Sales in one sentence
A salesperson is primarily responsible for sourcing and closing new customers, upselling existing clients, and forming business partnerships.
Who do they work with?
Sales works most closely with Marketing and Customer Success.
Sales is a high-value startup role
As a salesperson in tech, you will primarily be responsible for sourcing potential customers, understanding their business use case, and demonstrating how your company's product or service can serve them. Sales a highly valued role within any startup -- according to Gartner analysis, business buyers say direct (human) interaction with the company they are buying from is the most important factor influencing their purchase decision.
In other words, the sales team can make or break a technology company. Aside from a high-value role, tech sales roles are also the most available, according to Glassdoor research.
Sales is an excellent way for college students interested in startups to get their foot in the door and learn more about the industry. Most entry-level opportunities are as Sales Development Representatives, where you will spend most of your time prospecting potential customers and qualifying them as good fits.
After you've put in your time as an SDR, you'll graduate the Account Executive position where you will spend more time pitching prospects on the company’s offerings.
Learn from the pros
Meghan is an experienced sales professional currently working as a Mid-Market Account Executive for LinkedIn out of their San Francisco office. She sells LinkedIn's line of recruiting tools called Talent Solutions to medium-sized businesses.Starting out
Moving on up
Meghan was promoted to Account Executive after about a year in the Sales Development role.Fork in the road
Keys to success
The most challenging part of the role
Tips for would-be salespeople