A sales analyst's job can shape his company's future profits, because it involves the collection, analysis and reporting of sales as well as evaluation of the firm's overall performance. An analyst should have a master's in business administration or business management, or a degree in computer science. To stand out as a sales analyst, you need to develop communication, presentation and motivational skills.
Communicate your requirements to your colleagues clearly. During interviews, demonstrate an ability to listen as well as talk, and remember that you need your co-workers' cooperation and trust to do your job. Develop and demonstrate communication skills in writing, because drawing up reports and compiling feedback is an essential part of the job. A good analyst will ensure he listens carefully to people's concerns and will avoid alienating any staff member.
Showcase your analytical skills. Much of the job entails analyzing market trends and geographical buying patterns, requests for proposals, coordinating response plans with sales managers, and preparing schedules for bidding. You also analyze which parts of the business are making money and which are not. An effective sales analyst helps the company strengthen its bottom line.
Hone your computer skills, and develop an advanced understanding of programs such as Excel, PowerPoint and Microsoft Word. Study and become an expert in computer programs related to database management. To excel at your job, you must ensure you are fully briefed on all relevant computer programs. Update your skills by anticipating and attaining new software pertinent to the job.
Study your company to know its strengths, weaknesses and potential. This entails an in-depth knowledge of which products are selling and the profits generated by each product. Also helpful is a business graph that can display sales performance for presentations and reports, and identifies who on the sales team is making the profit and why. Recommend promotion and personnel changes in departments depending on profit potential. A good sales analyst will make these decisions confidently and indicate how they will help the business.
Master interpersonal skills to gain the confidence of colleagues, from the most junior staff to the most senior. A bullying, domineering manner will serve only to intimidate the junior members or those who think their jobs are threatened, and antagonize the senior members. Use caution when dealing with departments or individuals whose sales performances are below average -- alienating them by being dismissive will reinforce negative attitudes and undermine potential. A good analyst can recommend unpleasant steps, such as the removal of staff, while retaining the respect of those workers and management.