I have been doing some research on lying in sales for my upcoming book Honesty Sells with Steven Gaffney and sadly for our profession there is no shortage of material. I thought this one in particular was funny because it’s written by a pastor who is both having sales people lie to her, and who think she is lying to them. Ironic…..
Onwards and upwards I suppose
2 responses to “Lying Cheating Sales People”
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I’m delighted you’re writing a book on the subject of honest in sales.
Integrity–or rather, the lack of–is a challenge for everyone that sells. Last year (April 2007) I wrote an article about the evolution of sales training for Chief Learning Office magazine. As part of my research, I had the opportunity to interview Zig Zigler. Zig, who has always been a zealot about integrity in selling, said to me, “Sales is the only profession where you get trained to persuade people.” I think we’d have to consider that trial lawyers are in the same situation, but that doesn’t change the fact that we have a significant responsibility to use that ability to persuade only in our clients’ best interests.
Like you, I’ve been working with salespeople for many years. I have found, without exception, that the sales professionals who are the most consistent in performing at or above quota are the ones that are honest with their customers, their employers and themselves.
Honesty alone isn’t enough to guarantee that a salesperson will be successful, but dishonesty is a strong indicator that they won
Can you please tell salespeople that “getting the sale” is NOT the most important thing? Customer satisfaction is the most important. I know of a company where the insiders promise anything to get a sale. When the IT people tell the salespeople that they lied about their software and it doesn’t do what they said it did, they respond “but if I said it didn’t do that, the customer wouldn’t buy it. Can’t we re-tool it a little so it does “X”? The tragic thing is, they really DON’T seem to understand that, NO, you can’t just reprogram software and add a bunch of features to please everyone you want to sell to. The program does what it does. If you can’t sell it, then you don’t need to change the product, you need to find your market! Find out who needs the basic version and sell to them, then add features and upgrades later on when the customers request them.