the past few years, since I began using this weekly blog to share stories about
sales and sales management, I have been receiving numerous questions from
readers including my own clients. Over the next several months I am going to
use my weekly ramblings to post one reader question with my answer. Please note
– my answers are based on my personal and professional experiences and in no
way reflect my company or specific clients.
Q: In need of a little help – I’m trying
to explain to a few young sales interns that a career in sales is not a 9-5 job.
What can a sales rep in a professional services organization expect?
A: Mary, you hit the nail on the head,
sales is most certainly not a 9-5 job, especially in a professional services
organization. In fact, I’d go so far as to say it is a 100% job, meaning you
are always in sales mode.
So many young sales people believe sales
starts when they arrive to work and ends when the leave to go home for the day.
If that belief sticks with them for too long, they will fall into the trap of
being nothing more than a B- sales person. True A level sales people understand
that you take work home with you in the form of reading, studying, researching,
planning, reviewing, proposal prep and writing, etc. You simply cannot get
everything done during any given work day and thus you must be willing to take
work home to stay on top of your sales.
Additionally, there are networking
events in the evening. Industry trade shows or conferences to attend out of
town. Weekend sales team building programs. And, of course, even on your own
personal time, you’ll most likely run into a prospective or existing client. You’ll
need to always have your game face on and be willing to jump right into sales