What does it take to be a top producer? Is it training, connections, behavioral style or just dumb luck? If you’re dreaming about being more successful, understanding your strengths and weaknesses is the first step to increasing your business.

1. The D-I combo
Target Training International (TTI) has one of the most widely used versions of the DISC Behavioral Styles Inventory. This instrument looks at your natural and your adapted behavioral styles in four "dimensions."

According to TTI, the behavioral profile of a successful salesperson is someone who scores above the 50th percentile on the "D" and the "I" factors. Only about 5 percent of the population has this profile. These individuals are best suited to being in sales.

People who score high on the "D," or dominance dimension, are usually hard-driving and aggressive, and seldom worry about rejection. Someone who scores high on this factor is usually willing to do whatever it takes to succeed. They have no problem cold-calling, door-knocking, or being told "no."

Agents who score high on the "D" factor without having a high score on the "I" factor are often brash and bottom line-oriented. They have no interest in bonding with their clients. As a result, many high-"D" agents fail to maintain relationships with their clients once the transaction closes. This means they don’t generate repeat and referral business.

People who score high on the "I" dimension are "people persons." They love being with others, are talkative, and have no trouble connecting with strangers. They meet new people easily and prefer face-to-face lead-generation activities. They are also likely to spend hours on social media hanging out with their friends.

If someone scores high on the "I" factor and has a low "D" factor, they will talk a lot about doing the activities that lead to success, but will have trouble actually getting around to doing them.

When an individual has both of these factors together, you have the perfect foundation for real estate sales success. The agent is a self-starter who moderates his/her high drive with consideration for others. They are persistent and will generate new leads through their prospecting activities while also building a strong referral database because of their people skills.

2. High utilitarian
Target Training International’s research shows that regardless of behavioral style, approximately 72 percent of all successful salespeople internationally score high on this factor. People who score high on the "Utilitarian" part of the PIAV (The Personal Interests, Attitudes and Value Scale) are practical and bottom line-oriented.

When presented with a problem, they examine the options for solving it and then choose the one that makes the most sense. Their eye is always on what it will take to achieve their goals.

3. How dependable are you?
Dependability is one of the most critical factors needed for real estate success. When agents are dependable, you can count on them to do what they say they will do, show up on time for appointments, and to follow up on what they promise.

They utilize their time wisely and keep focused on the job at hand. When agents lack dependability, they lack effective time-management skills, allow interruptions to disrupt important activities, and often fail to make good on what they promise.

4. Emotional resilience
To succeed in real estate, you must have a thick skin. When everything is falling apart, the agent who has emotional resilience stays calm and relaxed. Emotionally resilient agents do not allow difficult clients or crazy situations to get the best of them.

When things go wrong, they keep moving forward rather than dwelling on the negative. Agents with low emotional resilience, however, often succumb to the stress of the business and ultimately end up leaving it.

5. Are you achievement-oriented?
Psychological theorist David McClelland’s research documented a factor known as the "need for achievement." This is an internal drive for excellence independent of external forces.

Top performers are goal-oriented. They strive to outpace their personal best and to outperform other competitors. Agents with low achievement orientation do not feel the drive to compete or to perform at top levels.

While you can succeed in real estate without these characteristics, the agents who do exhibit these can have a much great chance at success. Clearly, if you are not a self-starter, you may find it hard to discipline yourself to do what is needed to succeed.

If you don’t like people, you will have problems generating leads and converting them. If you’re not dependable, you will be late for appointments, won’t follow up, and as a result, will not receive referrals on a regular basis. If you lack emotional resilience, you will be thwarted by rejection.

Humans are adaptable and capable of learning. You can learn to be more outgoing or dependable. You can learn how to handle rejection.

For those who have these five factors, however, a real estate sales career may be a perfect fit. For someone who lacks them, real estate sales success will be much more difficult to achieve.

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