Looking for a job after graduating is overwhelming. Not only do you need to figure out what industry and company type are best for you, but also the role that you’d like to have!
But don’t worry – after years working with graduates that decided to start their career in sales, we’ve got you covered. If you too would like to explore the sales water and become a future business leader, keep reading to find out why working as an SDR in a startup could be a fantastic path to kickstart your career.
Ecosystem and Perks of working for a Startup
You made it! After three to five years of procrastination, continuously taking over the library for a couple of all-nighters, you made it, you’ve graduated and you are ready to become a business leader!
As you achieve one of the most important milestones of your life, a new one is about to begin, and it is now time for you to look for your first job out of university!
If you are anything like me, at this point you might be wondering what role would suit you best for your first job. You are still indecisive when it comes to that question after five years of preparation for that moment. Then, you are meant to work for a startup!
Working for a startup earlier in your career will also provide you with great knowledge in many fields and unique skills. Think diversity, flexibility, creativity, adaptability, responsibilities or Learning & Discovering, only to name a few.
When you start working for a startup, you are not on a job, you are on a mission!
With London being the third-largest tech hub in the world, and the leader in Europe, applying for a job here is like stepping into a giant candy store! The world is yours for the taking.
Okay, so now you are tempted to join a startup in a space that you really like, but to do exactly what? We’re glad to tell you that working as an SDR for a startup is also the best opportunity to start a career in Sales.
Why you should consider starting your career as an SDR.
Sales Development Representatives (SDRs) are the backbone of any kind of sales activity for every SaaS startup.
Depending on the company, this role can also be identified as Business Development Representatives (BDRs) or Sales Executives. Their role is to identify and qualify leads that an Account Executive could potentially close into a deal down the line.
SDRs are the hook of the business, making sure prospects know who they are and what they do. So as a Sales Rep, you are one of the most important organs of your company!
What makes a good SDR?
You can’t run before you learn how to walk, and that is particularly true when it comes to outbound sales and working as an SDR.
Inbound sales usually rely on marketing campaigns to attract consumers into using their products or solutions. However, an SDR focuses primarily on outbound sales, meaning that she or he will be the first point of contact when it comes to market the product to potential customers.
This is why SDRs needs to be comfortable with both the company and the product, just so they can advocate about it in the most efficient way. And if the SDRs share a common interest with the company or its product, even better!
(Sneak Peek: Looking to be the best version of yourself as an SDR? Watch this space for our next post!)
Four reasons to start your career as an SDR
- Working around a product or solution that is dear to you
When working an SDR, you are the very first person decision-makers (think Managers, Executives or C-levels) will be interacting with. Your goal is to present what your company does and eventually, create a potential long-lasting business relationship. That requires understanding your product, competitors and the industry you operate in on an expert level.
On top of that, the knowledge you’ll gather on your first year will build a strong foundation for the rest of your career. Ask any former SDR, and they will all tell you how crucial it is to choose a company or product that you love! It is also the best opportunity for you to start developing your network for your future enquiries as a Business leader.
FinTech, MedTech, EdTech, PropTech, HRTech, FoodTech TECH, you name it! The SaaS ecosystem is broad and ready you the possibility to work with a product that you specialise and believe in.
- Resilience and Soft Skills
The Sales Representative practice relies heavily on cold outreach. Your primary work will be identifying and qualifying prospects to create a new relationship, so you will be in touch with decision-makers that have little to no time to lose on their agendas. This is why coping with adversity and objection handling is one of the most important life skills you’ll learn and need as an SDR — without resilience, things can quickly get the better of us.
Starting as an SDR is the best school to train your resilience, and that is great! You will need to step back and reflect, plan and organise, be strategic and try again. You’ll often get 99 noes for one, yes, but it is that one yes what will make the difference, allowing you and your company to grow.
“Let me tell you something you already know. The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It’s a very mean and nasty place and I don’t care how tough you are it will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it.” – Rocky
Like Rocky said, being an SDR is about how much you can take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done!
- Career Progression
Working as an SDR in a startup is like skyrocketing your career progression.
You will grow with your Startup and sooner than you think, will have more and more responsibilities. Because startups grow really fast, you could be moving into an Account Executive, Account Manager or Customer Success Manager role within 8 to 12 months.
Your understanding of the market, of the product, of the industry…The skills you’ll develop are transferable within the different fields of any organisation, which makes startups the best school of entrepreneurship!
Last, but certainly not least, let’s talk compensation. Even though you should not base your career exclusively on that criterion, you should always seek an organisation that values you.
In comparison with almost any other discipline, working in sales will certainly provide you with great retribution, competitive salary and perks. It will also allow you to plan long-term personal goals and how to achieve them.
When it comes to salary, there is great potential in Sales. Even though commissions are often limited on entry-level roles, salary gets very interesting past the 8 to 12 month-mark, once you become an Account Executive.
As an example on average salary rates, a starting Sales Development Representative ranges on £25,000 to £30,000 basic with capped or uncapped commissions, that represent £6,000 to £12,000 on top of your basic.
Sales Impact Academy
There are endless reasons to work in Sales, but at the end of the day, it is all about what you want, and what is best for you!
We recently partnered with Sales Impact Academy, a brand-new sales education business with amazing potential. They have a panel of renowned teachers who will be able to mentor you for your new role through a 5-week course on how to be a top SDR performer.
Feel like this is for you? If you think that sales could be your go-to career, click here to send me a message and I’ll be glad to help you find a company you really like.