LSA Global Insights Newsletter: Is Your Sales Team Confidence High Enough to Succeed?

August 27, 2022

Is Your Sales Team Confidence High Enough to Succeed?

Confidence in Sales
Experienced sales managers know that their sales teams need competence and confidence to succeed. Nothing new or surprising there.

Sales team confidence needs to be high. And most salespeople are quite confident that they’re, well, confident.

But do you know just how incredibly important confidence is in selling complex solutions and what positive traits customers ascribe to salespeople who come across as confident?

What the Research Says
Here’s a research study from our sales microlearning experts that we weave into our customized business sales training workshops that answers that question.

A team at Carnegie-Mellon University set up an experiment in which volunteers tried to guess the weight of people shown in photographs. They were allowed to choose one of four “expert” advisers in making their guesses. The experts presented their advice by saying how likely it was that the people in the photos fell into a given weight range.

Who Did People Trust?
The researchers found that the guessers were more likely to take advice from experts who expressed closer to 100% certainty about a weight range. Experts who said, for example, “I’m 95% sure that man weighs between 170 and 175 pounds,” were favored over those who claimed, “I’m 85% sure that man weighs between 170 and 175 pounds.”

So, said the study, the more confident you appear, the more likely people are to see you as a credible expert and trusted business advisor.

The Even More Interesting Part
The research also showed that in successive rounds of the weight-guessing game, even after some of the experts had been shown to be wrong, participants were still more inclined to trust them as long as they continued to express high confidence in their advice.


This means that confidence can not only convey an impression of expertise, but it can also even take its place. Of course, nobody is saying salespeople should try to trick buyers with displays of phony confidence.

We found a few key lessons that integrity-based sales teams can apply today.


Rochana Golani
Director, Global Sales & Technical Field Enablement 
"The combination of targeted sales tools, coaching, performance plans, training, and reinforcement made all the difference.

I would highly recommend LSA Global for any sales enablement team looking to increase the engagement and speed-to-productivity of their sales force.

We are excited to implement the program globally as we continue to scale."
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