Is a career in sales really that wonderful – Part 1

The career journey of a sales professional is often filled with hazard and risk. There are significant unknowns, and outcomes are never guaranteed. You can face several risks in a sales career that have the potential to wipe out many of the pluses outlined in prior flash briefings about the wonderful world of sales. 

Here’s an example. 

Jeffrey joined a large solution provider as a territory sales professional. In his prior roles he had enjoyed success and delivered very good performance. He was confident that he was ready for this next step. When assigned his territory, Jeffrey quickly noticed that many of the customer accounts handed to him were previously covered by another salesperson who was recently terminated for poor performance. After completing a triage to determine the best accounts to target, Jeffrey concluded that most of these accounts were not handled well—there were few solid relationships and even fewer real sales opportunities. 

Jeffrey knew that he was starting from scratch, but he did find one account that appeared viable, and he felt he could build it up into a strategic opportunity. Jeffrey then spent the entire year building relationships, establishing executive sponsors, and developing a strong value proposition. Before the year’s end, Jeffrey won an eight-figure deal that placed him at 400% of quota. 

He was flying high. In addition to cashing several large commission checks, he won the award for top producer in his region. 

The best part was that because the solution would be rolled out over time, Jeffrey would be able to identify additional revenue potential in this account that was nearly as large as the initial win. Jeffrey’s plan was to focus the next year on advancing these additional opportunities while he cashed more large commission checks. 

I’m DJ Sebastian, and stay tuned for the next briefing where we will tell you the rest of Jeffrey’s story.