So you've made the decision to go into sales. Congrats! It's an awesome choice. Now you just have to figure out how to get your future sales job. You know you want to get into sales but you don't quite know how to get started. Getting that stellar future sales job that you're hoping for isn't going to be as easy as charming your way into a company. You're going to have to buckle down, learn, research, prepare, and get out into the sales world. Follow the seven steps to get on your way to scoring your future sales job.
1. Sales Knowledge
You're going to need a solid sales foundation in order to sell yourself to a potential employer. Expand your sales knowledge by reading books on the subject, joining message boards online, reading blogs, going to seminars, and watching training videos. Educate yourself on the current buying and selling trends and the latest selling techniques, so you can prove your knowledge and get that sales job.
Sales is competitive so you need to show potential employers that you have the education required to keep up in today's market. Having a business, marketing, or communications degree will do well in sales, but they're not totally necessary. Taking night courses or training seminars about inbound selling, thought leadership, or other classes related to selling can also be valuable.
In order to be seen, known, and remembered, you'll need to network. If you've decided which industry you want to work in, find some events nearby and start networking. You'll meet some influential people who might be able to get you an interview, mentor you, or give you some valuable tips about how to get that sales job. Either way, being seen and remembered can be beneficial when you're searching for a sales job. Don't forget about the web either. A lot of networking can be done on social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Join groups and conversations, and get chatting with people in the industry. Having a strong social presence is important for networking in today's business world.
Once you have your eyes set on a few companies with sales job openings, research them until there's nothing left to learn. Figure out what their business goals are, what their sales strategies are, and what their business philosophy and ethical and moral standards are. Learn everything there is to know about their products or services. Search for their competitors and understand where they fit into the industry. You'll want to dissect all this information in order to find out if you actually want to work there, if you'll be a good fit in their environment, and if you can bring anything valuable to the table.
5. Understand What You Offer
Once you know what the companies are about, find out what you're about as a sales person. You'll need to sell yourself, your skills, and your experience to get the sales job, so you need to prepare ahead of time. What is your selling philosophy? Which selling approaches will you use? What can you bring to the company that is unique? Why is it worth the risk for them to hire you?
Timing is everything when searching for a sales job. Remember that you will seem most valuable if you are already employed while searching. What's more, you'll need to time your interviews and job offers to make sure you don't accept a so-so sales job before your dream job comes along.
7. The Interview
The interview is where you can really put all your new sales knowledge to practice. Think of it as a sales call, and what you're selling is yourself. Show off those personality traits that will make you a great sales rep and dazzle the interviewers with the sales information and company knowledge you now have.