Working in sales is not for the faint-hearted. You have to be comfortable with rejection and willing to go the extra mile in pursuit of a sale, but the rewards often justify the long hours and zillions of business miles. Most sales jobs pay a base salary topped up by commission, so successful salespeople can earn a lot of money. If this sounds like an amazing career path, read on for some tips to help you decide whether a career in sales is right for you.
For some people, working in sales is a natural career choice. They have a silver-tongue and could sell ice to Eskimos. For most of us, however, some kind of sales training course is required – check out the link for some suitable options.
But before you reach that level of commitment, it is worth thinking about whether you have the personal qualities required to work in a high-pressure sales position.
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Are You Competitive?
Sales is a very competitive business. Whatever you are selling, there will be targets to reach and other salespeople to beat. Without a strong competitive streak, it won’t be easy to motivate your flagging spirits to make yet another cold call to an unreceptive director’s PA.
If you are the type of person who will do whatever it takes to get ahead, a career in sales is probably a good choice.
Are You a Good Listener?
Don’t make the mistake of thinking that successful salespeople are loud, brash, and obnoxious. They are invariably the exact opposite. Great salespeople are excellent listeners. They stay quiet and listen to what the client wants and needs, and then do their utmost to angle the pitch to suit.
Sales is not for you if you always have to have the last word and talk over everyone else in the room.
Are You Confident?
Salespeople need a healthy degree of self-confidence. It isn’t easy making cold calls, being told to get lost by tetchy secretaries and office managers or listening to a client rip your pitch to shreds. Successful salespeople are confident and robust. They have no problem picking themselves up after a tough day and getting back out there again.
Don’t take a sales job if you burst into tears the minute someone tears a strip off you. You won’t last five minutes on the competitive world of sales.
Are You Persistent?
It can take a great deal of effort to turn a cold call into a hot lead. And from there, a sale. You must be persistent and willing to push ahead, despite the odds being stacked against you.
Are you super motivated? Do you always finish a task, even when the going gets tough? If so, working in sales could be your dream job.
Good sales training will give you the finer skills you need, but you must have the right personal qualities to begin with. If you tick all of the above boxes, a career in sales is a smart move. If not, go back to the drawing board.