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Monday, 28 November 2011 09:38

Operational Efficiency

About six months ago I came upon a tiny green bag for sale at the Portland airport for $5. It sports a compact capacity of nearly a half a cubic foot, and curiously was positioned as a make-up bag. I saw a opportunity, not to transport a ridiculous amount of make-up, but to prove myself a proficient packer. Prove to who, you might ask... well the nay-say-er sales person for one, and then the half a dozen people I showed the bag to following the purchase, none of whom appreciated my “all I need is heels, a dress, and light toiletries... which will totally fit” assertions. 

Published in Sapient Salesman
Monday, 21 November 2011 23:34

Conversational Chutzpah

My friend Declan is great; he’s a sarcastic cynic who always seizes the opportunity to rope unsuspecting strangers into his verbal mind games. So you can imagine my amusement when, over dinner, he regaled me with the stories from his recent Chicagoland interviews. You see, Declan used a recruiter to line up his day, and as efficient as 10 back to back interviews may seem on the surface, the schedule did come with some filler opportunities. Not one to pass up a chance to sharpen his wit, Declan “phoned in” answers to a b-list position with perhaps more honesty than they prepared for. While auditioning for a sales gig located in boo-foo Iowa, Declan responded to the question: “So, do you think you’re a good salesman?” by looking the interviewer dead in the eye and declaring: “Are you kidding?!? I could sell a Catsup Popsicle to a little girl wearing a white dress!” 

Published in Sapient Salesman
Wednesday, 16 November 2011 16:19

The Risk of the Pitch

I have a way of repeating stories verbatim each time I recount them, and it’s proved quite handy during my transition to sales. To command a pitch with the certainty and expedience required to deliver it before your subject reaches their floor takes time and practice. Such an endeavor is only complicated by your desire to sound more human than robot. Yet even after you’ve successfully achieved the perfect balance of content and spin, a new risk arises: you forget to, or simply stop, listening to yourself. 

Published in Sapient Salesman
Tuesday, 08 November 2011 18:15

Look Right

How many tourists do you think had to die before cities like Sydney decided to paint warnings on the roads advising pedestrians the direction of the oncoming traffic? Half way around the world everything from water swirls to traffic circles are literally backwards and I find myself scurrying across the street like someone is after me. I mean I *know* the traffic flows from the right down here, but my (perhaps paranoid) proclivity forces me to gaze toward tail lights, and the result is nothing less than spastic. I walk around just fine, looking straight ahead as I dance with approaching locals who also step to my right to avoid collisions, but just as soon as I reach an intersection the freak show ensues, spinning my head about as tho I was being attacked by bees. 

Published in Sapient Salesman

Erin Wilson is the author and publisher of the Sapient Salesman

A "sapient salesman"?

 A sapient salesman is tasked with being a psychologist, technologist, empathist, humorist, conversationalist, and a dozen other “ists” in the course of practicing their salescraft. Most people can’t wear that many hats, and these tidbits are designed to minimize your millinery mandates. Read more

The Book

Look for The Sapient Salesman: Spinning Life into Lessons, One Tale at a Time on later this year!

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