Top sales jobs are notoriously difficult to apply to—and even harder to get. Follow these 5 simple steps to learn how to land your dream sales job.
There are good sales jobs—and then there are crappy ones. I’ve seen both, first-hand. But there are also dream sales jobs out there for every salesperson.
In my work with hundreds of different organizations, I’ve seen the very broad spectrum of sales jobs out there. If you’re happy and well-paid at your current sales job, then great! Cherish the hell out of that job. A great sales job at a great company is a very special thing.
If, however, you’re currently in a crappy sales job, but you think you have what it takes to really crush it at a different company, in a different industry, or in a different role, then it’s time to find something new.
The key is to go into this process with some real strategy around sales jobs, just like you have a strategy around selling. You don’t want to just wing this process, and you certainly don’t want to use a shotgun approach by applying to just any job.
In this video, I’m going to show you how to land your dream sales job. Check it out:
Dream Sales Job Video Summary:
Dream Sales Jobs Tip #1: Figure out what your dream job actually is.
This step is key. You need to map out exactly what your dream job actually looks like. Answer questions like: What industry is it in? What products or services are you selling? What’s the typical company size that you’d like to be a part of? Is the job virtual or is it in the office?
Does that job have a lot of travel or just a little bit of travel? What’s the compensation like? Is it a big base or a smaller base with more commission? Who will you ultimately report to? What kind of a company culture do you want to be a part of? And what kinds of opportunities do you want to be given?
The first step to landing dream sales jobs is to get specific answers to all of those questions. Once you have that list, it’s time to come up with a list of 10 to 20 companies that fit your criteria. Definitely no more than that.
By the way, it doesn’t matter if they’re hiring right now; I don’t care. Be sure though to check their Glassdoor reviews, ask friends, and do your research just to make sure that it’s really the type of company you want to work at.
Dream Sales Jobs Tip #2: Focus your entire resume on achieving specific results.
A resume is incredibly important when applying for sales jobs. Having gone through thousands of them, I’ve noticed that they basically break down into two categories when it comes to salespeople: 1. Lots of wishy-washy bullshit. 2. Focused on achieving specific results.
If you haven’t accomplished anything specifically at your current or past jobs, then you might be in a little bit of trouble. You might want to hang in at your current job until you can have some specific results to point to. You need specific achievements that you can speak to in your resume if you want to apply for the best sales jobs out there.
Achievements like “exceeded quota every quarter” or “grew territory by 47%” or “exceeded sales goal by 28%” or “landed the three biggest accounts in our firm’s portfolio” will send you right to the top of the pack.
Dream Sales Jobs Tip #3: Stop reaching out to human resources.
When you’re applying to sales jobs, you should go directly to the decision makers. People in HR are well-intentioned but they don’t know the first thing about sales or hiring good salespeople.
In fact, I’m gonna say it: They’re really just glorified administrators. They’re also a waste of your time. They’re going to tell you to submit your resume through CareerBuilder, and then they’re never going to get back to you. And it has nothing to do with how good you are at selling; it’s just that you’re dealing with the wrong level of decision maker.
Most HR people will tell you that they’re currently not hiring, and this is almost always crap. Go straight to the source, such as the CEO or the VP of sales. I have literally never met a CEO or a VP of sales who doesn’t love to be pestered by a prospective sales hire.
It shows guts going straight to the source. And even if they pass you down to HR, now you’ve been referred in by the top dog. Senior leaders are going to love you for showing those kind of guts.
Dream Sales Jobs Tip #4: Treat it like a sale.
Let’s not mince words here: Landing dream sales jobs is just like closing sales. The people hiring you know this, so they are going to be looking to see how y
ou handle different situations. Treat the entire hiring process as if it’s a monster sales opportunity.
Get clear on next steps in the hiring process after each call that you have with them. Be aggressive in meetings to find out about their process. Ask tons of questions to show you know what you’re doing and that you’re interested. Make sure that they see you as the salesperson they wish were selling for them.
Dream Sales Jobs Tip #5: Research the hell out of them.
This is one piece that so many folks miss. Once you’ve actually got a solid opportunity you should know everything you can about the company you’re applying to. If they’re publicly held, then you should know tons from the details of their annual report, such as revenues, profit, key achievements, and benchmarks.
On the other hand, if they’re privately held, you want to go through every press release they’ve ever put out, and read all of the content that they have. Even go so far as to present them recommendations for how they might be able to improve their processes. Decision makers love this stuff.
Also, be sure that you’ve done your research on all the people that you’re meeting with. Know where they went to college, their hometown, their past jobs and anything else that you can find easily on LinkedIn or through a Google search. Show that you know what you’re doing.
So there you have it. That’s how to land your dream sales job. Which of these ideas did you find most useful? Be sure to share below in the comments section to get involved in the conversation.
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About the Author Marc Wayshak
Marc is is the best-selling author of three books on sales and leadership, including the highly acclaimed titles Game Plan Selling, The High-Velocity Sales Organization and his forthcoming book, Sales Conversations, Mastered.
Marc is a contributor to Inc, HubSpot, Fast Company, Entrepreneur Magazine, and Huffington Post Business. He also hosts a popular YouTube channel on sales strategy with over 103,000 subscribers.
Marc helps thousands of people his data-driven, science-based approach to selling that utilizes all the best tools available to sales organizations today.