How Sales Skills Translate to Other Jobs

Joe Weinlick
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Feel mentally stuck in a sales career while you long to venture into more exciting, uncharted work territory? Fortunately, you are not the sum of your work history. In today's ever-evolving job market, you can use your transferable sales skills to flourish in a completely different career.

According to an article on Nexxt communication, research and planning, leadership and management, human relations and work survival are all categorized as transferable skills. Your effective ability to highlight your previous sales successes in each of these areas helps you reconstruct your résumé to land an interview in another lucrative field.

According to an article on, you should sell results instead of skills when using your transferable skills to gain access to a new career. The article explains that instead of relying on previous job titles, you should view your work experience as a set of previous sales successes to be transformed into similar successes in a thriving, unrelated occupation. Take the collective advice of both of these job-seeking powerhouses, and compose a resume that "pops" off of the page with each one of your transferable sales skills.

Persuasive Communication

Persuasive communication is arguably the strongest of all of your transferable sales skills. In this section, supply numerical data that supports your ability to listen to prospects and ask questions that lead them to find solutions within product or service offerings. Round out the section with a description of the negotiation techniques you used to overcome objections and ultimately convince the prospects to purchase from you.

Efficient Planning and Research

Use this section of your résumé to outline your exact planning and research methods used in your previous jobs. These transferable sales skills show potential employers that you have the ability to develop and implement strategies that get the job done.

Leadership and Management Roles

Management is an excellent transferable sales skill that warrants attention and further review from prospective employers. However, do not despair if you did not acquire an official role in management. Instead, elaborate on how you helped a new co-worker land her first client, for example, or expound on how your input and team-player attitude enhanced the bottom line of your work group's sales objectives.

Interpersonal Skills

Potential employers want to "see" how you can use your transferable sales skills for their benefit. Paint a visual picture of your superlative interpersonal skills by sharing credit for successful projects with others or explaining how your keen listening skills helped your boss, a co-worker or a client experience a much-needed, project-related breakthrough.

Professional Risks and Restraint

Knowing when to take risks and when to exercise restraint is a very attractive, yet often overlooked, part of your transferable sales skills set that can put you ahead of the job-seeking pack. Take your rightful place as one of the contacted interviewees by finding a creative way to include your dedication to meeting deadlines, acceptance personal responsibility, management of time and cooperation with clients, managers and co-workers within a section of your résumé.

Incorporate your transferable sales skills into job-specific résumés to tailor each skill to match the different positions that you apply for throughout your job search.

(Image Courtesy of JSCreationzs at


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