tech sales job description for sales development and account executives

What Tech Sales Job Descriptions Are REALLY Telling You

In this article, you’ll learn what tech sales job descriptions are really telling you, along with a breakdown of the different types of sales positions that exist in tech.

Before we dive into how companies advertise sales positions (and what that means for you, the job seeker), it’s good to have a basic understanding of the possible types of tech sales jobs that exist.

In a certain sense it’s quite simple. Excluding managerial roles there are two types of tech sales jobs, those related to sales development (it’s possible to get sales development jobs with minimal experience) and those related to actual sales, closing deals, etc (typically known as an Account Executive).

But within these two categories there is a great amount of variety.

Different companies have different needs, and therefore being an SDR/AE at one company is likely quite different than having the same job title at another company.

Let’s first consider SDR’s and the types of roles that there are.

Types Of SDR Jobs

1. Outbound SDR:

This is a labor intensive role, often best suited for people fresh out of college beginning a career in tech sales. It involves a lot of cold calling (80 – 100/day), mass emailing, leaving voicemails — it’s the epitome of grunt work. Companies that lack a great deal of marketing leads will often compensate by using teams of outbound SDR’s to generate opportunities manually.

2. Inbound SDR:

This is a much ‘chiller’ job compared to an outbound role, available at companies with a significant amount of interest in their product. The Inbound SDR will qualify various inquiries and decide which ones are worth passing along to the sales team. These are great jobs to look for because any company with enough interest in their product to need Inbound SDR’s likely has substantial product market fit.

3. Enterprise/Strategic SDR:

This is a role where an SDR works closely within a team or directly with an Account Executive to open up important business opportunities. It will still involve cold calling, but will require more strategy than a normal Outbound role. Often Enterprise SDRs will have to map out the various people in an account and create personalized emails based on their LinkedIn profiles.

Of course, most SDR roles will not be one of these three types exclusively, and will be more of a hybrid of several. Let’s now look at some SDR job descriptions and see what one can gather from the description.

SDR Job Descriptions: Decoded

Example 1: Diffbot

Account Development Representative (ADR)

The Account Development Representative (ADR) at Diffbot is the first line of customer identification and qualification for the Data Solutions team. This role helps qualify inbound and prospect outbound leads for the company’s sales process — ADRs are innately curious about how AI will revolutionize the nature of information processing across all industries in the future. They are comfortable speaking the language of all of the various stakeholders in a large organization: ranging from the developer up to the CEO, to learn about how they use data and educate them about how our technology can make their workflows more efficient.

Core Responsibilities:

– Lead prospecting targeted outbound accounts for new opportunities; respond to and qualify inbound leads for potential customers

– Meet and exceed set monthly opportunity generation goals

– Communicate professionally and build relationships with C-level and VP level contacts at companies across various industries

What Does This Actually Mean?

From this description, we know that the ‘Account Development Representative’ role at Diffbot is really a hybrid of an Inbound SDR and Enterprise SDR. We know that there is an Inbound competent to the job because it says so plainly. We know that there is an Enterprise SDR component to the role because of the bit about being ‘comfortable speaking the language of all the various stakeholders in a large organization.

What this translates to, roughly, is that the ADR will have to interface with several people within an organization. This could be to book a meeting for an account executive, but it could also be do some detective work and find out who the decision maker/makers are. The ‘Account’ Development Representative has to think about entire accounts strategically, rather than just throwing out blind repetitive cold calls.

Example 2: Apptimize

Sales development is the life blood of Apptimize. The CEO loves sales development and in the early days manually sent 500 emails per day. The sense of accomplishment when you go through the prospect responses, the rapid iteration through different combinations of target profiles and pitches- maybe we’re weird but we find it satisfying and fun. Business development is how we get our best customers.

This role is ideal for someone who wants to live at the the front line of our go to market strategy and figure out what works with what audience and what’s going to come up during the sales process.

What Does This Actually Mean?

While it doesn’t say so specifically, from the second sentence it’s quite clear that this is a job description for an Outbound Sales development role. Here’s how you can tell. First and foremost, Apptimize gloats about and admires the manual outbound sales process that the CEO went through in its early days. Secondly, the description specifies that this role is for someone who wants to be on the ‘front line’.

