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: What advice do you have for a
forty-something sales person changing careers? I am staying in sales, but
moving into a new field, and I am terrified. Thank you.
A: Fear is okay as long as it does not
consume you. I commend you for taking the leap and being willing to bring on a
new challenge in your career. Keep in mind that you are not new to sales just
new to this specific area. Sales is sales in so many ways. You know how to make
cold calls, develop leads, and bring new business through the door. What you
lack is product knowledge. My advice is to study, study, study. You need to
become an expert with the products you are representing and you also need to
know your competition. As you gain this perspective with the new industry, you
will also need to learn the ins & outs of your new company. Gaining an
understanding on who’s who and what’s what in the company will give you the
necessary insight to pave your own way. Last thing – they hired you because of
your skills. You have what it takes to be successful, the tools of the trade so
to speak, now have the confidence to apply those skills.