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Things That Salespersons Cannot Do

Updated on April 21, 2014

Do you know the definition of “hard work?”

Is the answer

  • Digging ditches
  • Loading heavy bags of cement onto a truck for construction workers
  • Cutting and hauling logs for a living

If you answered any one of these three answers, you are wrong. Many people over the years have worked at these jobs and led happy lives.

But an equal ratio of people who have been salesmen or salespersons have suffered nervous break-downs, mental meltdowns, clinical depression or just ran away from life entirely by moving to some third-world country, changing their name to “Jose Alvarez,” and lived a simple-but-obscure life from then on.

I was formerly a citizen of the world of selling in advertising for a newspaper and “spots” for a radio station, and take my word. I wouldn’t do either again unless Jesus Himself appeared in my bedroom and told me directly, “Kenny, get back to selling.” Then and only then would I dare attempt such a thankless job as selling

A saleswoman's work is never done.
A saleswoman's work is never done. | Source
This is the prototype salesman who paved the way for today's "Road Warriors."
This is the prototype salesman who paved the way for today's "Road Warriors." | Source
Females make the best salespersons.
Females make the best salespersons. | Source
"I called on 25 clients and the 25 clients all said NO, so I need a room for two weeks just to forget what I do for a living."
"I called on 25 clients and the 25 clients all said NO, so I need a room for two weeks just to forget what I do for a living." | Source
REAL traveling salespersons.
REAL traveling salespersons. | Source
Salesmen always look sharp.
Salesmen always look sharp. | Source
"Now to get my quota with this huge sale of used pants."
"Now to get my quota with this huge sale of used pants." | Source

Before I begin my hub, "Certain Things That Salespersons Cannot Do,"

I want to debunk some myths and put to rest some unfounded rumors about salesmen and selling. You be the judge on which is which on the list below.

  1. All salesmen are sex-crazed.
  2. All salesmen are hard-drinkers.
  3. All salesmen lie just to get a sale.
  4. Selling is the best job a young man or woman could ever have.
  5. You can "make a killing" in no time if you can sell.
  6. Actually, selling is quite easy to do.
  7. Selling has so much freedom you will think you are on vacation everyday.
  8. There is a supportive "Brother (and Sister) hood of salesmen and salesperson.

"Certain Things That Salespersons Cannot Do"

  • Lose their temper on their first call to a client if the client says "no, thanks. I do not want to buy junk today."
  • Take unnecessary cell phone calls from friends when they are in the middle of a sales presentation.
  • (for women) show lots of cleavage in order to get a sale.
  • (for men) wear skin-tight jeans to accent his "privates" in order to get a sale.
  • Tell vulgar jokes to the client. Those days are over. Not many purchasing agents for churches appreciate vulgar jokes.
  • Take the potential-client out bar-hopping at 10 a.m. to score a big sale.
  • Flirt with the female client to get a big contract. (for men and women).
  • Make vulgar remarks (to get a laugh) about the children's photos on the client's desk, but realizing that the children belong to the client.
  • (for women and men) putting your feet on the client's desk.
  • Talk to the client's secretary as if she worked for you.
  • Show-up at the meeting with the client hung-over from a huge party the night before.
  • Flirt with the client's wife if she pops in to see her husband. The client will not appreciate you getting on all-fours to look up her dress.
  • Bribe the client with whiskey, girlie magazines or coupons for a free chicken dinner at their nearby BoJangle's Chicken restaurant.
  • Let this client see what his competition is buying from you. Not only is this illegal, but it can cost you your job.
  • Boast and tell the client that you and your boss are "tight." Then call him on your cell phone to ask about a price for the client, but the client finds out that the "boss," you have been talking with is your buddy, "Howard," who is as shady as you are.

Let me close by saying

that in the arena of selling, being told "no," is not a matter of if, but when. It will happen and there are . . .

"Things not to do when a client says, 'no'

  • Tear the client's shirt off and curse him in the face
  • Kick him in the shins until he collapses
  • Tell him how ugly his wife and kids are
  • (for women) Threaten to tell his employees that he, the client, has made improper advances toward you.
  • (for men) Threaten to tell her employees that you and her are having a hot affair
  • Glare at the client
  • Slam your briefcase shut
  • Shun a friendly hand shake from the client

So let's practice to give you some good training.

"No, I do not want any of your product . . ."

Now, "Mr. or Ms. Salesperson," what do you do?

"Lost another sale, boss."
"Lost another sale, boss." | Source


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    • kenneth avery profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenneth Avery 

      4 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama


      I have to agree with your point. If God did appear to me and ask anything I would die trying.

      Even sales--the emotionally-crippling, resentment-creating, grueling, tiring field of ad sales.

      Dear God, I love you, but do not send me back when I die, as an ad salesman.

      Thanks, tlcs for the good comment.

    • kenneth avery profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenneth Avery 

      4 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama


      Appreciate your stopping by and commenting. I like your comments for they always make me wonder if I have written something that was wise and I didn't know it.

      Thanks for making me think.

    • kenneth avery profile imageAUTHOR

      Kenneth Avery 

      4 years ago from Hamilton, Alabama

      Dear Heidi,

      you are one sharp girl. I was enjoying your comment and suddenly you sold me on your idea.

      Nicely-played. Thank you for your sweet comment.

    • tlcs profile image

      Trudy Cooper 

      4 years ago from Hampshire, UK

      Very good article! full of wisdom and quite witty! I think maybe if god did appear and tell you that you should be in sales you should definitely give it another a shot, if I was being paid to read articles and pay for the content I would have to pay you for this article as it kept me reading to the end! Well written.

    • tsmog profile image

      Tim Mitchell 

      4 years ago from Escondido, CA

      Lesson learned and those of experience share more for the trade of sales. Well written and a thought provoking hub. Your article points both misconceptions and reality. Selling is definitely an interesting life choice. This article will help those who are learning, Ken, thanks for sharing wisdom.


    • heidithorne profile image

      Heidi Thorne 

      4 years ago from Chicago Area

      As also someone who harks from the advertising sales world, I can definitely relate. Sales is hard work! It's mentally and emotionally taxing which can have a negative impact on health, too.

      But all of us are also selling our ideas to others every day. So we're all really in sales in some way. See, you're still in sales! :)


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