Sales is different from other professions because it seems to have different rules. Doctors, lawyers and many other professionals need to go to many years of school. When they’re done with school, they have to pass the medical boards or the bar exam before they can practice and if someone were to pretend they were a doctor or lawyer, they could be prosecuted for practicing medicine or law without a license. Furthermore, at least in the U.S., you may be allowed to practice medicine or law in one state, but that doesn’t necessarily allow you to practice in other states. Even after these professionals pass their respective licensing exam and practice, they must continue to keep up to date by earning continuing education credits from designated educational resources.
There is no standard educational or licensing process for salespeople. Just say you’re a salesperson and start selling and keep doing it as long as somebody will pay you to sell. You don’t need to earn continuing education credits. You aren’t required to keep learning. As a matter of fact, small business people, sole practitioners and solopreneurs may ‘sell’ so that they can deliver their product or services, but they often don’t think of themselves as salespeople. They read trade magazines, manufacturers’ updates, etc. to learn about what they do, but they may not put any resources into improving the effectiveness of their sales process. Consequently, there are millions of people that are trying to ‘sell’ that have never been educated as salespeople, never been licensed and aren’t required to prove that they actually know what they’re doing. As a matter of fact, I did an evaluation of a group a few years ago and 39% of the salespeople were found to be untrainable, which means that not only didn’t they know how to sell, but they couldn’t be taught to sell.