Note: If you read this article and retain anything, remember that in sales being on the ‘front line’ is code for an extensive amount of cold calling, cold emailing — manual sales work. From this job description, it seems likely that Apptimize’s SDR role is almost purely outbound.

Example 3: Airtable

Core Responsibilities:

  • Strategize around sales inquiries with other members of the sales team.

  • Educate existing free Airtable users about the value of our premium product.

  • Coordinate users’ product exploration journeys, each tailored to the specific organization at hand, to convert budding interest into commercial action.

  • Rapidly learn how to model a wide range of use cases across different industries and the key dynamics that affect those use cases.

  • Actively deploy these modeling capabilities in highly targeted customer situations.

  • Conduct high-leverage, in-depth research to find new sales leads and enable success with the newly identified leads.

  • As an early team member, be energized by the opportunity to help build a process from the ground up.

  • Use data to problem-solve around the sales process and generate force-multiplying changes.

What Does This Actually Mean?

This role is an Inbound SDR role. Their Sales Development Associates are expected to work only with current customers using the Airtable product and warm leads who have inquired about the product. There is some strategic work in attempting to find new business opportunities, but because there’s no reference to working with VP’s or CEO’s the work is likely much less about strategizing careful outreach and more about generating interest with inbound leads to pass along to the sales team. You’ll need an intermediate level of sales skills and experience to perform well in this type of role.

Types of Account Executive (AE) Jobs

As An Account Executive selling SaaS, there are three basic categories that your job can fall under. Here’s what we’ve come up with:

1. Transactional Selling:

In this role, an Account Executive will meet with many clients for a short amount of time (often only one phone call). There is not an incredible amount of strategy involved with this sort of sale, and successful AE’s focus on securing ‘one call closes’ through persuasion and hustling to get more leads.

2. Enterprise (Complex) Sales:

In this role, an Account Executive will have to go through several meetings with various stakeholders, and strategically align various interests of multiple parties to close large six to seven figure deals. It’s the classic definition of a complex sale.

3. Everything In-Between:

Mid-market sales, which leans towards medium sized businesses or small departments within large corporations, is the most common type of software selling. AE’s will usually have 2-5 meetings with 1-3 parties to close these deals, which require more patience than transactional selling but move faster than large enterprise deals.

4. Full Cycle Sales:

Full cycle AE’s lack the support of SDR’s to book meetings and generate opportunities. This means they must foster their client relationships from start to finish, and focus a decent amount of time not on selling but on generating opportunities. On the other hand pure Sales AE’s spend all day closing marketing and sales qualified leads without working on Business Development at all. You won’t become a Rainmaker in one day in this type of role. Big deals take time to close, but they’re worth it!

Account Executive (AE) Job Descriptions: Decoded

Example 4: Freshdesk

In this hunter, quota-carrying sales role, we’re seeking passionate and highly driven professionals with prior software / SaaS sales experience. The Account Executive will play a leading role in accelerating Freshdesk’s revenue growth in the U.S.

Specifically, the Account Executive will:

  • Generate pipeline for Freshdesk’s Mid-Market business
  • Prospect, manage the sales process, and close new accounts in rapid cycles, in primarily insides sales environment
  • Work closely with Freshdesk teams to quickly learn and communicate Freshdesk’s value proposition clearly and effectively
  • Sell multiple product-lines: Freshdesk (customer facing, multi-channel online helpdesk) and/or Freshservice (employee-facing, online IT service desk)
  • Be part of the core U.S. team to represent Freshdesk at industry events

What Does This Actually Mean?

Though the job title says ‘Enterprise Account Executive’ the job description is telling us something much different. First and foremost, ‘mid-market’ businesses are specified in the description rather than Fortune 500 companies. Also the sentence ‘close new accounts in rapid cycles’ indicates that the selling is likely transactional in nature. Finally there are several indications that the Account Executive is responsible for generating his or her own pipeline. Thus despite the job title the job description is indicating a full cycle, transactional Account Executive position.

how to find and contact a hiring manager about a job without seeming desperate

How To Find & Contact Hiring Managers About A Specific Sales Role (Without Seeming Desperate)

In this article, we’ll explain how to contact a hiring manager about a specific sales role—without coming across as desperate or overly aggressive.

After scrolling your way through a seemingly endless list of job postings, you finally found a sales role that seems absolutely perfect for you.

