Why Sales Is A Good Training Ground For Entrepreneurs

Sales is a good training ground for entrepreneurs because it offers fantastic opportunities, and possibilities. It is especially well suited for an entrepreneurial person, and those who dream of one day owning their own business. Furthermore the control you have over your income means you get paid for the results you produce instead of what someone thinks you’re worth.

Entrepreneurship is perhaps the most challenging aspect of business especially if you don’t have the necessary skill set developed. Being an entrepreneur means you are depending solely on yourself, and you need the drive, passion, and determination to see it through to success. This is why it’s crucial that entrepreneurs are both self-confident and assertive in order to overcome the difficulties any start up encounters. Sales gives you these things through the school of hard knocks.

Why Sales Teaches You To Be A Good Entrepreneur

Salespeople can in many ways be thought of as miniature entrepreneurs. A salesperson is someone who is like an agent. They make a profit from selling a company’s goods to a prospective customer. They work within a set environment but really the difference between being a salesperson, and starting your own business is quite small.

If you start a retail store you are really a sole sales person with goods to sell. Aside from managing the business many entrepreneurs and salespeople work within the same roles. Being a good salesperson requires that you know how to deal with customers, understand people, and are a highly motivated individual. The same is true in almost every case with entrepreneurs.

When you accept a job as a salesperson you are really going into business for yourself. Your income is solely determined by the results you produce. In effect you are really an agent between customers and the company you work for to sell their goods. In return you take a cut of the sale. This is the same thing most business owners do.

In fact you could start your own business as a salesperson who sells other people s products and services. Indeed many companies are built solely on the premise of taking another companies products and then selling it to the end customer.

As an entrepreneur you are going to have to play the role of a salesperson in many different ways. Taking a career in sales teaches you all the skills you are going to need to use in your own business. It gives you the skill set and teaches you the traits that every entrepreneur needs to succeed like:

  •  Being a self-starter
  •  Determination
  •  Persistence
  •  Drive
  •  Competitiveness
  •  Hard work
  •  Persuasiveness
  •  Getting along with others
  •  Managing and working in teams
  •  Customer service
  •  The art of the deal
  •  And much more!

In fact it’s almost universal that good salespeople make good entrepreneurs because the traits required for each are almost the same. While entrepreneurs may need other skills that salespeople do not, it doesn’t change the fact that as an entrepreneur you will often be working as a salesperson for your own enterprise.

Sales also teaches you all the nuances of the business you wish to enter. Indeed one of the best things you can do is to become a salesperson in the industry you’d like to make a business in. Then you can discover all the key elements to making that business work and the necessary skills to start your own.

Most entrepreneurs have sales problems over management problems. Managers can be hired, and bought if you are not good at managing yourself. However you cannot always “buy” your way into more sales. You need that specific skill set to win people over to your way of thinking. As an entrepreneur there is no skill you will use more often than getting people to agree with you. Salespeople by nature learn to master the art of getting “yes” out of others.

Why It Takes A Special Kind Of Person To Succeed As An Entrepreneur

As an entrepreneur you often will need to put in long hours and hard weeks while staying focused and enthusiastic on your work. Due to these requirements, it’s certainly not the right role for everyone. Just a select few have the tenacity, guts, and drive to start their own business because it’s success or failure rests solely on your shoulders.

However doing sales can be a great starting point to train would be entrepreneurs in the necessary skills to succeed. Sales gives you the independence and training in self direction that every entrepreneur will need to master in order to achieve their goals. It helps you to deal with a wide range of people, teaches you how to become a “rain marker” and shows you how to make deals with other people. All of these are vital skills every entrepreneur depends on.

What Makes Sales and Entrepreneurship So Fantastic For The Right People

As an entrepreneur you have the freedom to direct everything to the way you see fit. Enabling you to choose what your company will do, the strategies it will take, and the policies it will implement. If there is something you see that’s wrong or not effective, you have the freedom to change it immediately without looking to your superiors. After you become successful, you don’t need to share the fruits of your labor with other people.

