Job Title: Inside Sales Representative
Type of Company: My company provides corporate training in Leadership/Management, Communications, Project Management, Business Analysis, Lean Six Sigma, IT and Business Process Management to organizations and individuals.
Education: BS, Business
Previous Experience: I started out as an administrative assistant in a sales group and later moved to inside sales.
Job Tasks: I help companies improve the skills of their employees. On a typical way I would speak with a company representative to learn about the specific group that needed training. I would ask him how many people were in the group, what their backgrounds were and what training they'd had. I would then try to discover what challenges the group was facing that affected the way they worked. Armed with all this information, I would try to identify areas of training that could help them improve their performance and productivity. I would then get together with my corporate account executive to estimate costs, come up with training dates and work out a contract to set up the program.
Best and Worst Parts of the Job: The best part of my job is speaking with new businesses on a daily basis, learning about their products and the challenges they face. And later, knowing that I have helped find them a solution to their challenges is very rewarding.
The worst part of the job is the long hours sitting in my cube. To offset this I try to take frequent walks.
Job Tips: Shadow someone in outside sales within the company you would work for. Go on client appointments, listen in on conference calls, take notes on what was effective in a given presentation. Learn to listen and ask questions and gather the information you need to make a recommendation. Listening is key. There are workshops available to help improve your listening skills which are worth taking. Learn persistence. Keep following up with phone calls, white papers, articles, webinars. Or just say hi; it sometimes takes 7 to 10 times before you can connect with a prospect but it's well worth the investment in time.
Additional Thoughts: What has surprised me most is if you a passion for your work and your clients and remain persistent, you can really improve your earnings potential.
I would not change how I approached my career because every step was a building block towards learning. The most important personal qualities for success are persistence, learning to really listen and understand where the client is going. Also taking time to get to know your clients and to show them you care and get on a first name basis really helps with credibility. Become a member of a networking group so that you can have resources.
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