- What is your definition of salesman?
- How is a salesman different from someone in another occupation?
- What attitudes do you think a salesman should have to be successful?
- What attitudes would hinder him?
But now as I reflect on the questions I can’t help feeling that they very neatly and very obviously go straight to the core of the challenges that face sellers in a Sales 2.0, Web 2.0, who-knows-what-else 2.0 world that we find ourselves thrust into. For example in my post on sales and marketing integration I talked about the blurring of lines and how traditional roles were morphing and the implications for the salesperson of the future as a result. If a salesperson needs to develop some online research skills, multi-modal communication skills, targeted marketing skills, and service-oriented skills in order to be able to get to a prospect, close a deal and retain the business then their role is no longer so singular in nature.
And while we have all likely lamented in similar fashion to the play’s central character Willy when he despairs "After all the highways, and the trains, and the appointments, and the years, you end up worth more dead than alive." (Probably when we have just lost a deal, our flight has been cancelled and we are stuck in the only corner of O’Hare that has nowhere to eat), this is in fact a very exciting time to be in sales and business in general as we begin to engineer probably the biggest paradigm shift of recent history.
But for now – let me turn those questions over to you – how would answer them?