If you’re considering a sales career path, the first thing you need to know is that most sales jobs aren’t for the faint of heart. They’re often easy to find and tough to hold onto, even for the most promising sales professionals. Sales teams turnover at a rate of 40% a year, so how can you keep that job once you have it?
Most sales recruitment agencies will tell you that the top quality they look for in a potential hire is persistence. Only 20% of sales leads are ever followed up, but many sales will only occur after several follow ups. Show that you have the tenacity to stick with a tough client even when they’re trying to give you the slip and you should go far.
Meet Your Quota
It’s not easy, especially starting out, but do everything you can to meet your quota. An estimated 40% of sales professionals in North America will miss quota, so just by making your goal for the week every week, you’ll put yourself above almost half of your competition. Stay focused, stay persistent, and make those sales.
Even if you make quota as often as you can, there are still likely to be times when you just can’t make it. When that happens, don’t make excuses. Chances are you have valid excuses (the quota went up unexpectedly, or you just had a really bad week of clients, and so on) but listing all the reasons you couldn’t make quota doesn’t make a good impression. Try to own the fact that you missed it this time and focus on what you’ll do better next time.
Be a Team Player
Even if sales recruitment agencies often look for the most ambitious individuals, it’s the person who’s willing to put the team ahead of themselves that will usually stick around the longest. The best sales recruitment agencies look for good communicators who are honest with their co-workers, since they’ll usually benefit the whole team.
Doing all of these things won’t just help you keep your job. It will help you stay motivated at your job. It’s not the worst thing to move onto better prospects if you’re hitting a wall at your current job, but working in the same place for a long time can have its perks as well. Figure out what works best for you!