Have you ever thought about what the biggest assets are, or will be, of your sales career?
Unfortunately no one tells you what these things are when you start out in sales – at least no one told me.
So I am going to tell you now, and maybe this will help you in your years to come in sales.
There are 3 big assets that one develops during a sales career in my opinion…
Your first asset is your Selling Skills
Knowing how to sell is a powerful asset. When you know how to sell you are no longer dependent upon anyone else to provide food, shelter, comfort and luxury to yourself and your family.
Someone who can sell, will always be able to at least make a living. And the wealthiest people in business often started out as sales people (or entrepreneurs who had to sell).
Your second asset is your Industry Knowledge
Knowing how a particular type of customer or business thinks and works is very valuable. As you sell to more and more businesses and people from the same industry, you learn how they think, what their problems and desires are, how they make decisions, what industry specific jargon they use, etc.
Industry Knowledge is only gained over time through experience of repeatedly selling into a particular industry.
As you arrive at the point where you know an industry inside out, you become very valuable to companies who need sales reps to sell into your industry. A rep who knows an industry and has good selling skills can hit the ground running and start producing business pretty fast.
Your third and biggest asset is your Customer Contacts
This is truly an asset that accumulates most over time for the outstanding sales rep.
If you focus yourself into a specific industry over a period of years, you will find that eventually you get to sell into some of the biggest accounts, some of the largest companies in your field. You will develop relationships with executives and decision-makers that you can call on again, and again whether you stay at your current company or move on to a new one.
And many people move around within an industry, so you’re the value of your contacts multiplies over time as you get to sell to them again and again over the years.
To get the most wealth and satisfaction from your sales career, you will need to maximize the value of these 3 sales career assets with a long term view in mind.
To make that a reality, I suggest the following:
1) Constantly develop and improve your sales skills. You want to strive perform as best as you can. And the better you perform, the better pick you will have of companies to work for and territories to choose from.
2) Choose an industry that you like, and stick with it. Liking an industry is important in my opinion. I think you need to like what you are selling and who you are selling with and to in order to get and stay motivated about it over time.
Changing industries can be very costly to your career because you essentially start over on developing industry knowledge AND customer contacts.
3) If you develop good selling skills and focus on and stick with a particular industry, then you will find it easy to maintain good long term relationships with customers in your industry. It will be a natural extension of being a good sales person
Much of this should be common sense. But no one told me this stuff, I had to figure it out through experience. Learn from my experience. Get focused on an industry and strengthen your sales skills today.
Sell with Pride,