How to Make the Jump to SaaS Sales, from Reps Who Have Done It Successfully

Making the decision to transition from one industry or career path to another is a big step that deserves careful thought and consideration. However, it’s important to remember that it’s never too late to make a positive change, and, in many cases, the transition is much smoother than you could have ever imagined.

In this two-part blog series, Base sales reps share how they successfully made the jump from other roles and industries into SaaS sales. Read their stories below to start getting inspired!

Elyse Maldonado

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I always had the impression that salespeople are deceitful, forceful and rude. I heard it over and over, and I thought to myself that I wouldn’t be great at sales because I’m not pushy enough and never wanted to sound like a used car salesman.

With these preconceived notions, I opted for analytic roles, working with sales teams “behind the scenes.” I thought analytics were great and I learned what salespeople were ACTUALLY doing and what was needed on the backend in order to complete a sale. Ultimately, analytics became stale and the work became repetitive and mundane to me.

With my new-found perspective and respect of salespeople, I decided to make a move into the wild world of sales. Since then, what I’ve learned can be summed up in just a few words:

1. Listen
2. Question
3. Consult

Grant Napier

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When you break it down, “sales” is really a numbers game. Mathematical analysis can help sales leaders understand how a company should attack a market. Quotas, commissions, conversion rates, average touches, etc. are all a part of the mathematics world and play a key part in decision making. Any reporting feature is directly associated with a statistical breakdown of customer data. Sales is really a mathematical situation.

I know this because I was an applied mathematics major in college and am now a sales professional. Nerdy, I know. To be fair, going into school I didn’t know exactly what I wanted to be, but I knew two things: 1) I wanted to be challenged and 2) I was pretty good at math. It only seemed like the right decision to go with applied math. Whether it is studying combinatorics in discrete theory or proving fundamentals truths of abstract algebra, a degree in math is no walk in the park. I chose the degree because I saw the value in it moving forward. Now, I’m not going to lie and say that I use these fields of math on a daily basis because I absolutely do not. However, I will say that my degree was incredibly valuable for the way it taught me how to think.

The whole premise of mathematics is built on logic. It is easy to see how logic can be translated to a variety of things; however, it seems to work especially well in sales. The ability to rationalize and approach deals from a very logic-based standpoint is incredibly useful. At the end of the day, you are using logic to solve problems and prove the value behind a sale (not too much different from math). This is exactly why I thought a career in sales was right for me.

I know it isn’t exactly conventional, but I believe that a mathematics degree is possibly one of the greatest degrees for a career in sales. To me, if you are a logical individual, a problem solver, and someone who loves dealing with people, a career in sales is a no brainer.

Ready for a Change?

If you’re considering making a jump from analytics, mathematics or any other industry into SaaS sales, feel free to leave a question or comment for Elyse or Grant below. And if you think you might be interested in landing at Base, we’re hiring!

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