Selling face to face – the one hour meeting that can change your quarter or year. That’s pressure – and that is what I love. I like to look at it as an hour of opportunity and prepare for the meeting with a positive attitude and high expectations.
Being a National Account Manager (NAM) for a consumer electronics company is a great job – lot’s of freedom to make your own hours, usually you can work out of a home office, and you can see your results on the shelf when you do a store visit… NAM’s are usually well paid, with a decent salary and potential to earn quarterly bonus checks that are quite nice when you come in over quota!
But, make no mistake, the hours will be long, you will learn to dread airplanes, and you do have to learn to work with many different kinds of people. The buyers you interact with at the retailers move to new jobs fairly frequently, so it’s tough to establish and maintain strong relationships.
There is ‘paperwork’ involved, including forecasting units sold, reporting on sell-through, tracking inventory, managing the marketing funds (Co-Op and MDF) planning ads, and other account management activities. You either learn to love MS Excel, or your flounder in this amount of data – and I love my MS Excel!
The Sales aspect of the job is what brought me back time and time again. I love the meetings with buyers – not meetings in general mind you! I love planning them, doing my homework for them, the travel to them (I even love the security check in procedure at the front desks!!! – weird, I know!) But, most of all, I love my 45-60 minutes that the buyer commits to me and my company, our products and plans. If you have a great meeting, you can add products to the shelf and can plan on incremental revenue for the next year or so. I love that kind of leverage!!!!