There are more benefits you will experience as an entrepreneur and a sales person:

1. You will have the freedom to pick who you work with, and decide how many people you will work with

2. You will be able to set whatever schedule you like, choose a compelling, exciting vision for your company, and focus on achieving worthy goals and ideals in your company.

3. You can travel as often as you like and go around to many places in the world, then write it off if it’s for business purposes.

4. You can change and improve aspects of your business when things aren’t working the way they should and immediately get back on track

The Hard Part Of Entrepreneurship

It is great to run your own company, however you should take this caveat emptor. You will often need to search for new customers and will be solely responsible for ensuring money is coming in.

You will often need to put in longer hours than salaried employees, and often work at times other people are taking a break in order to reach your aspirations. You will need to be more careful with extracurricular activities. Your friends and family may need time to adjust to your new schedule.

You may also have difficulty as the sole boss because you don’t have the motivation and the confidence necessary to effectively run your own business.

What It All Comes Down To

You have different advantages and disadvantages to sales, and entrepreneurship. Your success is ultimately going to come down to you and how you deal with the task of creating a new company. Being your own boss, a salesperson or an entrepreneur is not always easy but it comes with greater rewards for your efforts. You can enjoy fantastic success and freedom provided you are willing to put in the necessary hard work and persistence needed.

About the Author: My name is Kevin Watts and I am the creator of graduatingfromdebt.com. I was like millions of recent college graduates in heavy debt with very little hope. With the right attitude and discipline I took control of my financial picture and now I can say proudly that I am debt free.

 

Main page photo: Summer In Buffalo – Jay
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16 Responses to Why Sales Is A Good Training Ground For Entrepreneurs

  1. Nice post! I recommend to pretend they are an entrepreneur in their career, whether or not they actually are. You list of skills is exactly why!

  2. Great correlation Kevin. As one who has been in both fields I could not agree more. What I find odd is that I did not enjoy, or do well in sales, but I love and do well at running my own business.

  3. Great post you have here Kevin! I agree with your points but I would say that whether you are a entrepreneur or not having sales experience is a great skill to have and practice. In all aspects of life you will be selling something whether it be a product, idea, yourself or your company. You need to be able to figure out and have great communication skills and find peoples needs. Even to some people say I will just hire someone I think you should know how difficult or easy something is and experience it first hand.

  4. Martin says:

    I bet this helps a lot. I can think of dealing with denial which is one of the biggest fears sales people have to deal with and it discourages many from even trying. People take it personally. If you are in sales and have a lot of help and support you can learn going over it and become successful on your own.

  5. One of the first things I learned in sales is not take to take things personally. People are always going to reject and most of the time you had nothing to do it. Being in confident and developing your skills and not worrying about the results take a lifetime to master.

  6. Sales training is great! Even if you’re not in sales specifically, as an entrepreneur there is something you are trying to sell.

  7. You are probably right about this at least for particular types of entrepreneurial business. I once read that natual salesmen (and women) are on;y about 3% of the populaton. If so, then I guess much the same is true of entrepreneurs. Although there are businesses where the difficult thing is not selling but buying at the right time. So maybe 6%???

  8. Peter says:

    I can’t agree with you more on this. My mentor in college advised me to find a service job like sales where you deal with customers up front. That way you get upfront feedback on your work and you learn projects from inception to execution.

  9. Maybe to add on to the discussion, I think experience as a salesperson also gives you a thick skin! Dealing with all those rejections is not easy. You learn early on not to take it personally, thats its part of business life and this one lesson comes in handy when you switch to being an entrepreuer. Lots of things will go wrong as they usually do, but you learn to take in your stride!

  10. In any entrepreneurship or business venture, we are selling something. Whether services or tangible goods still we are selling. Therefore, sales is a great training ground in putting up our own business because we experience the first row of the battle ground. If we are the boss of our company and have an experience in sales thus we have a good grasp of what is happening from top to bottom.

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