I devote hours of Marketing diploma student class time to careers- types of careers, skill sets for various careers, typical career paths, etc, as there are many misconceptions/myths for ‘Marketing’ grads -eg Advertising & Brand Management roles have long held ‘the glam factor’. Yet other roles do have their own ‘glam’ and appeal, even if, for example, roles in Analytics, Planning & B2B Sales are too-often improperly/inaccurately portrayed in Pop Culture & the pre-Secondary education system.
My advice to grads: consider your own skills preferred work style & aspirations-not what Uncle Joe/Cousin Sue think you’d excel at or should do for a living.
B2B Sales, a career typically under-respected in the Canadian education system, requires planning, analysis & strategic skills. Such roles do often involve long hours or after-hours work; but what promising career doesn’t? At least, in many B2B Sales roles, you eat what you kill– ie your comp is often clearly linked to the new accounts you secure, the extent to which you help grow sales & satisfaction to/for your customer, etc, etc, etc. You perform: –> you earn.
Students ask if introverts can succeed in Sales roles? Yes!
Is B2B Sales pretty much just firm handshakes & being quick on your feet? PLEEEEEEEASE! Stop watching bad TV shows! B2B Sales requires Preparation, Research, Listening, Relationship Management- when you graduate & meet various B2B Sales professionals, you’ll undoubtedly be impressed by their deportment, insight, readiness, attention to service. In decades in Marketing, I’ve been impressed by various suppliers & prospective suppliers. Now, in Education, I find B2B account reps & ‘Biz Development’ staff at publishers & other partners, to also be impressively professional.
And, if you think B2B ‘Sales’ peoples responsibilities, empowerment & compensation are remotely similar to that of Retail Sales people, think again! Those are 2 ENTIRELY different worlds– the pay structure, amount of empowerment/ autonomy, resources & time horizons couldn’t be more different- in fact, many B2B ‘Sales’ roles aren’t actually not called ‘Sales’ roles at all; their titles are often rephrased as ……..’Marketing Reps’!!!
– so there! Does that have a bit more ‘glam’ to it, Marketing program grads?