Work-from-home sales reps experience many benefits, from avoiding traffic jams to spending more time with their families. But there may be an adjustment period when changing from office to work-from-home work.
Remember to keep these tips in mind as you start this next professional chapter in your life:
1. Learn to Deal with Distractions
Whether you’re at home or in an office, distractions can hinder your work productivity. And though some of these distractions may overlap, working from home does add to the list. With a TV in the same room, social media access, dogs barking, and kids shouting and playing close by, there isn’t a shortage of possible interruptions.
It may take some time to learn how to effectively manage these distractions, but it’s critical that you do. For example, you can use a work-from-home app to lock you out of your social media accounts or hire a babysitter to stop by part of the day when you know you’ll need to focus on onboarding a new client.
2. Communicate with Your Employer
Being a work-from-home sales rep gives you the freedom to get your job done without someone looking over your shoulder, but this makes communicating with your employer even more important. Since you won’t actually be at your company's work place, make it a point to keep your employer in the loop. Be transparent about both your successes and your struggles. Update your supervisors about your ongoing projects. And ask questions.
3. Call in Sick
Just because you work from home doesn’t mean that you aren’t allowed to call in sick. If you’re not feeling well, take a day or two off so you can get well as soon as possible—that’s what sick days are for. You can't be productive if you're ill.
4. Don’t Sound Like a Salesperson
How many times have you picked up the phone only to hear a salesperson who sounds more like a robot than a human being? Consumers want a personalized experience. Avoid sounding like a salesperson. Don't read from the same script verbatim to every single person you call. This is why knowing everything you can about your product or your service is so valuable. Enjoying what you do is critical as well. If you aren’t excited about what you’re selling, you're going to have a difficult time getting other people excited about it.
Do your research and get to know each potential buyer in order to customize your sales pitch to them, explaining how they will personally benefit from doing business with you. Personal connections, especially over the phone, can help disarm prospective customers and pave the way for a more pleasant and productive discussion.
No matter what you do for a living, networking is always a critical part of the job. But when you’re working from home as a sales rep, you don't have much face-to-face interaction with other people in your field. Consequently, networking is even more important. Getting out of your home office to rub elbows with other people can keep you sharp and give you a break from some of the monotony that can accompany work-from-home work.
6. Be Prepared, But Think on Your Feet
As you spend more time talking to potential buyers, you’re probably going to hear a lot of the same objections. As a result, you’ll quickly learn what to say in return, slightly tailoring your responses to each person. But there will come a time when someone will stray from the usual arguments or ask unlikely questions.
Review what those questions are and learn to adapt. Being well-informed about the product or service you’re selling comes into play here, as well as your ability to think on your feet. You'll need to have some type of strategy in place to keep potential buyers interested—without having to turn to a co-worker for help.
7. Know Your Competition
This is important for all sales reps, not just those who work from home. In order to appeal to buyers, you need to understand what makes your product or service stand out from the competition. Know who your top competitors are, why consumers are drawn to them, and how you’re better.
8. Don’t Get Discouraged
Building trusting relationships with buyers doesn’t happen overnight. There are going to be plenty of times when you'll find yourself getting rejected. The key is to brush yourself off, learn from any mistakes you made, and move forward with a positive attitude.
Looking for a legitimate, work-from-home job? MPX is hiring!