Unlucky Situations and What to do about them for Sales Professionals
There are three types of salespeople looking for a new sales job:
1. Employed, closing deals, and only looking for the better deal
2. Employed, missing quota, and looking for a new job fast
3. Unemployed, desperately looking for a new sales job yesterday
But wait, there is fourth type that comes around every now and then.
4. Employed with Unlucky & Unfortunate Circumstances Looming
Sales is a difficult profession. We are constantly training our minds to focus on the things we can control. Yet many times we are faced with situations that are out of our control, yet can affect us negatively. How do we react and move forward in times of 'Unlucky & Unfortunate Circumstances?'
When You Know a Turn of Events is Ahead Don't Wait Too Long to Act
If you sense layoffs are coming, an acquisition is in the works, funding won’t materialize, or your boss is leaving, it's time to update your LinkedIn profile and notify your network. Don't wait until you get called into a meeting where they draw the blinds and fire you.
You can be certain this is about to happen if you have an executive give a speech and he or she says, “Don’t worry, we’re not laying anyone off.” The irony is usually a month or less after the statement is made, layoffs will happen. Take all red flags as a sign to be prepared to move on.
Stay proactive, and don't wait too long to leave. Unemployed salespeople are not perceived as prudent risk hires by many employers. So do what you can to stay out of this category.
If this unfortunate and negative event (acquisition, CEO leaves, funds dry up, etc.) impacts everyone on your sale team, the longer you wait to leave, the worse off you’ll likely be. Because you’ll be competing with your current colleagues over the available jobs of the day.
As a recruiter, I can tell you when an 'event' takes place in a particular company, it is not uncommon for us to be working with other people on the sales team. Those are the people you are in competition with because they have the same current experience you do.
If you can get ahead of the mass exodus, you will face better employment options with less competition.
Loyalty is a Virtuous Trait, but Not at Your Personal Expense
Today's employers want to see salespeople who have demonstrated tenure at an organization. One and two-year stints are not as desirable as three and five-year stints. If you are someone who feels 'very loyal' to your employer, this is indeed, a virtue.
But it does have a drawback if you stay when you should be looking for a new opportunity e.g. your company is getting acquired, your paycheck bounces, solutions can't be implemented, etc.
If there are negative impactful changes on the horizon, there is no time like the present to notify your network. Looking for a new sales job used to take a month, now it can take up to five months depending on the type of role you're looking for.
Let's Get Moving
If you find yourself in Unlucky & Unfortunate Circumstances, today is the day to take action.
1. Get your LinkedIn profile updated.
2. Invest some time in your job search now, not next week.
3. Prepare to take the Unlucky & Unfortunate event in stride. Remember you were looking for a job when you found the one you have.
4. Remain positive about your future and refuse to speak negatively about your current employment circumstances. If you're harboring resentment, which is very common when an unfortunate event happens, it's time to let it go.
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