Sales gets a bad rap - and before you say anything, I know it's mostly deserved. Most of us have had experience of a bad salesperson, I think that sales people break down into 7 types - 6 you want to avoid and 1 that is worth dealing with.

The Product Vomiter - Excuse the horrible connotations, but we have all interacted with this person. This is the salesperson that has so much to say about what they do that they pay no attention to you, your needs, or any feedback you give them. This salesperson lives to talk at people.

The Never say Die - Another irritating one - he has you flagged in his database as a lead and is unaware that you first interacted with his company 7 years ago and ended up buying something else, since then you have moved to a different department but he hasn't twigged. He'll call regularly to "touch base". Mildly annoying and won't give up, no matter what you say. Will still be calling for you 3 years after you left.

The Pusher - Doesn't listen, has never listened and has a 3,000 page playbook of "good" reasons why people should buy what she is selling. If you asked her, she would tell you her best skill is "objection handling" and will continue to push even if your objection is that you recently retired, moved to France and taken up home wine making.

The Submissive - Not as irritating as the pusher, but still a bit of a pain. This person has your name in a CRM and loves nothing more than to call you, find out you don't want to buy anything, agree with whatever you say and tell you that they will call next month. This will go on forever unless you change your phone number.

The Wideboy - This horror has had success in the past using his dominant personality to bully people into buying from him. Has never asked a question in his life and isn't going to start now. If Wideboy thinks you need what he sells, he will persue you relentlessly. Likely to get stroppy and even be rude if you don't want what he's selling and has skin so thick that bullets would bounce off - unfortunately this skin also covers his ears.

Miss Fire and Forget - She was great at the start, asked all the right questions, helped with your problem to the point where you committed your budget, involved the appropriate people and bought from her. You never heard from her again, even if you wanted to buy another one.

The Helper - is actually (can you believe it?) motivated by trying to help people. Conversations with this person are useful and they will quite happily tell you if there is nothing they can do for you. The buying process is easy because they want to understand your problem and are skilled enough and interested enough to help you get right to the crux of the issue. They are unlikely to even mention products or services until you both have a clearly defined idea of how to solve your problem.

Selling has changed to the point where salespeople should more accurately be called Buying Consultants, or Needs Architects, because the buyer is firmly in charge of the process and their needs are what is important. Today's buyer is likely to have researched their problem and most of the possible solutions online or through connections. They will probably have tried to solve their problem themselves and not been successful and only then will they start an interaction with sales.

As a salesperson of many years, I have managed, hired and even (sorry) been most of these people, depending on which boss and sales trainer is working with me. I suspect if you work in sales, you have too (but you don't have to admit it). The key to winning as a salesperson is to embrace the fact that the buyer has changed, marketing has changed and the internet can very easily make a liar out of you. We need to change and adapt to the new normal, understand how our buyers buy, and stop "touching base", bullying and vomiting our product knowledge.