Thursday, 18 August 2022
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Interview Tips For Career Changers

Sales is a very common path for career changers to take.  A sales career is almost always a person’s second career …. a career they didn’t necessarily plan for but a career that gave them the job security and financial rewards lacking in their previous professions. 

The key for a career changer to move into sales is to convey that the transferable skills in your current profession match the needs of a sales role. 

You will need to conduct some research into sales and look at the skills required to do sales work.  What skills do you have that match those required of a sales role?  Think of how your skills might match some of the following key sales skills:

  • Communication skills
  • Listening skills
  • Presentation skills
  • Planning skills
  • Ability to handle rejections
  • Influencing skills
  • A focus on achieving results

You also need to evaluate your strengths.  What are your skills and competencies?  Look at previous work environments that you have enjoyed, the types of jobs you have found interesting, and the areas in which you have excelled during previous roles. 

Next, think about how you will convey your strengths and transferable skills in an interview situation:

  • What can you discuss with a potential employer interviewing you for your new sales career?
  • What are your relevant transferable skills?
  • How do your strengths fit in with the sales profession?

As an example, let’s consider how a Project Engineer might present his skills to fit into a sales position.  As a Project Engineer, one would interact with clients and consultants, make presentations, attain corporate goals, and present valuable information to clients and managers.  This means that the Project Engineer establishes rapport with clients and business partners, which is key for a sales job.  The Project Engineer must also meet and exceed corporate quotas and make presentations, which are also skills necessary for a sales career.

It is also useful to think of why you are making a career change into sales.  What is it about sales that you are interested in?  Why make the move? Your motivations and reasons for making a change in careers will be asked of you during an interview, so you must be able to articulate your motives clearly.  Be prepared with answers that rationally and logically explain why you wish to leave your current profession and move into sales.

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