This is a dilemma that many sales people face. And as a sales recruiter, we are sometimes asked to find someone from the competition. This does happen but does not happen as often as we think. There are 2 schools of thought on this; hiring from the competition brings a sales rep who needs little or no training and hiring from the competition brings the “same old, same old”. Both employers and sales people need to consider the ethics of changing and potentially bringing over their customers. Did you sign a non-compete or non-disclosure? You would not want to end up with a law suit on your 1st day of employment.
It is not generally easy for customers to follow their sales people. What is the cost for your customer to follow you? Will they follow you and how long will that take? If they are in binding contracts, it may not be for a while or never at all.
Both the employer and sales person should consider what transferable skills does this sales person bring to the table? Have they successfully sold to my customers, even if it was not the same product? The employer should also consider what credibility that sales person brings to the table if they have successfully sold for their competition. What are your motives for jumping the ship?
As a sales person consider the following as a means of where your next gig could be:
Where have I sold successfully (territory and customers)?
Which products or services have I had fun selling and done well?
Where do I feel passionate?
What specific knowledge or skills do I possess?
What are the needs of the market now and in the future?
Answers to these questions should give you an indication of a possible next move; other than moving to the competition.