Let’s be honest with ourselves, most people go into sales because they want to make a lot of money. Salespeople are typically some of the highest paid people in an organization, and there’s no shame in admitting that you want to make the big bucks. Sure, there are some people who love the rush, enjoy helping people, or have naturally found themselves in a sales role because of their abilities or career trajectory. But, the majority of people go into sales because they know that they’re going to be well compensated for their efforts.
But not all sales jobs are created equal. There are plenty of sales jobs where people are underpaid, or have a ceiling for how much money they’ll make. On the flip side, there are high paying jobs where somebody can make six or even seven figures. These are, of course, the most sought after sales jobs, and it’s not easy to get one. But if you want to know how to increase your chances of attaining a high paying sales job, here are some tips that might help:
Step 1. Identify the field
Beginning with the end in mind is a great piece of advice for sales, but it’s also good advice for picking the right position. In order to figure out which high paying sales job you want to shoot for, you’ll need to find it first. Do research on industries that are doing well or emerging, and use (or grow) your network to identify good opportunities. Many of the best paying sales jobs are well-kept secrets that you can only find out about if you talk to other people. Spend time upfront learning more about what’s out there and it may pay dividends down the line.
Step 2. Tailor your skillset
Once you’ve identified the ideal job, you’ll need to get to work tailoring your skillset for the requirements of that position. Whether it might involve a specific degree, work experience, or a certain background, if you’re serious about making a career out of it, then you shouldn’t let these things be a deterrent. Of course, keep in mind that some things can be negotiable, and if you’re industrious enough to figure out a way to get your foot in the door, there’s a chance you might be able to circumvent a few of the requirements.
Step 3. Be patient
If you want to get into a high paying sales job but your background isn’t the right fit, you can’t expect it to happen overnight. People in these positions oftentimes spent years building their experience at other companies or positions in order to advance into the higher paying roles, and you need to have the same outlook. If you’re only thinking short term – about what’s happening next week or next month – then you’re probably not going to achieve anything worthwhile. Remember that most things worth doing take time.
Step 4. Look for an “in”
There’s simply no denying that knowing somebody will give you a leg up over other people. But if you, like most people, don’t have connections in high places, you need to make them. If it sounds daunting, then you might not be cut out for high-level sales to begin with. The same industriousness and out of the box thinking that it takes to figure out an “in” at your dream job is the same skillset that it takes to be a big-game sales hunter. Like famous comedian Milton Berle said, “if opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door.”
Step 5. Do your homework
At higher levels, you can’t expect to simply wing it. Do your homework on the field or the job so that you know it inside and out. This applies even before you land an interview, but especially if you can get in front of somebody. Not only should you understand the industry and the competitive landscape, but you should also know who the key players are, and have an idea of the trends in the marketplace that could affect the future. If you take the time to learn and understand all of these things, you’ll easily stand out from everybody else angling for the same role.
Step 6. Articulate the value you bring to the position
Knowing everything about the company and industry isn’t enough. You need to understand and be able to coherently explain why you are going to be an asset. Remember, it’s not necessarily about your background or credentials as it is about what you’re going to do to meet and exceed your sales quota and help the company achieve its goals. An even better approach is to put a presentation together outlining what you expect to achieve and how you plan on doing it during your first few months. Sure, the company might have other ideas, but it’ll show that you took the time to prepare and are somebody that will go above and beyond what’s required.
Step 7. Follow-up
After the interview (or when trying to land one), make sure to consistently follow-up with key decision makers. You should also always send thank you notes when necessary, as failing to do so is considered a deal-breaker among many hiring managers. In your follow-ups, make sure to provide any answers that you might not have included during the interview, as well as restate the highlights of why you’re the perfect candidate. Be so good that they can’t ignore you.
Step 8. Keep trying
If you’re rejected and you give up after the first try, then you might not have what it takes to cut it in a high-paying sales job to begin with. You need to be resilient in sales, and resilient when applying for your dream sales job. If you don’t get the role, try to understand why not. Don’t be afraid to ask why and what you can do differently next time. And remember, there are a significant number of high paying sales jobs, so just because you didn’t get one doesn’t mean there aren’t other amazing opportunities out there for you. You just have to keep looking and don’t give up.
Also, if you want to make more money at the sales job you already have, try adopting a proactive relationship management platform, like Spiro!