Meet Sam, a Senior Account Executive, on our Restaurant Sales team! Sam graduated from Indiana University in 2021 before joining our team, and he is now celebrating his very first Yelpiversary. Today, Sam is sharing what the transition from college to a career has been like, how Yelp’s Sales Development Program has set him up for success, and more!
How did you know that you wanted to pursue a job in sales?
The funny thing is, I didn’t know I wanted to work in sales. However, the first time I noticed my ability to be able to sell was in my junior year of college. I was on the Merchandise and Apparel Committee for the Indiana University Dance Marathon. During Dance Marathon, I was supposed to help sell apparel and help pick out clothes for the buyers. I had a group of four come up to me and tell me that I sold each of them by buying three more shirts and hoodies than they planned on before they walked in and complimented my sales skills. The rest is history.
What was the transition from college to a career like for you?
My transition from college to career was pretty smooth. Luckily, Indiana University prepared me for my first day on the job up to my first anniversary. I pride myself on being able to learn on the fly, having an outstanding work ethic, and being open to feedback. Yelp’s training taught me to become more curious and ask the right questions, whether on the phone or chatting with coworkers.
As a recent college graduate, how has Yelp helped put your new-job jitters to rest?
I believe Yelp has a very healthy work-life balance, which has helped the new-job jitters go away. During training, we had plenty of moments where we could talk with others one-on-one, participate in team-building exercise games, and chat with our managers about things other than work. I have felt very comfortable in my job, and I’ve been able to meet others virtually and make friendships without having to meet them in person.
Tell us something you learned from the Yelp Sales Development Program that made you a better salesperson
Becoming more interested than interesting. Being a great salesperson isn’t all about standing out on the phone with a crazy personality. Learning about the business owners’ needs and then providing solutions is the best way to get the sale. If there isn’t a need, there won’t be a sale. Ask questions, listen, and you’ll be well on your way.
What does a typical day look like in your role?
A typical day in my role consists of rounding up with my teammates and manager in the morning and working on role plays to get the voice warmed up. I then line up the calls I’m most excited about for that day early on, so I can set the tone early for a productive morning and gain momentum and confidence for the rest of the day. I keep SportsCenter on in the background so I can have occasional moments to look up and give myself small breaks before refocusing. During lunch, I play a game of FIFA to keep my competitive edge, so I’m ready for the second half of the day. From lunch onwards, it’s full steam ahead, and I end the day vetting some new accounts, so I’m ready to get after for the next day.
Tell us about some of your goals
When I first joined Yelp, I wanted to learn how to become more confident talking with complete strangers and learning to sell to them. After my first six months at Yelp, I told myself that I wanted to achieve bonuses and earn as many promotions as possible before I hit my first anniversary at the company. I hit my best month ever in June and received my 3rd promotion the next month to become a Senior Account Executive. I told my manager when I hit my goal in March that I was able to hit higher than that, and I was thrilled to see that I was right. My manager and I worked together to make sure we could make that a reality.
How do you stay motivated to hit your goals when you’re having a tough day?
Tough times don’t last, but tough people do. I firmly believe that, and I remind myself of it if I’m having a bad day. Sales is like a rollercoaster. Some days you can feel like you’re the best salesman ever, and other days you question if you should even be employed! Sometimes you need to walk away for five minutes and reset. When you have a specific goal in mind for what you need to hit for the day, week, and month that will motivate you to keep going. If you show that urgency and value on the phone, the revenue will come your way.
How does Yelp support your work-life balance?
Yelp has been phenomenal with work-life balance. Most of my friends work non-stop, so I can truthfully say that Yelp makes it easy for me to live the life I want to live and be able to do things I want to stay healthy and happy.
Want to work with Sam?
If you’re a recent or upcoming college graduate, a career in sales at Yelp may be the perfect fit for you! Check out some of our job openings to find an opportunity that interests you.