Case Study

Leading internet marketing agency

Creating a high-performing online sales team

Leading internet marketing agency


The client was a leading internet marketing agency based in Reading, UK. In an increasingly competitive market, the client was keen to identify what would mark out high-performing salespeople and retained Strengthscope to pinpoint those strengths which were most important in driving up sales performance, in order to recruit the best possible salespeople into post.

Our solution

In order to identify the most important strengths for the online marketing sales role, the Strengthscope research team strengths profiled 101 salespeople using the Strengthscope® assessment and identified those unique qualities which marked out the high sales performers from the rest, as well as the reasons why, using a range of performance data (including online advertising sales and lead generation metrics) gathered over a 6 month period.

The strengths identified in this unique role as most predictive of high performance were:

  • Empathy – helpful in understanding the client’s context, needs and challenges
  • Critical thinking – identifying solutions that map precisely onto the client’s needs
  • Common sense – enabling recruits to follow the company’s sales processes

Research showed that it was also important to watch out for candidates who reported Self-confidence but who were unaware of its risks, i.e. those people who were prone to over-confidence and arrogance, as this ‘strength in overdrive’ was found to predict poor sales performance.

The combination of these strengths was found to be highly predictive of sales performance for this role, particularly when combined with a strengths-based interview to explore candidates’ knowledge of, and previous effective use of, their strengths.


  • The recruitment team used the approach for some years, finding that it was an excellent predictor of sales performance.
  • The recruitment approach formed part of the company’s successful turnaround from 2011-2014, following acquisition. For the last two years, the client has appeared in the Top 30 best places to work survey on Glassdoors and achieves consistently strong advocacy from its employees.

Following on from this study, the client’s recruitment team was trained in the use of Strengthscope® and Strengthscope proprietary ‘OPAL’ approach to strengths-based interviewing in order to identify high performing salespeople at point of selection.