Career Insight: Area Sales Manager (Fabric)
Why did you decide to become a Area Sales Manager?
I didn’t actively seek the role, it was word of mouth. I was working in a sales role but with another product – Furniture.
What path did you take into it? ?
I was working for an interior design practice we sold various products within the showroom. One of the furniture manufacturers approached me to go out on my own and represent the product directly.
What, in your opinion, is the best bit of being a Area Sales Manager?
My independence within the role, I am based at home and am able to structure my appointments as if it is my own business. What I put in, is what I get out in terms of more sales and better commission.
Every job has its downsides. What do you think are the worst bits??
The tough part is getting into new practices, it is often a challenge getting past reception but once you start thinking out of the box it most certianly gets easier and quite a challenge.
Is it what you expected when you first started out – and what’s different??
It is what I expected in terms of the role, but what’s different is that my boss is an amazing manager and has allowed me to really grow as an individual
What do the public least understand – or mistake – about what you do? ?
They think it is just fabric sales but actually it entails a lot more relationship management.
What kind of people tend to do well?
Characters in their own individual way, there is no set person type in sales but it does help to be full of personality, likable because people tend to want to spend more time with you and this enables you to sell more.
Also an important value is trust-worthiness. People need to know that if things go wrong, they have someone to turn too.
Finally, any advice you’d offer to people looking to get into this line of work??
Choose a product that you are passionate about because it is so much easier to sell something that you like. Focus on the relationships because people buy from people, it is not always about the actual product – more about the service/ relationship