The 4 Types of Salespeople You Need to Know

Your Salespeople are not “Bad”

Too often in life, we think of people as either a failure or a success.

The reality is that every person is predispositioned to perform if they’re put on the right path. 

Think of cactus…

It lives in this environment that almost no other plant can survive, but if you tried to plant a cactus in Nashville, Tennessee, it will die. 

Is it because the plant is bad? 

Is it because the seed is bad?


One of the reasons why so many salespeople fail is because they were put into the wrong role. 

Another way of saying this is that they’re the right seed but in the wrong soil. 

This is true for every part of every role in your company. 

Hunters and Gatherers

Many business owners think of salespeople as being one breed, but even amongst salespeople there’s not just one breed, there are at least four.

When people think of salespeople, they’re mostly thinking of what we would call the hunter.

These people are the rarest type to find because they have the most difficult role of the four types of salespeople. 

This type of salesperson requires a certain level of emotional resilience and persistence.

They’re responsible for cold calling and building new relationships.

The second type of salesperson is what we call the gatherer which is more of an inside salesperson. 

They deal with new relationships as well, but they’re not so good at generating leads.

They’re good at bonding with somebody they just met, building trust quickly, and helping them make a decision.

Farmers and Planters

The third type is the farmer.

The farmer is vastly underestimated in a lot of organizations. 

Farmers are good at cultivating existing relationships. Farmers are basically account managers; they’re good at cross-selling and upselling. 

They’re not the best at developing new relationships, but if you can take your best customers and put them with these people, they’ll get them to buy 10 times what they bought. 

The last and rarest type of salespeople is planters. In terms of their personality, they’re a blend between a farmer and a hunter. They’re very focused on new business, but they’re also resellers.

They ask questions like: 

Hey, what do you need? 

Can we do a webinar together? 

Can I give you some copy? 

Did you know about this new funnel? 

So, they’re focused on generating new business, but they’re not doing it directly, they’re doing it through a third party. 

We call them planters because they’re planting seeds through other people. 

A fully mature sales organization will have all four of these roles, but it all depends on what type of work you need to do the most.

All you need to do to build the perfect sales team is find where your sales pipeline’s bottleneck is and hire the right person to fill in that gap.

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