4 Misconceptions About Working In Sales

4 Misconceptions of Salespeople bear bull co consulting best sales trainer sales coach more sales less turnover

Ever notice that some folks have a skewed view of life about those in sales? Considering how you are depicted on some reality TV shows, that’s understandable.  A career in sales includes a broad spectrum of professions, many of which are depicted as lavish lifestyles with big incomes. These portrayals undoubtedly bring in higher television ratings than your average Joe Schmoe.

While those shows are entertaining, they can create a lot of misconceptions about being in sales. We’re ready to clear those up right now.

Misconception #1: This job is easy.

Consider your daily challenges: marketing your product or service , managing a huge client database, and supervising negotiations. Add in the stress of a commission-based income or mandatory sale quotas, and you can understand why few salespeople say their jobs are “easy.”

Products or services do not just sell themselves. Even if the buyer walks into your showroom, or inquires online,  there is no guarantee that they are going to buy or sign the dotted line.  Some presentations are easier than others. Some buyers sign without hesitation.  It is the salesperson that closes the gap between inquiry and purchase.

Misconception #2: You get paid a lot.

Depending on what you sell, you drive around in flashy cars, live in mansions, and are up to your eyeballs in million-dollar deals, right?

7-figure incomes are not the norm among sales professionals. The average gross income for professional sales people who worked 40-59 hours a week was $57,789. That’s a solid income, but not enough to support a warehouse full of Ferrari’s or a palatial vacation home.

You quickly learn that a comfortable income is within reach, but that just selling isn’t the quick and easy road to riches.

Misconception #3: Your schedule is super-flexible.

Most sales pros aren’t held to the “Monday-Friday, 8-5” routine. You generally have some flexibility to work at the times and locations you see fit.

This doesn’t mean you can abandon the office for days on end or vacation at a moment’s notice. Clients have demands and busy lives as well, and many expect you to cater to their schedules. Buyers may want an immediate showing, a test drive, or a webinar to learn more about your product or service.

At the end of the day, you can choose how flexible and responsive you want to be. But as success follows hard work, so too must you follow your client’s needs.

Misconception #4: You don’t need any training to do this job.

We’ll counteract that myth with a simple statement: salespeople are a well-educated crowd.

Your profession is known for an affinity towards self improvement. Many salespeople hold bachelors degrees. It isn’t uncommon for sales people to voluntarily take additional courses in psychology, economics, sociology, communications and business administration. Some companies and licensed sales professions require you to complete continuing education courses every few years. These may be mandated by a government body or by the company you work for.

The reality is…

Just like any other profession, being in sales has its highs and lows. It’s not a get-rich-quick scheme, or an easy career for someone without the proper training.

If you love personal interaction, marketing, working in sales can be incredibly rewarding. There is an amazing sense of satisfaction when you connect a buyer with a problem to a product or service that offers them a solution.

– Paul


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