You’ve got the gift of gab that drives deals and revenue. But racial pay gaps, discrimination, and access to capital can hinder your own financial success. Use these tips to earn what you deserve and reach your money goals as a Black sales professional.
1. Know Your Worth and Earn Top Commissions
Sales are largely commission-based, so do your homework on potential earnings at top firms. Tech giants like Oracle, SAP, and Salesforce compensate very lucratively. Research average base salaries, commission structures, and incentive trips too. Remember studies show Black salespeople earn about 10% less than others. When interviewing or starting a new role, advocate fiercely for a pay package that reflects your worth and selling prowess.
2. Create a Variable Income Budget
Sales income fluctuates, so accounts for both peaks and valleys. Track your baseline monthly expenses for essentials. Then budget discretionary spending as a percentage of your lowest earnings months. When pay surges during peak seasons, invest or save the difference so you stay prepared for slower months. Having a plan prevents panic.
3. Build an Emergency Fund
Shoot for an emergency fund savings goal of 3-6 months’ worth of basic living expenses. This provides a crucial cushion in case you lose a major client or switch jobs. Having cash reserves allows you to take smart risks like joining startup companies with potential upside or pursuing new verticals.
4. Max Out Workplace Retirement Accounts
Immediately enroll in any 401(k) plans, HSAs, and other tax-advantaged workplace retirement accounts, especially if matching funds are offered. Increase automated contributions by 1-2% annually. Say yes to profit-sharing too. Time and consistent compound growth will build substantial retirement wealth over decades of saving.
5. Create Side Income Streams
Leverage your sales skills through side gigs like real estate, insurance sales, MLM businesses, affiliate marketing, or independent consulting. Just ensure they don’t compete with your full-time employment agreements. Additional income diversifies your cash flow and provides protection from reliance on one revenue stream.
6. Learn High-Income Skills
Develop expertise that commands top dollar like enterprise software, medical device sales, cybersecurity, data center infrastructure, etc. Attend conferences and training to stay up-to-date on high-earning specialties. Landing a niche with big-deal potential boosts your income significantly.
7. Insulate Your Earning Potential
Disability insurance replaces income if health issues arise down the road. Get adequate coverage to sustain your lifestyle if commissions ceased. Also, get life insurance to protect family finances. Having insurance gives peace of mind if fortune ever sours.
8. Invest Wisely Over Time
Contribute to mutual funds or ETFs in a diversified brokerage account with a portion of any surplus income. Let compound growth work its magic over decades. Avoid speculation. When investing in individual companies, only allocate the money you are willing to lose.
9. Give Back to Aspiring Sales Reps
Mentor new salespeople at your company or through associations like the National Association of Black Sales Professionals. Speak on panels at colleges. Provide tips and open doors for the next generation to access lucrative sales careers.
10. Join Your Community
Surround yourself with fellow sales pros who understand the hustle. Groups like the NSBP offer connections, mentors, and continuing education. A tribe helps you level up your skills, mindset, and motivation when faced with hurdles. Having people to lean on prevents burnout.
Stay dialed in. With persistence and smart money management, you can maximize earnings, build wealth and thrive. Now go close that next big deal!