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A Day in the Life of a Salesperson


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A career in sales can be equal parts exhilarating, rewarding, stressful, and lonely. No one understands this better than salespeople themselves. That’s why we surveyed 280 reps, managers, and leaders — across states and industries — to find out about their average workday, from how much coffee they drink, to their prospecting tricks and career aspirations.


Starting the day

“The early bird gets the worm” — or in the case of our research, 76% of salespeople rise before 7 a.m. What’s the first thing they do? Our survey says checking email is #1. Hitting the snooze button and exercise are the runners-up. One-quarter of respondents said they’re superstitious about selling, while two-thirds find magic in the coffee they drink.


Closing the deal

If only you could snap your fingers to hit quota every month. But sales is a process. Long before you get the signature, you must put in the time finding new opportunities.

Most of our group’s prospecting happens on social media, at networking events, and through referrals. Even when they’re not actively selling, 33% are still researching. Aside from closing, 50% put relationship building as their favorite deal-related activity. And the best day to connect? For 46%, it’s Tuesdays.


Making your numbers

Yes, selling is a numbers game — but only 40% of our survey say money is their main motivator, while 35% credit job satisfaction. And the best personality trait for sales success? Curiosity beats perseverance — by a nose.

As far as numbers go, 85% of respondents believe their quota is fair. One in three report making quota 75% of the time, while 52% say they always meet or exceed it. Nearly one-third get their best selling advice from colleagues, while one-quarter follow their own star. Where will they be in 10 years? VP of sales, say 31% of our pool.


Striking a balance

To say sales is a stressful job is an understatement. No matter how much you crush your month, it’s the 1st again before you know it and you’re back at square one. It’s why so many salespeople work such long hours and why stress management is key for avoiding burnout. Our survey shows that 61% of salespeople work weekends. To balance the sales stress, 62% say they exercise or play sports.

The favorite way to spend office downtime is reading web content, say 53%. Self-improvement is a weekly investment for almost half our respondents — 35% focus on books, while 15% prefer to solicit feedback.


Go beyond the quota

You’ve heard it from the salesperson’s mouth (or 280 of them to be exact). You know when they get up and why, what motivates them, and what helps them relax. These are the everyday details that lead to extraordinary success. But there’s more to life than that, right? What, we asked our respondents, would your day be like if you weren’t in sales?



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