met and dealt with.
  3. The Hard Worker: Your traditional 'hustler,' coming in early and leaving late. They're highly self-motivated and don't give up easily.
  4. The Lone Wolf: Does things their way and has an ability to succeed off their instincts. 
  5. Challengers: They sell based off their customers understanding, pain points, and objections. They're not afraid to voice their opinion and are assertive when they communicate.

Can you guess which is the most effective, the relationship builder or the challenger?

My first impression was the relationship builder. I was wrong.

Studies show that 40% of top salespeople primarily use a challenger style while just 7% of the high sales performers use a relationship building tactic.

But why?

The relationship building tactic involved learning about the prospect/customer on a professional and personal level. The idea is to build trust to create a connection. While this may do just that, it doesn't push an audience towards action.

The Challenger method creates urgency. Much like the relationship builders, challengers learn about their prospect and focus on pain points. They observe their audiences current strategies and challenge them, highlighting how the solution they're offering can be more effective. This, as a result, creates more action because the audience's viewpoint has been shifted.


Now, it's my turn to challenge you.

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