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Which Generation is Best at Selling?

Conventional wisdom says that sales reps need a certain amount of seasoning before they can perform at the highest levels. But there's also the theory that youth and energy are the keys to selling in today's fast-paced business world.

Which is it?

You vote, then I'll give you the scientific answer.


Click here to get the scientific answer »



The correct answer is "Gen X Reps".

According to a recent survey of 236 sales professionals conducted by a firm called Generational DNA, 42% of Gen X reps exceeded their sales targets in 2008, followed by 37% of Gen Y reps pros, and trailed by Boomer reps at 32%.

When it came to meeting sales targets, there was very little difference between the three groups. And for failing to hit targets, Boomer reps, at 32%, were most likely to miss quota, followed by Gen X reps at 22% and Gen Y reps at 14%.

Before you run out and fire all the Boomers, you might want to consider the sales environments in which Boomers typically work.

The survey also revealed that Boomers were 4.5 times more likely than Gen Yers (and half again as likely as Gen Xers) to have yearly quotas in excess of $3 million.

In other words, the reason that Boomers might not be exceeding their quotas (and failing to meet their quotas) is that they've got more ambitious quotas to start with.

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