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Five years ago, I posted a blog that was derived from a LinkedIn Sales Management Group. A range of people responded to the question, “What advice would you give a new salesperson?” To that list, I added my own observations.

While many sales techniques stand the test of time, others evolve based on changes in technology and culture. This updated list of tips is designed for two sets of users, new reps, and their managers.

1. Achieve mastery of the services that you sell and understand how your services compare with those of your competitors.

2. Achieve mastery in sales skills. Observe how top sales people perform their craft. Seek out constructive feedback on your sales skills. Work on those areas of your sales skills that need improvement.

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b2ap3_thumbnail_dreamstime_xl_32338321V2.jpgThree years ago I posted a blog entitled Tips for the New Transportation Sales Rep (http://www.dantranscon.com/index.php/blog/entry/tips-for-the-new-transportation-sales-rep-and-his-manager ).  In that blog I consolidated a number of ideas generated in a LinkedIn Sales Management group and added a few thoughts of my own.  To my amazement, it has received over 38,000 hits since it was posted. 

A few weeks ago I received a very interesting inquiry from a self-described “newbie” sales rep.  As a follow up to my February 2013 blog, I was asked about what a new account manager should do if his or her company does not provide either formal sales training or coaching in the basics of the freight transportation industry.  The following is how I responded to this question.

Ultimately, one gets out of a career what one puts into it.  Every individual must take responsibility for the array of skills and expertise that he or she acquires during a lifetime.  It is up to each individual to seek out and acquire the skills they need, not to wait for a particular company to supply them.  As a young sales representative or person in any entry level job in Freight Transportation, here is a pathway to success.

1. Speak with your colleagues in other departments 

Take some time to meet with people in each of the core departments of your company such as Pricing, Operations, Line Haul and Billing to learn as much as you can about what they do.  With respect to Pricing, find out about your company’s costing model.  Find out how it works so you are looking for the right type of freight on the right lanes at rates that work for your company.  Be inquisitive and learn as much as you can from each department.

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