In sales there has always been career movement.  Most successful salespeople have a “hunting” ability for closing deals.  They also use this ability to close new deals for themselves in terms of a new job.

I believe this approach is intensified in the younger generations – Gen X and Gen Y.  This current economy is going to erode much of their loyalty as they watch companies shed employees.  This downturn is far worse than that of 2001, but it is two career-altering downturns in less than 10 years.  That has to have an effect on younger workers.

Some of this movement can be seen in this article from Managesmarter.com:

Even though it is a lower number than in years past, 16 percent of sales employers plan to increase the number of full-time employees on their payrolls in 2009, indicating that there will be movement in the industry this year.

That movement will be happening despite the market conditions. One-in-five sales workers said they will actively look for a new job in 2009, citing better pay and more career advancement opportunities as their primary motivators for hitting the pavement. In addition, 81 percent of sales workers said that they are passive job seekers, those that are not actively seeking a new opportunity, but would be open to one if they came across the right opportunity.

I always laugh at “passive job seekers.”  Who wouldn’t be open to the right opportunity?

Back on topic – I think we are heading for a tremendous jump in jobseekers once this economy recovers (in spite of what the media says, the economy will recover).  Retention is going to be far and away the top topic for all companies as they face the prospect of losing their top salespeople.

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