Sales Strategies

Selling 101: How to Crush Your First Year In Sales

Are you about to start a new career in sales? How exciting!

Or maybe you have already started a new sales career but you are off to a slow start. Don’t give up.

If I had a dollar for every mistake I made by first 5 years in sales, I would be swimming in money and would have retired when I was 24. 🙂

But mastering sales can be daunting. There are no overnight success stories and sometimes you learn more by hearing ‘No’ more often than hearing ‘Yes’.

I have coached thousands of men and women over the past 25 years. Here is the common denominator of the rookie salespeople who get off to a fast start:

How to Crush Your First Year In Sales

Your schedule is your lifeline

The salespeople who don’t succeed are the ones who are off-schedule and not working a tight schedule.

You must call on new clients every single day. You must keep distractions at bay. If you work part time hours at your new sales job, you will earn part time money. Not surprising, you get back what you put in that first year.

You are coachable

This is huge. Huuuuuge. When people ask me how and why I have been successful at everything I have set out to accomplish in life, my simple answer has always been “because I am extremely coachable. All I have to do is pay attention to what the successful people around me are doing, and then do that myself”. It works every time.

Follow at least 3 successful people in your field. Take copious notes. Learn 1 or 2 things (not 40) from each person you follow which you can put to practice immediately.

When you attend your company meetings, sit next to a top producer and rack their brain. Ask them tons of questions. Ask them to role play with you. Ask for their permission for you to record what they say to clients in various situations.

If you are the smartest or most successful person in the room, you are in the wrong room

You don’t rely on friends and family

You might be thinking Huh, but the company I work for told me to start selling to friends and family. I’m confused.

A few things. You only have a certain number of friends and family members. Consequently, If you rely on them, you will make a whopping 5 sales and then exhaust your pipeline. That’s when 99% of salespeople quit.

The only way to have a sustainable, long-term, high income-producing sales career is to call on total strangers from the very beginning. And then work referrals through those strangers. This may require you to go knock on doors.

You don’t rely on technology

Sales are made in person. Period.

Some awesome moms I know invited me to a Pampered Chef party via a Facebook invitation. 292 ladies were invited. Only 16 replied they would come – which is only 18 % of the ladies they reached out to confirmed coming. And they received 7 dreadful ‘Maybe’ replies (the people who don’t have the guts to click ‘No’).

If half of the ladies at this party buy something, that would result in only 8 sales.

success first year in sales

If the hosts of the party had taken a different approach and called and sat down with each guest one-by-one, they probably would have set appointments with at least half of them (146). And if only half of those bought something, that would have resulted in 74 sales!

74 sales vs 8 sales is a difference of nine times the number of sales! Holy smokes!

And the cherry on top…if these ladies get good at working referrals, they could turn those 74 new customers into an empire by working referrals from those 74 customers. As a result, they would never run out of people to see.

Now do you see the difference between play money and a long-term sustainable sales career?

In summary, keep these 4 keys in mind when starting you new sales career:

  • Stay on a super tight schedule
  • Be extremely coachable
  • Call on strangers
  • Go see people face-to-face

success first year in sales






What helped you when you were new to sales? What do you struggle with them most in sales?

Photo by Pexels




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