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Why Work in Sales? 9 Reasons & Tips on Answering as an Interview Question!

Marcie Wilmot

Certified Resume Writer, Career Coach, Business Writer

Working in sales can be demanding and challenging, but it can also be gratifying. Sales is an excellent career with a clear path full of excitement and potential for growth. So, if you’re contemplating careers and have wondered “why work in sales?”, keep reading to determine if sales is a suitable role for you.

Tips and Reasons for Telling a Recruiter Why You Want to Work in Sales

Why Work in Sales? 9 Great Reasons!

While working in sales might seem intimidating, there are different reasons people are attracted to this field. Here are nine excellent reasons to consider.

Group of business professionals who work in sales
  1. High Income Potential – You’re probably aware that sales can be a high-income role. Most sales-related positions are commission-based (with a base salary). So, if you work hard, your earnings potential is possibly unlimited. 
  2. Skill Development – If you’re looking for a job that will teach you many in-demand and transferrable career skills, consider sales. Beyond learning the art of persuasion and how to communicate effectively, you’ll also develop the abilities to be a creative thinker, adaptable, collaborative, and a strong storyteller. In addition, you’ll become adept at managing your time and stress.
  3. Resilience and Grit – You’ll develop thick skin. Salespeople face rejection daily. The resiliency you build will undoubtedly benefit you tremendously in other areas of your life.
  4. Growth Opportunities – Salespeople are constantly growing and learning. Continuous learning eventually leads to growth opportunities like promotions and senior sales positions. Many times, employers even pay for additional training.
  5. Flexible Scheduling – Salespeople frequently enjoy flexibility in their work schedules. Once they’ve met their monthly quote, it is up to the employee to determine how much more they want to work for commission sales. 
  6. A Foot in the Door – Sales might not be your ideal career choice, but remember that it can serve as an excellent career stepping stone. Many notable CEOs, managers, marketers, and others started in sales and quickly acknowledge how much they learned. If you’re a recent college grad or trying to switch industries, don’t overlook the possibility of using a sales position to get your foot in the door.
  7. Travel and Variety – If you like to visit new places and meet interesting people, being in sales might be right up your alley. Companies rely on salespeople to break into new markets and build relationships with prospects. There’s also a lot of variety in the day-to-day of a salesperson as they work to customize solutions for different clients. So if you prefer a non-routine workday, sales is a great fit.
  8. Job Security – Unlike other jobs, sales is always in demand. Nearly every company, no matter its industry, needs a sales team to tout its products or services – which means job security for you! 
  9. Low Barrier to Entry – One of the nice things about sales is that you don’t need an exceptional college degree or training to land a job. Even if you don’t have a college degree, you can likely get an entry-level sales job and work your way up. As long as you’re passionate about selling and want to help your clients, most employers will be ecstatic to bring you on board.

Are You a Good Fit for a Sales Job?

While a sales role might be perfect for some people, it’s not necessarily the right fit for everyone. If you’re considering getting into sales, assess your skills and personality first. See if this career would be a good match for you. Here are some personality traits and skills to consider.

skills image supporting skills you need to be successful to work in sales

Communication and People Skills

To be successful, you should be personable and an excellent communicator. Much of the job involves interacting with others and persuading them to see the value in your product or service. Being someone who enjoys building and maintaining relationships, as well as networking, is helpful.

Independent and Collaborative

Being self-motivated is a crucial part of being successful in sales because much of your time is spent working independently. However, there are times when salespeople are part of a team. So, having collaboration skills is useful.

Able to Handle Rejection

People in sales experience frequent rejection, sometimes multiple times a day. To succeed, they must be resilient and persevere until they close the deal.

Organized and Creative 

Finally, to achieve success in sales, you must be organized. You must juggle your clients, quota, budget, and other aspects of the job. Also, sprinkling creativity into the role will help you close deals, build relationships, and manage your role effectively.

How to Excel in Sales?

If you decide to pursue a sales job, there will be a few key things you should do to set yourself up for success.

