When I started recruiting 2 years ago I made a transition from sales to recruiting. One thing I was not prepared for when dealing with candidates was the stigmas associated with sales. Through my development I have learned a number of things regarding sales careers and wanted to share my advice on what to think about when contemplating a sales role.
First and foremost I acknowledge that a career in sales is not the correct path for everyone but if you are on the fence about sales here are some things you might consider:
- Not all sales executives are slimy and sleazy. In fact my best candidates are often sales candidates. It is not your ability to deceive your clients that make you a sales rep it is about your presence, tenacity, and ability to overcome objections.
- If you have been motivated by goals in the past sales may be the right career for you. Goal-oriented people are going to love the challenge of sales. This is something companies focus on heavily, meeting goals and quotas. Look at your past history: If your life is measured in accomplishments this is a career to look into further.
- Cold calling is a necessity and an art. Cold calling is always the first thing my candidates tell me they don’t want to do. Often times my candidates will compare cold calling to the sales person that calls and interrupts a family dinner and wont take no for an answer. Don’t let that be the standard for all cold calls. It truly is an essential part to setting up meetings and showcasing your company to the client; do it with gusto. Also remember that your first few weeks you are not going to be the best at running cold calls, it takes time to develop and to figure out how you will present yourself best as a sales rep over the phone. When I think about cold calling I always tell myself that the business I am calling is also selling a product or service so while they may not want to talk to me now I have a valuable service that they need. Don’t let cold calling be the only thing that keeps you from a sales role.
- No two days will be the same. This is one thing that sales triumphs in above other opportunities. You will constantly be changing and developing yourself as an employee by meeting new clients and hearing new objections. It keeps you on your toes and allows you to grow professionally.
- You set your own paycheck. This is an amazing feeling, the ability to look at what you earned and understand that it is a direct reflection of how hard you have worked. Money motivated people do well in sales because they can see the end result with each call they make and each meeting they perform.
- A sales rep is in constant communication with other people. A sales rep gets to be in the trenches working with people in their day to day. The variety of people you get to work with is constantly changing from your teammates to your clients. If you are outgoing, love meeting new people this just may be the career for you.
If you think you are interested in pursuing a career in sales my final advice is find a quality company. This can be extremely challenging when looking into sales roles but I encourage you to do lots of research on the company that is interviewing you. If you can find a company that promotes growth and will invest in you the way you are going to invest your time and commitment into a sales career you are starting on the right track.
Once again not everyone is right for sales but these are some things I tell my candidates to think about if they are contemplating pursuing a career in sales as it can be a very lucrative career.
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