I am fascinated by what people think sales is about.
- Easy Money?
- Easy Work? (Just play golf all day)
- You were told you were a natural because you talk a lot
- You can’t find a job so you go into sales
- You take a job selling until a good job comes along
It’s easy money. That’s what a lot of people think selling is. How many times have you talked to someone and that thinks that all salespeople do is drive around all day? If that were only true.
Selling is hard work. Prospecting, making phone calls, making appointments, having meetings, being told “we’re not interested”, building proposals, and more. A salesperson spends their day working to get in front of good prospects. Then they spend their evenings putting together proposals they hope will be excepted. Many days go from daylight to well past dark.
Just talk and play golf. That’s all a salesperson does all day. Nothing to it. If only that were true.
Selling is hard work. Not only are the days long, but the cost to the salesperson can be large. All the selling jobs I’ve had required me to furnish my own car, my own phone, pay motel bills, gas, etc. If you drive 4000 miles per month, the expenses can add up fast. Sure, the expenses can be deducted from your taxes but you have to pay the money upfront. Thousands are spent only to wait a year to file your taxes.
You talk a lot. You’re a natural
Many people think that selling is just talking a lot. Lots of conversations get around to someone saying, “You know, Johnny would make a good salesman. He sure can talk a lot.” If only that were true
Selling is hard work. Selling is more about active listening, not talking. Listening is hard because listening requires paying attention and paying attention requires engagement, and engagement requires a desire to help, and a desire to help requires loving your work.
Yes, there are some “smooth-talking” salespeople but I found them to be short-lived in sales. It’s hard to have repeat customers if they feel short-changes or even cheated.
I’m looking for a position
Positions are few and far between and are hard to find. Especially ones that pay six or seven figures for little work. So you go into sales. It’s easy and with little work, you can make a killing. If only that were true.
Selling is hard work. I can’t count the number of people I’ve interviewed for sales jobs who couldn’t find a job in their degree of Underwater Basket Weaving, so they think to themselves, “I’ll go into sales because that is the only choice open to me.” My advise. Go back to school.
I’ll take a sales job until a good offer comes in
Very few have stumbled into sales and excelled in the profession.
Selling is hard work. And yes, sales is a profession and a good one at that. I’m proud to have been in sales most of my adult life. I met a lot of great people, served many wonderful customers that became friends, and was able to advance in the field many times.
If you go into sales looking for an out… well, let’s just say you might hold off on that. It is difficult to find success as a salesperson if your heart isn’t fully vested in the profession. It can be a wonderful career, so enjoy it.
Be a Part of the 20%
In selling, there is a definite division of the 80-20 rule. 80% of the sales are done by 20% of the people and the remaining 20% is provided by 80% of the salespeople. If you desire to be a salesperson, strive to be part of the 20% that produces the majority of a business’s sales.
I know there are other reasons people go into sales and the answer I have is the same. Selling is hard work but is very rewarding. If you go into it as a serious profession, you will enjoy life and find fulfillment.