How to Get into Sales

Many people are selling right now and they don’t even realize it. You see, I believe that anyone can sell. You just need the right attitude and the right training to get into sales.

“He was born with the gift of gab; a born salesman.” “I’m just not a people-person, so I could never sell.” “He’s a great salesman. He never takes no for an answer.”

I’ve heard these all before. Not about me. At least I hope not. These are things I have heard about salespeople or the sales profession over the years, and always from someone that didn’t truly understand sales.


Making the Career Change to Sales

In this time of layoffs, furloughs and business closings, individuals are finding themselves “between jobs”. Some of them will return to the same or similar position they held before, but others will see the need to change careers completely, and some may choose to get into sales.

It’s really not such a huge leap to go from a production job to a sales job. After all, you’ve been building widgets for years and you know every facet of a widget, where a widget can be used, who would need a widget, what the strengths and weaknesses of a widget are, and what other companies also make widgets. Now, you would take that vast knowledge and share it with a buyer that you know could use a widget.


The Importance of Sales Onboarding Training

If you already have successful sales experience, you can be trained on another company’s products and strategies, and then just successfully pick up with your new company where you left off with your last position. Obviously, the quicker that your onboarding training is, the quicker you will start producing for your new employer.

If you have no history in sales, you’ll need to be onboarded on the company products and strategies, but you will also need some basic sales training. When I said I believe that anyone can sell, I didn’t mean that they can automatically be successful from the start. Some basic training is necessary.


The Basics of Basic Sales Training

You can’t always just approach a buyer, show them your product and get the sale. Every salesperson on the planet wishes it were that easy. You need to:

  • Perfect your elevator pitch.
  • Create a sales process.
  • Perfect your questioning techniques to uncover unmet needs.
  • Sharpen your presentation skills.
  • Know how to overcome objections.
  • Be able to identify the different personality types of DISC and how to treat each of them.
  • Know how to prepare for a sales call, how to actively listen during that sales call, when to speak up, when to shut up, when to push, when to back away, and when and how to close the deal.

Sound overwhelming? It’s not! I promise. The key to getting into sales is training, probably the same amount of training you needed for your last job.


Will You Be Considered for a Sales Position Without Having Any Sales Experience?

As a hiring manager and a sales trainer, I have seen the resumes of candidates that were interested in a sales position at my company. My #1 objection to hiring someone when they don’t have sales experience is that they will require a lot of my time for their training.

Present to me a candidate that has taken the time to train their self on the basic sales skills, and I will interview and consider them alongside the candidates that have years of experience. Why? Because they just showed they will do whatever it takes to overcome my #1 objection. I want someone like that on my team.

Check out our blog post "How to Get an Entry-Level Job with No Experience." We give you practical tips on how to tie your past experience to the job description for that sales job you are applying for. The job search process is really all about selling your skills so this is the perfect place to start demonstrating your knack for selling. 


Additional Resources

If you really want to get into sales, you need to be proactive and take advantage of content that is out there to help you be more familiar with the selling process. The resources below will help you start learning the language of sales so you will be better prepared when you start interviewing.

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