You polished up your resume, drafted a tailored cover letter, and submitted all of the necessary application materials.

Everything you need to do in order to be considered is done. But, you’re also eager to find a way to make a more personal connection—to go beyond the anonymity of the hiring process and put a face with your name.

One of the best ways to do this? By reaching out to the hiring manager with a friendly, professional, and completely un-pushy message.

Did that very thought just make your palms clammy? We know—putting yourself out there during your job search can be intimidating. Despite the fact that you work in sales, it’s still tough to sell yourself.

So, let’s dive in!

But First… A Word Of Caution

Reaching out to make a personal connection with somebody at the company can be a smart move.

However, it should never serve as a replacement for going through the application process that the employer has outlined.

For that reason, it’s wise not to reach out to the hiring manager about a specific role until after you’ve followed their instructions for officially tossing your hat into the ring.

Ignoring the steps that they’ve mapped out and instead opting to get in touch with a general, “I’m very interested in this position—please consider me!” message will only make you seem lazy and disrespectful.

So, make sure to heed the directions for applying (seriously, every last one) and then consider reaching out to the hiring manager as a secondary step to elevate your candidacy.

It’s great to be proactive about forging relationships—but, that doesn’t mean you can skip important steps and make up your own rules.

How to Find Hiring Managers

With that disclaimer out of the way, how do you find the hiring manager for a specific role? There are a couple of different tactics you can implement to zone in on the right person to contact.

1. Search the Company Website

Depending on the size of the company, you might be able to identify the appropriate point of contact directly on the website.

Click through to the “About Us” or “Team” pages and see if the company lists team members individually. If so? Look for someone that has a job title that relates to hiring, recruitment, talent management, or human resources.

2. Leverage LinkedIn

No luck on the website? As a salesperson, you already know that LinkedIn can be a powerful tool for forging relationships. So, it’s time to do some detective work on that platform.

From the LinkedIn homepage, begin by typing the name of the company you’re applying to in the search bar. If that employer has a LinkedIn profile, you should see it pop up within your search results.

leveraging linkedin search to contact hiring managers

Once you’re on that company’s LinkedIn page, you’ll see a link that says “See All Employees on LinkedIn.” Click that, and you’ll be brought to a page that displays the LinkedIn profiles of that specific company’s employees.

For this example, we’re looking at the LinkedIn profile of Google—which means there are thousands of employees. If the company you’re applying to isn’t nearly as large, you’ll have a much easier time zoning in on the appropriate contact.

But, if not? Use the filters to help you narrow your results. Click the “Filters” button and then type in a keyword (i.e. “talent” or “hiring”) to see only people who have that term in their job title.

job searching on linkedin

How to Contact Hiring Managers

You’ve found the person that you want to contact. Now, there’s another big question hanging over your head: What do you say? What sort of message is polished and professional—without seeming pushy?

After you’ve submitted your application, your best bet is to send a connection request (along with a personalized message) via LinkedIn.

Why is LinkedIn better than email? Well, for starters, it’s a social network—meaning it’s a far more casual and low-pressure way to reach out.

Secondly, because it’s a social platform, it makes for an incredibly easy way to stay in touch. A simple “like” or “comment” on that contact’s activity will keep you at the forefront of his or her mind—without having to send formal or purposeful emails in order to do so.

When you do send a personalized connection request, keep things short (you’ll have limited characters anyway) and somewhat general. Remember, this isn’t your opportunity to get into a lengthy discussion about the role. Instead, your goal is just to make an introduction and demonstrate your interest in the position.

This means that your messages should hit on three key things:

  • Your name
  • The position you just applied for
  • Your enthusiasm for finding out more about the role

With that in mind, your finished message could look something like this:

Hello Susan,

My name is Kat, and I just applied for the Sales Director position with Dunder Mifflin. I know my skills are a great match for what you’re searching for, and I’m really looking forward to finding out more about the opportunity.

In the meantime, I’d love to keep in touch on LinkedIn!



This message is friendly and concise. But, perhaps most importantly, it doesn’t make an ask. It doesn’t beg for an interview. It doesn’t ask about the hiring timeline. There’s no action that the recipient needs to take other than to accept your request.

That’s important. Much like when prospecting, the more straightforward (and less desperate) your message is, the higher the likelihood the hiring manager will accept your connection request and perhaps even respond.

