What to Look for in an SDR Job (Sales Development Rep)


So you decided you want to make an impact in a fast-paced career, and are considering a Sales role. Great! An SDR (Sales Development Representative) job is where you can find your footing, and decide if this is the right path for you.

SDR Responsibilities

As an SDR, you’ll qualify leads—meaning, you will determine if people requesting more information (inbound leads) or people you’ve decided to contact on your own (outbound leads) are good sales prospects. This frees up salespeople or account executives to speak with only qualified leads. Typically, you will qualify leads using the BANT approach (Budget + Authority + Need + Time) to analyze their level of qualification, and use tools like email tracking to easily make the right connections.

While this role isn’t glamorous, it’s a necessary stepping-stone to a successful career in sales. The skills you hone in this position will enable you to find a product’s talking points, develop your communication skills, and work on your pitch to connect with potential customers.

Here are 3 points to consider when looking for an SDR role:

#1 The product.

You have to either really believe in the product that you’re selling, or be extra convincing. While the art of persuasion is certainly a valuable sales tool, your job will be easier and more rewarding if you can support it honestly. If the company has a product that you believe in, you will, in all likelihood, be more comfortable in your new role there. How well you know your product will also factor into your ease in the position.

#2 Communication and transparency.

SDR is not an extended gig. Depending on the market, most SDRs will move into a quota-driven sales or account executive role within the first 12–24 months. That said, a company that communicates what the expectations are, as well as your opportunities for growth, are markers of a positive job opportunity. Continued communication and transparency about your path and progress will help you develop in this role.

#3 Training and mentoring.

SDRs are easily one of the most coachable roles in a company. You’ll start your training by shadowing sales calls, and you’ll get feedback on your work by someone listening in on the calls you make. Being open to feedback and criticism in this role is a given, but you should also look for how a company structures and communicates their training, and what mentorship is available. The training you receive in the beginning will translate into your personal and financial success later!

Find an SDR role where you feel supported and well-trained, and you’ll be on your way to a good start in a sales career!

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Jonathan is a SaaS strategist and SalesLoft content specialist. He has extensive experience in sales development, account management, and B2B strategy.

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Kayla Kozan

Kayla Kozan

Director of Marketing at Ideal
Kayla spent the last few years studying Marketing and Entrepreneurship on 3 different continents. Now covering the latest in predictive analytics, workplace diversity and big data. She has a keen interest in tech and discovering underrated brunch spots.
Kayla Kozan