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Hiring in Sales: 7 Qualities to Look for in Your Next Sales Development Rep (SDR)

3 min
qualities of an SDR: Slintel

Hiring in Sales: Seven Qualities to Look for in Your Next Business Development Rep 

Are you looking for the perfect business development representative (BDR) for your team? It’s never easy, finding the right person for the job — but with a few key qualities in mind, you can make sure you hire the right fit.

Let’s explore seven essential qualities you should look for when hiring a BDR, and how these qualities can help you build a successful sales team.

What is a BDR?

A BDR is “the tip of the spear” for anyone introduced to the company’s revenue team. Inbound or outbound, these reps are the first people prospects meet and talk to.

Hiring the wrong BDRs can be costly. One bad impression, and you’ve burned a potential key account with long-term revenue effects. It’s essential to make sure you hire the right person for the job.

Seven Qualities to Look for in a BDR

1. Curiosity

An ideal BDR should have a probing mindset. They should ask the right questions at the right time to gain a thorough understanding of their prospects’ needs and challenges. This characteristic isn’t something great BDRs are born with; this is a quality that can be found, forged, and improved with training.

Curiosity also leads to new ideas and innovation — something every company values.

2. Coachability

A BDR must be able to take criticism well. A successful BDR has raw talent that can be molded and honed into becoming the best they can be.

3. Clear Communication

It’s the number one skill you should be looking for in a BDR. They need to know how to put their point across clearly and concisely. Good communication is essential to get the value of the product across to potential customers.

4. Tech Savviness

Nowadays, many products operate in the cloud, especially if they’re offered by tech companies or B2B SaaS organizations. A BDR should be comfortable using CRM and sales prospecting software, and have a knack for using social media. They should also be interested in tech updates surrounding their industry.

5. Respect

When hiring a BDR, look for someone who’s respectful of the boundaries and culture of your office. A toxic environment can bring down the morale of the entire team, so it’s important to hire someone with the right attitude.

6. Resilience

Rejection is part of a BDR’s job. It takes multiple unsuccessful attempts to connect to a buyer. To be a great BDR, you need to have resilience to this form of rejection. Otherwise you’ll lose your passion and your work will suffer.

7. Long-Term Commitment

Also, look for someone who is in it for the long haul. SDRs are the heart of the sales team, so it’s important to find someone who’s committed and willing to go the extra mile.

How to Find the Right SDR

Now that you know the qualities to look for in an SDR, let’s discuss how to go about finding the right person.

The interview process is a great way to get an idea of the candidate’s qualities. Pay attention to the questions they ask about your company, annual targets, and their growth trajectory — these questions indicate that they are inquisitive and keen to have a thorough understanding of what they’re getting into.

You can also get the candidate to talk to your team, not just the senior most people, but people who might turn out to be colleagues and coworkers. Ask your team for feedback after the interview to see how the candidate treated them.

Finally, you can ask the candidate to complete a sales pitch or task. Give them feedback on their work and pay attention to how they respond.


Hiring the right SDR is essential for a successful sales team. It’s hard to find people who have all the traits needed for a good SDR. 

But a mix of a few is good. If you hire a healthy number, you can train and learn. Here’s to all the hiring managers, sales heads, and sales directors who’ll hire new SDRs. We hope you find the perfect candidate!

The 6sense Team

6sense helps B2B organizations achieve predictable revenue growth by putting the power of AI, big data, and machine learning behind every member of the revenue team.

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