Dear Devil, can I interest you in these spectacular ice sculptures?
January 17, 2007 1:51 PM   Subscribe

I'd like to get into sales. What are the best methods by which to break into the industry without prior experience?

And to make it clear, I mean corporate sales.

I've been told time and again I have all the faculties to make a very successful salesman (outgoing personality, always on the move, etc.), and after thinking it through, it's definitely a field I'd like to tackle. The problem is I don't know where to start.

Some background: I have a BA in Communications and worked the past couple years serving tables, in retail management, and personal training.

If it helps, I also reside in the Bay Area.
posted by Mach3avelli to Work & Money (4 answers total)
Be as hungry as possible.

Selling things can be learned. But companies, and specifically sales managers, do not want to waste the time training you if you are not *hungry* to earn money. You should come across as greedy in the interview. Not "win no matter the stakes / unethical", but definitely out for yourself and you can be unapologetic about it.

I have never worked in sales, nor hired sales people, so I won't give any other advice.
posted by zpousman at 2:03 PM on January 17, 2007

As the VP of Sales for a creative agency, my best recommendation would be to start by looking for a sales support position. It'll give you the opportunity to learn an industry and associated products, write proposals and go out on sales calls. From there its much easier to move into active sales. Alternatively you can jump into the deep end and take a low salary, but incentive driven, position... and basically sink or swim. But I wouldn't recommend that.

On a side note, as a salesman make sure you love the product/service you're selling. That's really one (of three) secrets of sales. Enthusiasm is contagious, and if you love what you sell so will your customers. Oh, and by the way, the other two secrets are have fun and remember that no one knows more than you do (they just pretend to).
posted by tundro at 2:15 PM on January 17, 2007

I second the sales support position.
posted by Octoparrot at 6:21 PM on January 17, 2007

I third the sales support position.

I would also suggest that you highlight any soft skills you might have. You can do this on your resume's objective statement or in the cover letter. These are both good ways to let the resume reader know some of your other traits/qualities that they might be searching for in candidates.

I have just googled a few places to find this info out. I also suggest that trying to get the recruiter or HR decision maker on the phone and speak to them directly.

posted by coryjojobob at 10:35 AM on March 8, 2007

« Older The question of a second child   |   How can I become a trader? Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.