As a sales coach, I get asked this question all the time: “Is sales really the right career for me?” And you know what? Sometimes the answer to that question is no. Not everyone is built to enjoy it and thrive in sales.
If you’re new to the sales world and thinking it might not be a good fit for you, or if you’re not seeing the kind of results you want to see from your sales career, maybe it’s just not what you’re destined to do. There are a few specific questions you can ask yourself—and answer honestly—that will reveal the truth.
It’s hard to consider that the path you’ve chosen in life might not be right for you. But being successful in sales takes a very specific kind of person with a unique skill set. Therefore, if you’re wondering if you really have what it takes to be a top producing salesperson, ask yourself the following questions.
Sales Quiz – Should I Be in Sales?
(Note: If you’re new to the world of sales, replace the “do you” in these questions with “could you”. And be honest with yourself about what you’re really capable of.)
- Do you have the ability to maintain a positive attitude—no matter what?
- Do you believe in your ability to be a top performer?
- Do you get fired up talking about your products and services?
- Do you set and achieve your goals?
- Do you plan your schedule and activities every week?
- Do you feel uncomfortable on easy street when you know you could give more of yourself?
- Do you give every effort to learn the entire sales process—from leaving effective voicemail messages to knowing multiple closing techniques?
- Do you accept rejection with excitement knowing it’s leading to your next yes?
- Do you look at new products or markets as opening a whole new world to you?
- Do you understand that your success has a direct connection to your hard work?
- Do you take responsibility for your attitude and your results?
If you answered “yes” to all of the questions above, then congrats! Selling is in your DNA!
If you answered “no” to 1, 2, or 3 of the above questions, then you probably have some work to do. Read some books, take some sales courses, or look into getting a sales coach to refine your sales skills and attitude.
However, if you answered “no” to more than three of the above questions, or if you can admit that you weren’t completely honest with the “yes” answers you gave, it’s time to consider if a life in the business of sales is right for you.
It’s difficult to look hard truths like this in the face, I know. It’s as if sometimes we just need a Randy Jackson in our life—someone who will say, “Listen dawg, sales just isn’t your thing!”
If you’re discovering through this blog post that you’re in the wrong career or industry, please don’t think that’s a bad thing! Look at it as a positive: The sooner you eliminate the things you aren’t loving and thriving at, the sooner you can find that one thing you’re truly passionate about and the places you naturally excel.
You should never settle for anything less than a fulfilling career. If you weren’t born to be in sales, then you’re never going to be a sales superstar, and in the end, you’ll never be truly happy in your work. Life’s too short for all that!
I find that many people who discover sales isn’t their cup of tea end up much happier in other Customer Service or Account Management roles. Or maybe you love sales, but hitting the pavement every day and cold calling isn’t your strong suit. An inside sales position may suit you better. Perhaps your place is supporting and complementing that external salesperson by doing more of the behind-the-scenes work. Every yin needs its yang, after all.
Please feel free to contact me if you’re not sure what industry or role you might be best suited to. I know scores of wonderful, successful people across so many industries, and I’d love to talk about connecting you with the right person so that you can find the career path you’re really meant to be on.
Discovering that a life in sales isn’t your destiny doesn’t have to be the end of the world. Don’t let it derail you or demoralize you. You should view it as a chance to get out there and find the life you’re meant to be living. Then jump in feet-first!
Until next time—go sell some stuff (or don’t, if it’s not your thing)!