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Three Steps To Transition Out of a Sales Job

Working in sales can be an exciting job opportunity. It can build you up like no other profession can. From learning how to be a great communicator to organizing comprehensive business strategy, you can learn almost anything in this profession.

But not everyone is capable of dealing with the demand of the sales industry. Some people get stressed out by the high-pressure quotas and some just don’t have the personality to thrive in sales.

Whatever the case, a lot of people give it a shot and find it’s not for them. This realization can make a person feel stuck or frustrated. It’s hard to get out sales and into something else, but it’s also reasonable to take a few missteps while looking for your true calling.

For that, people need to know how to transition out of a sales job into a new career. These three tips can show you how.

Find what you want to do

Some people end up with a sales job because that’s the only position available for them. Being a sales agent often requires no experience, so as long as you undergo a company’s necessary training, you are usually good to go.

Some people want to get out as quickly as they got in and there’s nothing wrong with that. You just have to find out what it is you’d rather be doing.

This starts with what you’re passionate about, but it doesn’t have to end there. You can also look into jobs or industries that you think you might be interested in.

You should make a list of 10 to 20 of these jobs and narrow your search based around similar opportunities.

Understand what a non-sales job entails

Now that you narrowed your search, you can get to know these opportunities more specifically.

You have to realize that every job has pros and cons and all jobs are different. An office worker might have a fixed set of tasks provided by the employer, while sales professionals create their own list of things to accomplish in order to seal the deal with their prospects.

You should also isolate what it is you didn’t like about sales and keep those things on your ‘cons’ list. If you don’t want to deal with quotas, find a job that’s more project-based. If you don’t want to work on commission or performance incentives, find a job with a nice base salary.

Cruising job sites and postings should give you a better idea of what to expect at each job. Even if you’re not applying directly online, employers usually detail duties and job requirements in these posts. You may also decide to set up informational interviews with companies in your field(s) of interest, to get an even better understanding of what the job entails.

Learn how to use what you’ve learned in your new career

You have to realize that sales experience gives you a wide range of skills that are transferable to other careers.

You learned how carry yourself in a competent and professional manner and how to serve customers. One of the most common lessons learned by anyone who tried life as a sales professional is being responsive and responsible.

Another critical lesson is being organized and self-guided. An effective sales professional is able to set a proper schedule in order to deliver what is expected of them.

It’s important to take inventory of your current job to look for skills like these that can transfer to a new career.

Don’t be intimidated and stay motivated

This is probably the most important step. Finding a job is a difficult experience for anyone, let alone for someone trying to move into a new industry. At times it can be draining and you may want to give up on searching altogether, but staying motivated and positive will guide you through.

In order to keep yourself motivated, setting small goals is best. Don’t think about getting a new job as one big undertaking, but a sum of small undertakings.

You could find three new job opportunities per day. Spend an hour at a time applying for positions. Create multiple versions of your resume for applying to different industries and positions. Schedule time to contact employers for informational interviews. Doing things this way and prioritizing will help make the process seem less daunting.

Ultimately, staying motivated and alert is half the battle of navigating the job market. People who stay on top of things tend to get hired, or at worst, have more opportunities to meet with employers.

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About the Author Susan Ranford

Susan Ranford is an expert on job market trends, hiring, and business management. She is the Community Outreach Coordinator for New York Jobs. In her blogging and writing, she seeks to shed light on issues related to employment, business, and finance to help others understand different industries and find the right job fit for them.