When that happens? You have a foot in the door and a somewhat personal connection with that company—which can help you stand out from the competition and land an interview.

Over to You

Getting in touch with a hiring manager about a specific role can be a smart move to help you make an impact after you’ve submitted your application. After all, being able to put a face with your name (and your impressive experience) will make you all the more memorable for employers.

However, there’s no denying that step can still be nerve-wracking.

If you want to skip it altogether? Create a profile on Rainmakers. You can share your history, showcase your skills, and have interested employers directly contact you—rather than the other way around.

Does that sound way too good to be true? We promise it’s not. Apply now to get accepted and setup your own profile.

how to get a tech sales job in 2018

How to Get a Sales Job at a Hot Tech Company in a Ridiculously Short Amount of Time

Wanna land a tech sales job in a ridiculously short amount of time?

We’re about to teach you how to do it in 2018. Buckle up.

How To Get a Tech Sales Job… FAST

  1. Be Insanely Specific About Your Goals
  2. Build a List of Hot Tech Companies
  3. Copy Their Sales Job Descriptions To Find Keywords That Matter
  4. Update and Optimize Your LinkedIn Profile
  5. Make Sure Your LinkedIn Profile Matches With Your Resume
  6. Reach Out / Engage With Members Of Your Network
  7. Make Alliances With Recruiters
  8. Role Play Your Interview
  9. Book the Phone Interview
  10. Convert to an In-Person Interview
  11. Ace the Interview
  12. Negotiate Your Offer

Follow this step by step guide, and you will succeed. I promise.

Don’t just start doing stuff out of order. Read this guide at least twice, then execute one step at a time.

Even if you have no experience, it doesn’t matter. Follow these steps and you will land in glory.

#1: Be Insanely Specific About Your Goals

Most people define a job title they want (e.g. investment banker) then look to see who was hiring.

Now go and do the complete opposite. Define the kind of company you want first, then identify the position you can add the most value.

You will ABSOLUTELY get better results with a more targeted approach, trust me.

Think about location too. Many hot tech companies (especially in SaaS) are located in San Francisco.

Other emerging hubs are booming too though – like Austin, San Diego, Denver, Boston and New York.

What do you want?

#2: Build a List of Hot Tech Companies (Use a Virtual Assistant, Optional)

Build a list of all the possible companies that you think may be a good fit. You can do this yourself or hire someone on ODesk or eLance to do it for you.

I worked with a woman named Jane who lives in Costa Rica (she does great work).

This is the job description I sent her:

Hey Jane –

I could use your assistance to research available job positions at local tech companies.

Can you build a spreadsheet and find job positions available for “Sales Development Representative” and “Account Executive”.

– find local address closest to san francisco: on above websites or
– find employee count and capital raised here: first on or then
– find sales role: on their home website under jobs or careers

Can you send this back to me as soon as possible? Like later today?

Use that to get you started!

Business Insider also has a solid list of tech companies who are hiring right now.

#3: Copy Their Sales Job Descriptions To Find Keywords That Matter

Pick your top 3 target companies.

Then copy and paste the text of their job descriptions into this word cloud generator tool.


You’ll be able to find highly recurring keywords aka keywords that matter to your future employer.

Then use these keywords to update your LinkedIn profile and resume.

For more keywords to brush up on, check out this sales glossary of 260 terms.

#4: Update Your LinkedIn Profile

LinkedIn is all about story telling and highlighting your best self.

Present your story in a way that illustrates how all your past experiences have led up to the very moment you apply for a company.

Use the keywords from your word cloud above.

This will make your skills and experience more closely aligned with their job descriptions.

Plus, your profile is more likely to appear in recruiter searches.

Whatever you do, don’t be deceptive! It will come back to haunt you.

#5: Make Sure Your LinkedIn Profile Matches With Your Resume

Nowadays, most tech companies see your LinkedIn profile before your resume anyway.

Make sure you remain consistent across both channels.

Layout and design is important too. Many employers will disqualify you based on this alone (if you bomb it).

I’m serious. Choose a simple design for your resume. Somethings easy to read and understand. You can find plenty of quality resume templates at Creative Market.

#6: Reach Out / Engage With Members Of Your Network

Opportunities can be hidden in unlikely places. And you don’t want to leave any stones un-turned when you’re hunting for your dream job.

