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What I Wish I Knew Before Starting a Sales Job

By our Fabulous PAYS Spring 2022 Interns - Moriah Hopkins & Carter Albers

The start of 2022 has been a busy one for PAYS – new initiatives, updated strategies, and new employees. Inspired by the some time to reflect on our time at PAYS and the growth of both systems and people, we wanted to share a little bit of our experience in diving into the world of sales.

Carter Albers

There is so much that goes into sales and the whole “world” of sales. When I think about what I wish I knew, there is so much that comes to mind, but I have narrowed it down into a few thoughts.

First, let's talk about what I thought I was signing myself up for. There is the classic image that comes to mind when I think of sales, and it is the used car salesman. Someone who is super mean, trying to only steal your money, and does not actually care about you as a human being as long as they get paid. I had that super typical stereotype in mind - I thought salespeople were stubborn individuals who would trick you into making the worst financial decision possible.

Here's what I learned, though - sales does not have to be what it looks like on TV. In fact, it probably shouldn't... Its not a used-car salesman trying to scam you, and it does not have to people calling about your homes warranty. What it IS, is a genuine connection. The human relationship aspect of trying to solve needs with your product or service and helping another individual.

There is also a side of sales that is a delicate side. As I said, there is a lot more to it than the stereotyped old guy trying to talk you into buying a car with the full court press. No, sales is a craft. It's something you practice and refine daily. There should be an authentic side of how you sell.

People can quickly see through the facade of someone in sales not being themselves.

You also are always learning. If you're doing it right, you will probably never perfect sales. While you might nail certain parts of the sales process, things are always changing and you have to be ready to adapt and change as well.

The #1 thing I wish I knew before taking a sales role?

Here's the big learning for me: To be successful in sales, be yourself as much as possible.

Moriah Hopkins

Throughout my undergrad degree, I always avoided sales as much as I could. We all know that salespeople have a bad stereotype of being pushy, and it was something I never really saw myself being able to do. But, like Carter mentioned, that stereotype doesn’t fit in the work that we do.

We are all about building relationships and truly helping the people we reach out to – which makes it even harder to hilight what I wish I would have known...

Before getting into sales, I wish I had known just how much people don’t want to be sold to!

Connectivity is hard to come by, so when we finally get the chance to talk with someone it’s a tough pill to swallow when they don’t want to engage. Trying to convey that we really want to help people is a challenge, but when it works it is so fulfilling! When it comes to sales, if you don’t have thick skin and high confidence, you’ll quickly develop it! I've learned that finding the little wins to keep you going is key. It’s definitely a challenging process of growing, but in time you realize that the anxiety about picking up the phone resides, the objections aren’t as daunting, and the wins feel a little sweeter.

Even though there may be some hard times facing the rejections and objections people throw at you, having a great team working around you makes it all worth it! Sales can be a grind; there can be great days where everything is smooth sailing and there can be days where you feel like you just can’t win. Sharing laughs after a rough call or getting meaningful feedback makes the day feel lighter.

When I think about things I wish I had known before starting, I can’t help but think of all of the different things I have learned since starting. Every single day holds a new lesson that we all know we will take into our future careers and our lives, and for that, I know I’m grateful!

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