Some people are born salesmen. I know one guy who sold everything, from heavy machinery over fertilizer, plastics to whatever, without ever having more than a cursory understanding of the technology behind it. He’s just a very likable guy who knows how to talk to people. Of course you can learn all the techniques and become a good salesmen that way, but I think that to some extent it’s a gift, a combination of extroversion, likability and self confidence that you’re born with.
I am not that person. As a self-employed artist, there’s no way around doing your own sales, and I slowly and writhingly (is that a word?) have gotten used to that. But I sometimes wonder where I or where Chicken Wings would be, if I had a bit more talent in that regards. Or maybe it has to do with selling your own artwork? I don’t ever want to feel like push it on anybody, because I think it would somehow lessen or besmirch my work if it doesn’t speak for itself, and also because hate the feeling myself, when somebody tries to push something on me.
Anyway, Hans doesn’t seem to have it all figured out either. That’s a first, haha! So I’m in good company.
I was once visiting a former boss/friend who started his own bicycle shop, and he introduced me to his mechanic as “The one guy who holds salesmen in the lowest esteem.”
I chuckled and said “Adam, guess what I do for a living now?”
yep, I was doing outside sales for an automotive parts supplier.
But he was still right, it was just a bit ironic that I had been working as that I hated.
Also, when I started, I knew most of my customer base from being their delivery driver so they knew me, and knew I wasn’t giving them a line when I did actually try to get them to buy something new.
But I did hate trying to get new customers and eventually went back to working in the warehouse . . . which became its own nightmare before I quit the company.
And here in the US we had Jerry Closer. Great story teller. He made more money selling fertilizer for Mission Chemical Company by telling his stories than talking about fertilizer…
I always hated sales, I hate pressuring someone into doing something they don’t want, or what isn’t necessarily best for them. I’m fine with helping someone get what they came for, giving them advice – say in a bike shop. Granted I never had this situation but I had in mind when I worked in the bike shop that if someone wanted to buy a $250 bike there I would advise them not to buy such crap (I put them together, it took hours to get them to sort of work right), instead go on Craigslist, buy a decent bike in need of some TLC for $100, bring it in for a $75 extensive tuneup, and walk away with a much better bike for less money. Would probably be fired for that, but the hell with it, I care more about customers getting what they need than the company making a sale.