In their now iconic book, The Challenger Sale, first published in 2011, Matt Dixon and Brent Adamson identify five ‘sales personas’.
Whether you buy into the Challenger theory or not, it’s a fascinating read. Here at Amack, we think different types of salespeople are what makes the world go round, and definitely what makes for a happy team. But we thought we’d have a bit of fun with the Challenger theory. Here’s our own Extremely Scientific* quiz to discover your sales persona.
* It may not be entirely scientific.
1. What is your spirit zoo animal?
A A zebra. I thrive best around like-minded folk, but I also welcome others along on the journey and I’m fascinated by new people.
B Does the zoo have an aquarium? I’m an octopus! I like to think I’m a pretty sharp thinker and I get a thrill out of solving puzzles.
C A beaver. You can always rely on me to get the job done and go the extra mile. I get a real kick out of a day’s hard graft.
D A wolf. I’m out on my own in life but I’m a high achiever. I might not be a ‘people’ person but you’d want me on your team.
E An orangutan. I’m quiet but a bit of a deep thinker and I like to think outside of the box, too.
2. What’s your idea of a great holiday?
A I love a cruise. Different city every few days. Meeting new people at dinner each night.
B Hiking somewhere with friends, with no real plans. Just living on our wits a bit and navigating ourselves around somewhere beautiful.
C I actually like a working holiday, helping do some good for the environment alongside others. Something like dry stone walling with the National Trust. I can’t be doing with sitting around on beaches.
D A desert island somewhere sunny. Or a Scottish island in a bothy. Just an island really. Preferably with no one else there.
E Dune boarding in the Namib desert. I just like something a bit different, and exploring somewhere off the beaten track.
3. What’s your favourite biscuit?
A A KitKat. One wafer for me and another for whoever I’m sharing a cuppa with.
B A Jaffa Cake? I’m just fascinated by the ‘is it a biscuit, or is it a cake?’ conundrum. I’m in the cake camp personally, for tax purposes. But if I can sneak it in under the biscuit radar, I will.
C Homemade Jammie Dodgers. Yes, they require a bit of work to get right, but the results are so much better than the real thing.
D A Chocolate Digestive. I’m a dunker and I just quite like the thrill of ‘will I or won’t I lose half my biscuit into my mug of tea’.
E Melomakarona. These are Greek walnut syrup biscuits that I discovered when I was travelling in the area one summer on sabbatical.
4. What product from history would you most like to have given a sales pitch to investors for?
A The mobile phone. Imagine being in on the ground floor of something that changed the way we are connected…
B The Rubik’s Cube - totally iconic!
C The wheel. Talk about being able to demonstrate good value in a pitch.
D My very own app I invented. No, of course, I’m not telling you what it is! This thing will make me my first million!
E Zoom! I was telling people about how great it was long before the pandemic.
Now add up your scores.
You are a Relationship Builder. You’re all about creating personal relationships with your clients and within your own company and you know that working collaboratively is key to success.
You are a Reactive Problem Solver. You are focused on the fine detail but understand your clients’ businesses inside out and are able to find solutions from their perspective.
You are a Hard Worker. You are known for always going the extra mile and never giving up. You firmly believe that nothing was ever achieved without hard work.
You are a Lone Wolf. You’re a bit ‘your way or the highway’ but you always get results. In a pitch you are confident and go with your instincts. You’d always rather rely on your own wits than on others. You’ve never let yourself down, after all.
You are a Challenger. Congrats! According to the book, this is ‘the one you’re meant to be’. But don’t tell the others! You often bring a slightly different perspective to the table and pride yourself on your ability to push your clients to think outside the box to find long-term solutions that work.
The Challenger Sale by Matthew Dixon and Brent Adamson is still available if you’re inspired to learn more. Or if you’d like to learn more about how to sell to your clients, try our Pitch Challenge, designed especially for small businesses.