Examine your reasons for wanting lesser job

Dear Joan:
I am going to be leaving my sales management position to move and start over with a less demanding job.

My question is this: If I apply for entry-level positions should I have my professional resume to present? I fear I won't be seriously considered if I present a management history.

It sounds as if you've been through some rough times. Perhaps you've already done all the soul searching you care to do but please bear with me as I ask some questions you should think about.

Are you certain you wish to take a less demanding job or is it a less demanding boss (or situation) you're after? Perhaps a job change to a different company would provide the relief you need, without taking a demotion.

Will you really be happy in a non-management job? If you're thinking about re-entering the sales force, do you have a proven track record from prior sales jobs? Why did you leave sales in the first place?

Are you running away from something or running to something? If you are going back to sales because it more closely matches your job satisfaction needs, you will be in a much stronger position than if you're trying to run from an unpleasant situation.

If you are leaving behind a poor performance history, you are going to experience some tough times ahead. Leaving to start over won't be as simple as it sounds because employers will be hesitant to hire someone with blemishes they fear will resurface. Even if you apply for an entry-level job outside sales, this will be a problem. For example, if you indicate that you don't like the responsibility in your current job, they will assume you won't want it in any job.

You are correct to believe that a resume with a management history will not be strongly considered for a non-management position. Many employers will tell you that you are over-qualified. Many of them have been burned by over-qualified candidates they've hired who soon leave for greener pastures.

An alternative solution is to use a marketing letter. A letter of this type can replace a resume because you will list accomplishments that relate to the job to which you are applying. You can tailor your letter to suit the situation. You are more likely to be called in for interviews if you don't send a detailed history, which is certain to screen you out, before you can sell yourself.

When you compose your marketing letter, open with a strong statement about one of your most significant sales achievements. For example, "As an experienced sales professional, I achieved or exceeded my sales goals every quarter for four years."

A positive approach toward your goal rather than a retreat from it will yield the best results.

Joan Lloyd is a Milwaukee based executive coach and organizational & leadership development strategist. She is known for her ability to help leaders and their teams achieve measurable, lasting improvements. Joan Lloyd & Associates, specializes in leadership development, organizational change and teambuilding, providing: executive coaching, CEO coaching & leader team coaching, 360-degree feedback processes, retreat facilitation and presentation skill coaching and small group labs. Contact Joan Lloyd & Associates at (414) 573-1616, mailto:info@joanlloyd.com, or www.JoanLloyd.com 
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