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How to turn your college experience into sales experience

How to turn your college experience into sales experience

The Betts Team
June 17, 2015

Having graduated college just over a year ago, (yikes!) I’ve noticed a few hiring trends among entry level candidates. For many college graduates, finding and explaining transferable skills from the past four years is half the battle of finding a job. Lots of companies are looking for bright, hungry, and passionate recent grads.

Here are some ways to illustrate how you can use the best four (or so) years of your life as your jump into the job search.

Studying abroad

You might be wondering how traveling the globe can set you up for success in a sales role. Voluntarily putting yourself in uncharted waters (pun intended) you were constantly faced with new and uncomfortable situations, and this is a lot like sales. Showcase your study abroad experience to demonstrate that you lean into adversity – you don’t shy away from it.

College Athletics

You might not have thought your 3-point jump shot would come in handy for a career in sales, but we have some clients with a hoop in their office (I’m not kidding). Your competitive edge, understanding of what it takes to be a team member, and leadership skills are all transferable intangibles that can set you up for success in a sales role. One of my candidates played professional volleyball abroad for a year after graduation. He nailed his sales interview by explaining how what he learned on the court could translate well to a sales organization.

Greek life

Many Greek organizations have steadfast values that members stand by, just like many startups have core values and missions. Drawing on those values as well as any positions you have held can help you stand out from the crowd. You’ve learned and adapted to the strong culture of your Greek organization, and you’ve been a team player in the past—you can do it again at a startup!

On campus jobs

If you worked throughout school in a highly sought after position such as a resident assistant or student government executive, don’t undersell your experience! Highlight any problem solving skills you honed, experiences working under stressful circumstances, or times when you had to engage with higher-ups at the university. A college alumni tele-funding job is another great role with transferable phone skills to elaborate on during an inside sales interview.

Talking about yourself and your background can be somewhat awkward or intimidating the first time you do it. To ease the tension of this experience, be sure to practice with friends/family (or your recruiter!) before hopping on a first call with a hiring manager. If you’re interested in a career in sales at some of the hottest tech companies in Silicon Valley connect with us by clicking here

 Article Author: Alexander Hermann