Steps one through five are all preparation steps before you can being outbound

But now, it’s time to send out a short 3-5 sentence email to your personal network.

Explain the type of company you want to join and your desired role. It’s hard for people to help if they don’t know exactly what you want.

Also, email your entire network on LinkedIn. You can easily export their contact info into a csv file (complete how-to instructions here). Then email each contact directly or in bulk.

#7: Make Alliances With Recruiters

I think recruiters are great. They are your second channel of warm introductions.

They help you prepare for interviews, they make introductions, and even schedule interviews for you.

A good recruiter should feel like a sidekick.

Here in San Francisco, you can refer to Rainmakers for new opportunities.

Just be honest and transparent when working with a recruiter.

Just tell them about the other opportunities you are pursuing.

That way you avoid any overlap or redundant outreach.

#8: Role Play Interview Over and Over

I’m so awkward during interview role plays. I don’t know why.  But, there is one thing I can do about it. And so can you.

Practice. Practice. Practice.

Get comfortable telling your own story.

Role play phone interviews and in-person interviews with yourself first. Then with recruiters.

Trust me. This exercise will pay off.

#9: Book the Phone Interview

By now, your network and your recruiters will begin feeding you opportunities.

It certainly helps to supplement this activity with some direct outreach of your own. Especially to any high priority companies where you don’t have a warm intro.

As the opportunities flow in, start to schedule those phone interviews. Typically, I will schedule no more than 3 interviews per day.

#10: Convert the Phone Interview to an In-Person

Remember to tell a story. Here’s the basic story framework:

  1. Setting
  2. Complication
  3. Turning Point
  4. Resolution

When they ask you sales interview questions, think through all your own personal experiences.

Then choose one experience each time to best represent the full range of your skills and abilities.

These stories should come more naturally once you complete steps one through ten here.

At the end, always ask for next steps. I wouldn’t get too caught up in “closing” people.

Just let them know you’re fired up about the opportunity and want to take next steps with them. And next steps are to meet in-person for an interview.

#11: Ace the In-Person Interview

Always wear a suit and tie.

That’s what you you’ve been told, right?

Well, I don’t recommend it for hot tech companies. A jacket is a nice touch, but nothing more is needed.

Remember, most people in tech love flannels and tee shirts. I advise you to dress slightly above your audience, but still look like you are part of the team.

When you sit down, pull out two copies of your resume and one copy of your cheat sheet. Casually, place them on top of the binder resting in front of you.

Engage with them, tell them your story and always ask for next steps.

#12: Receive and Negotiate Your Offer

You want to love where you work. And they want you to love it too!

So, gather as many job offers as you can. Until, you find the right one. Then negotiate that one offer to close.

Traditionally, there isn’t too much negotiating for junior roles. But as I understand it, the more valuable you become to an organization the more leverage you will have.


This takes work. I went non-stop for three weeks straight. I was booking 2-3 interviews per day.

And I’m confident, if you follow these steps above, you will find your dream sales job at a hot tech company too.

how to get a tech sales job with no experience

How To Get A Tech Sales Job (Even With No Experience)

So you want to get a job in tech sales? Good, because you’ve come to the right place. In this article, we’ll explain how to go about getting a tech sales job, even if you lack experience. 

Step 1: Build A Tech Oriented Sales Resume

First things first. Just like any other job, you want to start with a solid resume. Think back to your past experiences and pull together a summary of the most relatable sales skills you can bring over into your new responsibilities as a sales representative in the tech industry.

Not sure what those relatable skills might be? No worries, we’re here to help you out.

For starters, if you have any sales experience at all from a previous job that’s absolutely a great place to start. Whether or not you’ve specifically sold technology, if you’ve gone about selling anything, much of the selling process remains the same.

You’ll still be uncovering as much information as you can about your prospective customer in order to learn what it is that they want or need and then tying the underlying reasons behind that desire back to your product or service.

What if you don’t have any previous sales experience?

Don’t worry, you can still find a way. At the end of the day, sales is simply the profession of persuasion. No matter what kind of work experience you have, you’ll almost certainly have had to do some kind of persuading.

Whether it was persuading your co-workers to jump on board with your new idea or even to go eat together at a particular restaurant, what you’ve been doing is persuading people. That said if you really can’t think of any situations where you’ve done some kind of persuading, well… perhaps you may want to reconsider a profession in sales.

