Friday, August 22, 2008

Salesperson seeking new opportunities

Recently a wine salesperson contacted me for advice on how best to look for a new position. I frequently get this inquiry, so I thought I’d post what my response was. Hope this is helpful for others trying to move within the industry.

“I'm glad you were able to find me on the web. With your education, you have many options in the wine industry, and I'm glad to see that you are already working within the industry.

With your sales experience, I'm sure you have cold called clients. I think there is nothing better than stopping in to the tasting rooms and seeing what you can find out. And since you are in the industry, most wineries offer free tastings to the trade. Not everyone you talk to at a tasting room will know about hiring plans of the winery, but it's a start. Some of the smaller wineries have been bought by bigger wineries, so find out who is who through the web or winery directories (Wines and Vines puts one out, and there are a couple of others). You should also see if the wineries have an HR department, and maybe try contacting the General Manager to find out if there are any openings. Selling yourself is just like selling a product, so act professional yet approachable, and trust your instincts when you are talking to someone. You are currently employed, so keep your inquiries confidential. Take a look through my blog to find out other advice, like places to look for jobs, etc. “

Another question frequently asked by jobseekers is how I get paid. Here is my response: “As a contingent recruiter, I am compensated by my client, a winery, when I find the right employee for a position they have open. I have never charged a job seeker for my services, outside of a gift of a bottle of wine for resume advice.”

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