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The sales stigma

July 16, 2010

I was talking with one of my friends who recently took a job in sales at a very reputable company. And even with that move, he has been questioned as to why he would go into sales after all that he has done before. Almost as if he had decided to sell all his belongings and move his family to some tropical destination to paint faces on coconuts for tourists. Actually… that sounds nice.

I believe that in most cases we are all sales people and it didn’t start in our professional lives. Remember when you wanted an extra scoop of ice cream or the latest and greatest whatevermajiggy when you were a child? Well we bartered, took on extra chores, and even pleaded we would listed and clean our room. If we didn’t ask, we didn’t get. And we certainly had to have a purposeful and well presented plan. Passion. Check. Enthusiasm. Check. Knowing your audience. Check.

I work in an integrated marketing agency and some of our best sales people hold the titles of creative director, client relationship manager, and PR specialist. We believe in our work, team, and that our end product is a solution to a problem. We breathe new life and creativity into stagnant situations and we get people to think. And when it is done, we get paid, receive referrals, and hopefully more work.

We establish relationships, instill trust, and bring value. We sell. We are salespeople and we shouldn’t forget or dispute it.

As I see it, my friend who made a career change has all of those qualities, plus he is a hell of a guy. My only question to him is how far he will go in his new “sales” career will take him.

What are you selling, oh don’t call me a salesperson, person?

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