Let’s move on. So now you’ve got your resume all built up and polished. What next? Getting interviews. 

Step 2: Begin Your Job Search Process

There are many ways you can go about this. You can go directly to a company’s website to look for open positions if you have a specific one in mind, but more often than not you’re going to need some help with even identifying what companies you’d like to work for.

This is where platforms and recruiters can come in handy. If you do some searching online there are plenty of them, even ones dedicated specifically to tech sales, that you can leverage. Of course, we can help you too. 

Step 3: Make Sure You Prepare For Your Interview FAR Ahead Of Time

There are a few things you’re going to want to do before you step foot into the room with your potential employer.  

  • Research about the company itself.
  • Learn when they were founded.
  • Learn their products and and unique value proposition.
  • Discover what differentiate them from the other players in the market.
  • Find any other details that seem important to be informed about.
  • Recent news about and announcements from the company are always a plus.

Step 4: Learn Your Target Company’s Sales Process (And Picture Yourself In It)

Above all, you’ll want to really familiarize yourself with their sales process. After all, you are applying for a position in sales.


You need to understand the following things intimately:

  • Who are your potential customers are and how will you find them?
  • What tools or services will you be using?
  • If you’re not sure, this can actually be a great question for you to ask during your interview.
  • What are the tools and services the company is using today?
  • Why did they choose to bring on those specific tools?


Questions to ask yourself:

  • How are you going to reach out and get connected with your prospects?
  • What’s the reasoning behind your strategy?
  • Based on the company’s target industry, market and customer profiles – what methods do you think will be most effective? And why?


Here’s what you should do:

  • Schedule a time to have a conversation with your prospect to learn more about them.
  • What is their current situation?
  • What problems are they dealing with?
  • Based on what you uncover, think of the ways you can best articulate the ways in which your company’s products or services can alleviate those pains.


In technology sales, the step that usually comes after the discovery is the demo.

This is where you as the sales rep have the floor and opportunity to clearly illustrate to your prospect how their lives will be improved through the use of your product or service.

You do this by relating the benefits your company provides to the problems they voiced to you during the discovery part phase.

There may be a bit of back and forth after that in terms of negotiation and the need to deal with a procurement team but soon after the demo the final step you’ll want to end with is closing the deal.

This is when your prospect and the involved stakeholders have made the decision to move forward in doing business with your company and are willing to put pen to paper, or so to say.

Step 5: Revisit and Master Stages of the Sales Funnel

A great way to think of this process from a high level is to think of it much like a funnel.

In fact, the concept of a sales funnel is very prevalent in the world of technology sales and is something you’ll likely want to familiarize yourself with as well.

You can easily do a search for this term online and get a quick understanding of what it is and how it would work for a business. As a quick summary though, it’s the idea of taking a large number of leads, which you then refine into prospects based on some target criteria, and ultimately convert into customers by putting them through the sales process.

Awesome. So you’ve done your research and taken the time to understand what the sales process is and how it works. All that’s left for you to do now is nail the interview.

Step 6: Nail The Interview

There’s a ton of advice out there around the best ways to approach an interview but here are a few pointers to help you get started.

Be on time. In fact, show up a bit early so you have some time to spare. Trust me, having that little extra time before the interview to level-set and get your head straight can only bode well for you.

Next, keep in mind that most hiring managers are likely looking for 3 primary qualities.

Those are competency, character and the ability to learn.

Competency is simply a measure of whether or not you can do the job at hand. If given the opportunity, would you be someone the company can rely on to get things done effectively?

Character is important because let’s face it, whether you like it or not, co-workers are people we end up spending a lot of time with. As such your potential boss is probably looking to see if you’re someone he/she can stand having around and, more importantly, if you’re someone he/she can trust.

The last quality you want to make sure to convey to the person at the other side of the table is the ability to learn.

As a bonus, you may want to think about emotional intelligence too. This will help you to become more empathetic as a sales professional, something that employers definitely care about.

Sure, it’s great and all if you’re a good person who’s capable of doing the job at hand but, that’s not all that’s important in the work place. Change is imminent in all aspects of life and business is no different. Your boss is going to want to know that, should it become necessary, you’ll be someone who’s open to new ideas and willing to adapt to the changing circumstances rather than someone who is always stuck in their old ways.