  1. First, you should write a strong sales manager resume. Your resume and cover letter are the key to any sales job you are looking to land.
  2. Once you’ve landed the job, you should gain a strong understanding of the product or service. Learn about its features and benefits. Also, prepare yourself for any potential questions a client may ask.
  3. Next, develop a strong relationship with your customers. This means building trust and getting to know them and their needs.
  4. As you become more comfortable in your role, you must stay organized and keep track of your leads and deals.
  5. Lastly, remember that it’s always to your benefit to invest in continuing education opportunities.

Another Perspective: It Can Be Your Interview Question Too!

interviewer asking why do you want to work in sales

The question prompting you to read this article (why work in sales?) is also a common interview question. If you decide to pursue a sales role and land an interview, you’ll be asked the following:

“Why do you want to work in sales?”

To start, interviewers want to gauge your level of interest. If you are genuinely interested in working in sales, you will be able to speak passionately about the role and its tasks. Moreover, the interviewer may also want to gauge your skill set. Sales is a fast-paced and competitive industry, so you must be able to think on your feet and present an elevator pitch that resonates.

Finally, the interviewer wants to get a sense of your motivation. Why do you want to sell their products and services? Does commission drive you? Or do you enjoy working with people? Answering this question truthfully will help the interviewer determine if you are a good fit for the role and their company.

How to Answer “Why Do You Want to Work in Sales?”

So, how exactly should you respond when an interviewer asks why you want to work in sales?

  1. Convey your passion for sales – The interviewer wants to hire people who are genuinely passionate about sales. Without a strong internal drive, candidates won’t be able to withstand all the daily pressures that come with the role.
  2. Show that you can think on your feet – Salespeople face unpredictable situations when they need to think and respond quickly. By asking this question, the interviewer is testing your ability to think fast and communicate clearly.
  3. Indicate that you enjoy the challenge of selling – Sales is about persuading and changing people’s minds, especially in the face of rejection and competition. It would help if you showed interviewers you could handle the pressure. If you have any examples, now would be the time to mention them. 
  4. Express a sincere interest in the company’s products – Don’t just say you are interested in the company’s products and services. Do some research. Then talk about how you see the products fitting into the market and who would be the ideal target audience. 

What NOT to Say?

Knowing what NOT to bring up is almost as important as knowing what to say. Saying the wrong things could erase every good comment and example you’ve made. So when answering this interview question, here are a few things to avoid.

  • Any unprofessional language
  • Highlighting any experience that you lack
  • Only talking about the money or benefits
  • Saying that the job is only a stepping stone to the career you really want
  • Talking about conflict you’ve had with previous bosses or colleagues
  • Saying that you just need a job

Example Answers

Below are several example responses to the interview question: “why do you want to work in sales?” Use these examples to inspire your answer.

Sample #1:

I’ve wanted to work in a sales capacity for as long as I can remember. I make friends easily and have a huge network of professionals who come to me for guidance. After I build trusting relationships, I aim to provide value to clients, always looking for good opportunities to cross-sell and upsell products. I believe that I can successfully sell any product; however, I use yours personally and can’t wait to share it with my contacts and others.

Sample #2:

I am naturally competitive and always enjoy a good challenge. For me, selling is fun because I get to solve people’s problems while also competing with my teammates to see who can sell the most. I also like traveling and meeting new people, as well as the variety in the day-to-day of a salesperson. I have an internal drive that pushes me to perform at a high level and constantly seek success.

Sample #3:

Your products interest and intrigue me. I can’t wait to learn more about them and then inform others. I’ve already conducted my own research and have tried out some of your products, so I know how great they are. Coupled with my innate enthusiasm to sell, I know that I will be very successful in educating others about your products and all they have to offer.

To personalize these answers, consider the company you are interviewing with and how your skill set fits the specific role. Relate your answer to the company’s products. Then, emphasize your skills and experience. Last, be sure to communicate the reason YOU are passionate about sales.

Bottom Line

Sales isn’t for everyone. It’s filled with lots of pressure and rejection. However, some people thrive in this type of atmosphere, viewing the stress in a positive light and enjoying the thrill of closing deals. If you’re resilient, a strong communicator, personable, and organized, you might discover that you have what it takes to do well in sales. You might even find yourself at the beginning of a remarkable and profitable sales career.

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