Future in outside sales?

Hi all! I’m a few years into my current role as a sales rep at a mid-sized company. I’m really liking it, but I have a few fears moving forward. In your opinion, is outside sales a stable industry to stick with? How are retention rates for sales reps in your company? Is this an industry that I can grow and move up the ladder in? Just wondering if I should switch my career path before I get stuck in sales.

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Hi Miranda! Although I do not think the sales industry will completely disappear, it’s constantly evolving with new technological advances. There are plenty of resources that make salespeople’s jobs a lot more efficient and effective. Take Badger Maps, for example. I have been using this product for years, and the ability to optimize routes and create check-ins have made my job so much easier.

I think that as AI and other technologies improve and expand, some tasks from a salesperson job might disappear. But as sales methods evolve, so will the sales positions and their responsibilities.

Here is a great article on how the industry might change in the future. The bottom line is: the sales industry will never completely fade out, but depending on the company and new developments, there will be changes to how we do sales. You can definitely stay in the field, as long as you’re willing and able to adapt.

Not sure of the exact numbers, but I know that outside sales recruitment is growing at a far slower rate than inside sales. Like @graysonf mentioned, this is definitely in part because of evolving tech. Although a lot of selling is done on the web now, I don’t think there’s a complete replacement for outside reps who can develop relationships with new leads yet. If anything, the automating tech would just thin out the herd to only the best salespeople. So I think if you’re motivated to learn and grow with the new selling processes created by tech, you’ll be just fine as an outside sales rep.