Like just about everything else in our society, the job market has seen significant changes in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic.
With an explosion in remote work, a shifting of priorities in the workplace, and a mass job exodus that is being called The Great Resignation, it looks as if the landscape of the working world is going to be forever altered. Those looking to enter that world are going to have to stay on top of these shifting trends in order to succeed.
The good news is that anyone looking for a job in sales can actually stand to benefit from all of the upheavals in the post-pandemic job market.
The Great Resignation has led to a large number of sales job vacancies, which not only means that your odds of landing that dream job are higher, but also that you may have a bit of leverage in negotiating your salary and other aspects of the job should you prove to be a desirable candidate.
That last bit is quite important, though. You’re still going to need to prove that you are a qualified, competent, and desirable candidate if you want to score that dream job.
To help you do that, we’ve compiled this collection of useful tips on how to get a sales job in the post-pandemic market.
Preparing for Your Job Search
Before you dive into job listings, applications, and interviews, you’re going to need to make yourself as presentable as possible to any potential employers that may be on the lookout for someone just like you. To do that, check out the following tips:
Clean Up and Lock Down Social Accounts
A great LinkedIn profile can earn you a job; a poorly managed Instagram or Facebook can lose you one. Before you start applying anywhere, you should make sure that you have a LinkedIn profile that serves as a second resume and that any content on your other socials that may reflect poorly on you is removed.
Get Your References Prepared
Your potential employer is likely going to request some references from you, and they may reach out to every name you give them, so you’re going to want to make sure you have a strong set of references who are ready and willing to give you as ringing an endorsement as they possibly can when that call comes in.
Hiring Trends 2022
Your preparation should also include looking into current hiring trends so that you have a grasp of what employers are looking for in a potential hire. You can do this by simply searching the web for “hiring trends 2022” and looking at what all of the top hiring sites have to say.
How to Market Yourself for a Job
Next comes the part where you start throwing your lure into the waters and seeing if you can get any bites. The best way to garner as many bites as possible is marketing yourself as a top-performing sales rep by following these tips:
If you’re not using LinkedIn to get a job in today’s market, you’re doing yourself a disservice. A 2016 Jobvite report found that employers use LinkedIn more than any other social media to find qualified candidates.
That number has undoubtedly only grown in the last five years. Make sure to create a well-written profile that includes professional photos and has as many endorsements and recommendations from former co-workers, employers, or clients as possible.
Be Sure to Network
Networking is important in pretty much all facets of life, and things are no different in the world of sales. Knowing the right people can get your foot in the door when a desirable job vacancy pops up, or it can earn you the glowing recommendation you need to score a key interview.
It can also help you glean some crucial knowledge about what employers are looking for in their sales reps.
Take Advantage of Professional Development Opportunities
Professional development programs will sharpen your technology, sales and soft skills. They’ll also bolster your resume and potentially give you the competitive edge when it comes time for your potential employer to choose between you and another candidate.
Making Your Application Materials Stand Out
You’d be surprised how much a few tweaks to your resume and cover letter can do for your job hunt. This is especially true if you haven’t applied to jobs in a long time because if that’s the case, then chances are both your resume and cover letter are outdated and need to be refreshed. Below are some tips for doing just that:
Updating Your Resume
You want your resume to reflect everything you’ve done that might qualify you as a great sales rep, and you want to make sure that it’s as up-to-date as possible. If you have experience in sales, then you’re going to want to include the following information:
- Where you’ve had sales experience
- Products you’ve sold
- Details about your customer base
- Who you’ve worked with
- Deal sizes and quota achievements
Include this information prominently, along with all of the other typical resume details: work history, training, education, achievements, etc.
Updating Your Cover Letter
Your cover letter is your potential employer’s very first taste of the kind of sales rep you are. You want to make sure you can give your potential employer a succinct description of the kind of person and employee you will be, the experience you have, and what you can bring to the position.
Also, make sure to put some hard numbers on past sales achievements if you have any experience in the field, and always tailor your cover letter to the specific job you are applying for.
How to Prepare for a Sales Interview
If you’ve followed all of the previous steps successfully, then it should only be a matter of time before you get called in for an interview. You’re not in the clear yet, though: the interview is perhaps the most important part of the entire hiring process. To make sure you nail yours, take a look at the following tips:
Research the Company
Whether your potential employer gets into the gritty details of their organization with you during the interview is irrelevant. You want to be able to tell them all about the company you’re looking to be employed by without ever being prompted to do so, so do your research!
Think of It as Making a Sale
You are making a sale, really. You’re attempting to sell your potential employer on the value you can bring to their company. Show them that value by giving them the best sales pitch they’ve ever heard.
Know Your Skills
It’s one thing to have a strong skill set, and another thing entirely to be able to describe that skill set in detail to someone else. Make sure you’re able to articulate both your soft and hard skills as they pertain to a sales job.
Be Prepared to Make a Pitch
It’s not uncommon for the interviewer to request a demonstration of your ability to make a sales pitch. They may just point out any old object in the room and ask you to pitch it to them. Be ready for that because it could be the make-or-break moment in the interview.
Once your interview is complete, don’t forget to follow up. The classiest way to do this is with a brief note thanking the employer for their consideration and the chance to interview. With any luck, they’ll respond with an offer to hire!
Your Dream Job Awaits
Standing out from the crowd can feel like a big mountain to climb. However, having a growth mindset and continually learning and growing professionally can differentiate you from others. Putting in the extra time and effort to make yourself shine will help you get noticed by employers and improve your chances of getting your dream job.