A corporate salesperson sells a service or product to help earn a profit for a company. Salesmen are typically considered the most important employees in a business, since they can often be solely responsible for generating its income. In many industries, salesmen receive the majority of their salary from a commission, or a percentage of what they sell.
Corporate salespeople work in a wide array for industries. Their job is to describe the product to potential clients or customers, showing them the benefits of owning the product. Sometimes, members of corporate sales teams will give a demonstration of how the product works. In the end, the salesmen must close the deal, turning the client or customer into a consumer.
A member of a corporate sales team must possess strong written and verbal skills. She should be professional, organized, motivated, energetic and work well alone or as a member of a group. She must also be resilient, as even the most accomplished salesperson faces rejection on a regular basis. But perhaps more than anything, a corporate salesperson needs to be knowledgeable, and even passionate, about the product or service she is selling.
There are no set requirements to become a corporate salesmen. Some learn on the job, such as those in the retail and automobile industries. Other fields require their salespeople to have a college education, with courses in business, economics, finance and statistics. Either way, proven abilities to make a sale are the best credentials a salesman can have.
Corporate salespeople employed in the manufacturing and wholesale industries held about 2 million jobs in May 2008, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Of those, 61 percent worked in wholesale. There were 440,000 employed in technical and scientific fields in 2008. According to the BLS, jobs for sales merchandisers are expected to grow by about 7 percent from 2008 to 2018. That’s slightly better than average growth for all other occupations.
Salesmen earned a median salary of just more than $70,000 per year, according to the BLS. The highest earners were employed in the computer systems industry, averaging a yearly salary of better than $80,000. Those working in the wholesale electronics field generated just below that. Still, according to the BLS, earnings for salesmen varied greatly by the company for which they worked and amount of merchandise sold.