7 Vital Qualities Every Hiring Manager Is Looking For When They Hire An SDR

qualities of a great sales development rep (SDR)

Sales Development is the hotbed career aspiring money-makers are desperate to get into and launch their career. However, San Francisco Bay area SaaS startups cannot hire SDR talent quickly enough because of the accelerated business growth opportunities that talented SDRs produce for their use.

But what makes one of these super hot startups choose one individual SDR over another for a position on their Sales Development team?

7 Qualities Of A Great SDR

  1. Drive
  2. Sector Interest
  3. Keen Learner
  4. Curious
  5. Skillful
  6. Team Player
  7. Aspirations For a Successful Sales Career

1) Drive

It’s well known that SDRs have one of the most challenging jobs in the business. It takes serious grit and determination to fight through the rejection, difficulties, and letdowns of being in sales development. This is why the drive is a requirement for any aspiring SDR.

Being driven will mean you’re ready to go through thick and thin in your work to reach your goals. You will have the automatic motivation and be prepared to put in the extra hours, turn up for work early, and generally make a good SDR. The best ones are persistent and will put in the time, so being a driven person will show hiring managers you are ready to work.

2) Sector Interest

If you’re passionate about a subject where you can find work, it will significantly assist with your application. Regarding SDR roles, look towards your target business vertical to find this connection. For example, someone who loves technology would find great motivation and satisfaction in selling an excellent new technology service or product.

The key is finding your chosen topics and areas to which you could create this connection. For example, in interviews, you will subconsciously light up and speak much more naturally when you begin to talk about the sector the business works in. Conversely, candidates with no interest in a particular vertical will find it harder to converse as naturally and go the extra mile as they can simply because you’re invested in the heart of the business.

Hiring managers will recognize you as a person who needs no help in understanding the market they are in and someone who will be able to speak very well to clients and prospects. In addition, they will know you’ll be more likely to work hard and enjoy your work in a sector you love. These ingredients equal a better SDR.

3) Keen Learner

SDRs often land at the lower echelons of the career ladder. Therefore, any SDR or future sales development leader needs to learn continuously. CEOs continue to learn daily, so you must show your willingness to learn.

The awareness that you need to learn a lot to become successful in sales development will present a good case for hiring managers. They will likely have programs and inductions to help you understand the ropes and gain the essential skills you need, but showing you are aware of this will only be a plus for them.

I would never hire anyone who thought they knew all there is to know about a subject or discipline, as things change so quickly. So show you are ready and willing to learn as much as possible.

4) Curious

SDRs often have to try new messaging and techniques to reach out and generally tamper with their work to improve results. You cannot do that unless you are a curious person who wants to try new things, find out what happens and experiment, and then optimize the results.

Being curious also leads to new ideas and innovation, which every company worth staying with for a long time will love. Of course, anybody can follow orders, but it takes a specific type of person to put their spin on a process or email body and test it out.

Curious people always ask questions to get to the heart of why something is done in a certain way, unearth new patterns and find new opportunities. This is where exciting things can happen.

5) Skillful

One way to impress the team you’re joining is to show them you’re cut from the same cloth as them. If you can cold call the team leader and relevant managers, email them and socially surround the leaders and the team, you’ve already shown that you’re developing the core sales skills needed to be successful.

This demonstrates a commitment and serious interest in working with the company. This persistence tells the company you’re bought into what they do and are dead serious about becoming a part of their team.

Not every candidate going for a job will do this, and even if other SDR candidates are calling into the business for the job you want, if you manage to reach out more creatively and get your interview or call back, you’ll have the respect of the hiring manager and sales leaders.

6) Team Player

Great SDR teams are made of team players, not lone wolves. Sharing what is working, giving feedback, and collaborating are great ways to build on overall SDR team success. However, if you show signs of becoming a lone wolf, hiring managers may easily see you not fitting into the team’s ethos.

When sales leaders share how they reward their teams for hitting quotas, they often reward the team with a day out, beers, a day off, and all sorts of team-orientated experiences designed to boost team spirit and collaboration. Unfortunately, this doesn’t work and does not incentivize the team if they’re all in the game for themselves and not interested in the team as a collective. Nobody builds a team like that.

Plus, any business can fail if the collective fails – even if one person is a superstar and crushes it. It is about the team, so showing you’re all about the team effort will help the hiring manager picture you in the group and build you into their unit.

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7) Aspirations For A Successful Sales Career

Sales is hard. You don’t get into sales and stay there if you’re not bothered and could happily do anything for a job. So if you have aspirations of a career in sales, it’s good to tell your hiring manager what that looks like. Even better, knowing roughly what the path to achieving that goal looks like is a good sign you’re a good individual with a plan, ready to execute it.

If you have serious ambitions and plan to become a VP of Sales with a team of 20, you can’t do that without starting sales. For employers, this is good, knowing that the candidate is serious and will do what it takes to reach it.

Looking for your next big sales role? Create a profile on Rainmakers and take your sales career to the next level!