Again there’s a ton more information out there on additional things you can do to do well on an interview but keep these things in mind and you should land your dream job in tech sales in no time. Now go out there and make it rain!

emotional intelligence sales job 2018

The ONE Unwritten Trait You Must Possess To Get a Sales Job in 2018

Imagine walking into your office on Monday morning only to discover that after months of courting your top prospect has terminated their relationship with you. Would you throw a fit and blame your sales team? Or would you take a moment to compose yourself and then start figuring out what went wrong? While we’d all like to believe we would choose the third reaction, emotions can be a difficult beast to tame. And although equating intelligence with emotion may seem like an oxymoron, emotional intelligence now accounts for 80% of the qualities responsible for success in the workplace.

And if you happen to be in the market for a new sales gig, emotional intelligence is one the most underrated qualities you can possess as a sales candidate.

The challenge? You can’t easily claim that you’re an emotionally intelligent person during an interview because it’s not a numerically measurable KPI.

Emotional intelligence on a resume is like a deflected pass in basketball. You know it makes a difference, but it’s hard to prove the ROI. 

So, What Exactly is Emotional Intelligence?

In a nutshell, emotional intelligence involves a person’s ability to recognize and regulate their own emotions as well as the emotions of others.

A study of Fortune 500 companies found that salespeople with high emotional intelligence “outperformed those with medium to low EI by 50%“. With numbers like these, it’s no wonder an increasing number of sales professionals are investing in the development of their emotional intelligence to obtain the following qualities.

Self Awareness:

Those with high emotional intelligence are self-aware, which means they know their strengths and weaknesses when it comes to customer relations. This is important as it allows you to understand how you come across to potential clients and promotes a relationship based on understanding.


Self-control is also a trait of the emotionally intelligent and is especially important in sales. Dealing with clients is unpredictable, to say the least, which means the ability to control your emotions could be the difference between a closed deal and a lost one.


Empathy is the ability to understand what others think or feel. In other words, it’s the ability to put yourself in your prospective clients’ shoes in order to understand them better.

Much like self-control, empathy can save a strained professional relationship. Rather than pushing your own agenda, empathy allows you to understand where your client is coming from and enables you to provide them with what they need in that moment.

Fortunately, while some individuals naturally exhibit high levels of emotional intelligence, it is also a skill set that can be improved upon with the following practices.

Key Takeaways For Improving Your Emotional IQ

1) Scheduled Self-Reflection:

Salespeople are notoriously busy. Between answering and sending out emails, managing client relationships, and putting out proverbial fires it can be difficult to carve out some downtime.

Although it may seem counterproductive to put your day on hold for self-reflection, it could be the secret weapon you need to increase your sales. It takes time to examine our behavior and set intentions for change, without it our desire to improve is a moot point.

Whether it’s riding the subway or waiting for your spin class to start, find the time to ask yourself some introspective questions such as:

What did I do well today, and how can I continue that behavior?

What caused me to react poorly today?

What can I do differently next time?

2) Practice Empathy:

Take a moment prior to your interactions to view things from the other side of the table. Sure, your prospects may have a need for what you’re selling, but they likely don’t have the time to understand everything that you offer. This means they need you to be their valued shortcut that helps them to make an informed decision without wasting precious time.

3) Practice Responding, Not Reacting:

Remember the scenario above about losing a top prospect? The first two scenarios are examples of reacting to an emotional trigger, while the last scenario is an example of responding.

In contrast to an unconscious emotional reaction, responding involves making a conscious choice about how you will act. So, the next time someone cuts in front of you in the Starbucks line or uses the last of the coffee creamer at work – practice your cool, calm, and collected response.

Nobody said being a salesperson was easy, but there are times when it’s undeniably worth it. While the challenges you face every day may never change, your reactions can — all it takes is a little practice.


Networking for Salespeople – Part II

This blog post is actually a continuation of a previous blog post on how you can improve your networking abilities. If you haven’t already read the first part of this series, check it out here.

Now for those who are caught up or just want to get into the nitty gritty of ways you can use body language and tonality to further improve your networking game, read on!



Dean Park is a seasoned tech sales professional that’s been involved with a wide range of organizations from startups to enterprise businesses. Dean is also a sales mentor at GrowthX Academy in San Francisco.

Get high paying sales jobs at Rainmakers!