Great sales professionals are self-motivated, positive-minded, driven by competition and have a thick skin, undeterred by the word no. If you’re good at sales, or intend to be, these are some of the traits you bring to the table, and that enable you to cross thresholds in both work and life.
You have chosen a vocation that enriches you personally and professionally in several ways. Sales teaches you and helps you perfect a combination of skills that are rarely achieved through other professions.
1) You learn to negotiate: The great thing about working in sales is you can apply your skills and wisdom to all different facets of life, such as buying a car, a house or making any major investment. And it reaches far beyond investments. Negotiating is central to relationships, and it is part of accelerating your career. In sales, you learn to read people, turn negatives into positives and guide challenging situations to your advantage while satisfying the other parties, too. Learning and mastering the art of negotiation is the heart of sales, and life.
2) You experience continuous learning and professional growth: A successful career in sales demands that professionals stay on top of their industries, products, services, evolving customer needs, regulatory trends and competitor activities. It can mean adding credentials, certifications or education, or becoming a member of associations relevant to an industry, company or clientele. In our fast-changing global business environment, the ongoing knowledge and expertise you acquire make you more valuable to your employer and clients, and personally reward you with higher income potential and new career opportunities.
3) Your professional network multiplies: It could be said that the entire universe of professional and social networking platforms was created to enhance careers in sales. After all, selling is about making and maintaining connections. Today, these platforms are part of the multichannel approach to conducting business. In sales, you learn to market yourself and your expertise through LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and other platforms. Through the connections you make in these and other channels, you stay current on markets, the regulatory environment, what they are doing and how they influence buying decisions. For example, with health care initiatives on the Hill right now, there has been a spike in medical device sales and sales of utilities for hospitals. Connected sales professionals are in the right place at the right time.
4) You have limitless earning potential: Last but certainly not least is what drives most professionals to choose and excel in sales, and that is the freedom to determine your own income level. Depending on personal choice, there are different types of roles and compensation terms. Some jobs offer a base salary, and these roles are preferred by candidates who like stability. If you are determined to be among the top performers in your company or industry, look for a commissioned role. Many jobs offer both. The sales positions I typically fill offer a base salary and after the employee reaches a threshold in billings, commissions start kicking in. Think about your preferences and options.
There is really no cap to the commission you can earn, but it’s important to research during your job search and look to industries with promising futures where demand will stay strong. Some of the hottest industries for sales jobs currently include the medical, health care, energy, manufacturing and technology fields. And there are time-tested, secure industries to consider as well, such as consumer staples, engineering, retail, finance and many others.
How do you maximize all of these benefits?
During your job search, consider your personal interests, professional experience, industry knowledge and the competencies you have gained during your life and career. Do they point to a certain field or industry? If you like what you do and what you sell, the world will become your oyster and the benefits will follow.
Now is a good time to talk with a recruiter about your direction. Here’s one good reason. At Lucas Group, we deeply analyze résumés to see what’s there – and what isn’t. Talking with a candidate, and uncovering what isn’t on his or her résumé, often leads to industries and opportunities that aren’t even on the candidate’s radar. We are experts at this, and our reward is seeing candidates flourish through ideal placements.
I wish you tremendous success in your sales career, and in all facets of your life.
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