Yesterday, I had to afford a little smile to myself on the way back from work. I’d just got out from a client meeting with three of the shrewdest, wiliest yet captivating people I’ve had the pleasure of meeting. They turned, toiled, pushed, pulled and twisted my arm practically out if its socket before eventually nailing me down to a deal. You had to admire them. Three veterans of the sales world, or so it appeared…

Imagine my surprise when I discovered that not one, but all three had taken up the challenge of a late career change. They’ve been in the industry for a combined total of 9 years. Just 9 years! Yet they well and truly worked me over. One had spent decades in HR, one in PR and the last of the trio was a journalist.

But it really got me thinking. Why is it too late to change careers? Why not pursue a challenge if you’re unhappy in your current position? Why not be bold and take a chance into the unknown?

Well, it’s not too late. I love my job – it’s rewarding, it’s challenging and it’s fun, and I’m positive you’d feel the same way. So, I’ve prepared a varied list of 5 courses of differing levels throughout the UK and Ireland that hopefully, will open the door for you, too. You just need to step through it!

London School of Business and Finance
MA in Strategic Marketing

The LSBF needs no introduction – it’s one of the most highly recognized business institutions not just within the UK, but throughout the world. The course focuses on strategic sales management, CRM and consumer behaviour research, so you’ll be ready to hit the sales ground running, as it were, with this under your belt.

Dublin Institute of Technology
Sales Management Elective

Consistently ranked within the SEF Top Universities For Professional Sales Education list, with 2015 being no exception. Students looking to choose a BSc in Marketing, a Master of Science in Marketing or Strategic Management, or an MBA can elect to take the Sales Management course. Make sure you do – the programme is led by Dr. Anthony Buckley and also includes access to their sales academy.

University College Dublin
Diploma in Sales Management 

Another entry from the emerald isle, though this time we hop across the Dodder to the University College Dublin. Also included on the SEF Top List, UCD is the only business school in Ireland to pinch the Triple Crown (and no, we’re not talking about the Six Nations or American Pharaoh here) of business by attaining AACSB (US), EQUIS (Europe) and AMBA (UK) accreditation. Their 9-month Diploma in Sales Management will see you “putting structure and science behind sales force decisions” while discovering the ins and outs on how to get those deals closed.

Coventry University
Strategic Sales and Marketing Management

Heading back to the mainland, now, and up into the heart of the country we find Coventry University’s Strategic Sales and Marketing Management BA (Hons) Degree. Here you will gain insight into customer orientated business approaches, strategic market planning, CRM implementation as well as picking up all the tools and techniques you need for a career in marketing and sales. The course, being an undergraduate programme, provides the perfect platform for relative fledglings to the field. A good place to start.

Edinburgh Napier University
Business Management Marketing and Sales

Last but not least, we have the extremely flexible Business Management Marketing and Sales online MSc from Edinburgh Napier University. This course will help provide the balance between work life and study, as you make the transition across to your new profession. So, what can you expect from the course? It’s an 18-24 month endeavour that will focus on new venture planning, event organization and sales pipeline management. The city’s beautiful, to boot.

Due to space constraints, here are a few honourable mentions:

  1. University of Westminster
    MA Business Management
  1. University College Birmingham
    Marketing Management BA
  1. International Career Centre
    Sales Executive Diploma
  2. City University of London
    Becoming Your Client’s Trusted Advisor
  3. University of Portsmouth
    MA Sales Management

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