Sunday, August 1, 2010

My Illustrious Career...Part Twenty-four

Early in 1993, the embroidery company I had been working for
completed their re-location to Las Vegas.

Since I needed to get a job in a hurry, I turned to...take a
guess...another sales job!

Now, it's not that I love sales so much, in fact, I hate it...
but it is the only way for a slob like me to get into a quick
job, which is why I fall back to it so often.

I did a job where I had to go to different businesses and try to
set them up with a contract to bring in vending machines for snacks.
I had a pretty hard time with this one, and I did not do it for
very long.

(You must think I am quite the flake the way I blow through these
jobs...and you just may be right to think that).

Next, I answered an ad where I was going to try to sell tax services
to businesses. I must have impressed them during the interview,
because I ended up spending a week in Atlantic City, New Jersey for
training. I did well at the training, and when I arrived back home
they started sending me out.

I recall that the leads were secured by some office personnel that
were doing out-bound solicitation calls to small businesses in
the area. They set appointments for me to go out to them and try
sell them our income tax service. It was pretty good in the sense
that these were confirmed leads, so I was not just 'cold-calling'.

I don't remember what kind of money I was to make, or if I even
made any money during this run, because they really didn't give me
the chance to work it long enough.

I had done enough sales to recognize that often, you don't make a
sale during the first visit. If you try to pressure people too hard
on the initial call, you end up just pissing them off and they
will not buy anything. In this kind of sale, you have to lay out
the information for them, give them all the facts, and set a call-back
time for a return visit to discuss their questions.

The people that hired me expressed concern that I was coming back
from the initial call without securing a contract. I remember that
after only a few weeks, they began sending me out on sales calls
with one of the senior big-wigs to see what I was doing wrong.
On the calls we went on together, this big-shot pro did not get
any firm commitments either on his first try.

This did not stop them from 'letting me go', however, due to
poor performance. You would think that after going through the
expense of a plane trip from California to New Jersey, a week's stay
in a decent hotel with all meals included, as well as whatever the
training program itself had cost them, that they would at least look
at the system a bit closer before just canning me after about 6
weeks...especially in light of what their top executive was able to

This turned out to be the very last job I would ever do that had
anything at all to do with sales.

Peace be with you.


  1. If that's the way they operated, then it probably wasn't the kind of place you want to work at anyway...

  2. I really understand the difficulty of a sales job. Because unfortunately I sort of have to do this in my job these days. It is very difficult trying to explain to people that if they don't do this or that dental procedure they might end up with a worse situation down the road. It sometimes feels like I am 'selling" them the work when in actuality I am only trying to do my job. I blame the economy and the insurance companies for turning health professionals into salesmen. I am glad you did not have to do something that you did not like ever again. Life is too short to continually be forced into things you can't stand.

  3. I totally understand how difficult it is trying to make people to buy and the whole selling thing, Joe.

    I think it apparently wasn't the kind of job you want to work/spend your precious time for sure.
    Have a great Monday/week!
    B :)

  4. They probably canned you cuz they didn't want you to spread the word that the bigwig exec couldn't sell either.

  5. Oh sales...I think that's a tough one. You have to have just the right personality and a thick skin. Glad you got the hotel stay anyway!

  6. Sales must have been really hard. I agree with Pat. That wasn't the right place for you to work at.

  7. Oww..Sales jobs ... must need more patience and perseverance ...
    however, to make people interested in buying our product was something really hard..

    have a great Monday, Joe!

  8. eeek, this struck a chord! I've had my own fair share of sales jobs, too, down the line. Oddly enough, selling encyclopedia's, door-to-door, on a commission only basis proved the best one (but I was only 19, travelling up and down the country, with a bunch of other 19yr old girlies..)

    Oh, the tales I could tell (wink)!

  9. Thanks, all. Right, no more sales jobs.
    The part is, though, I did get a free trip to Atlantic City, and hardly lost any money gambling!

    Shrinky...I think you should tell us these tales...that's what blogging is for.