The Great Irony

I’m rel­a­tively new to this sell­ing thing all things con­sid­ered. So, maybe this is just me being naïve. Or maybe it’s a rev­e­la­tion that will shock all of you, but I have recently dis­cov­ered the great irony of sales.

What I’ve always heard my col­leagues and peers in sales say is not unlike what The Sales Swami wrote in the ini­tial blog. “It’s all I’m qual­i­fied to do.”

I know that’s not true, though, because most of the peo­ple I have worked with in sales are amongst the smartest, most savvy, most busi­ness minded peo­ple I’ve met. And, they work harder than any­one else.  There are mil­lions of kinds of jobs out there. With that skill set they MUST be qual­i­fied to do SOME­thing else, right?

(At this point I assume you real­ize we’re not sell­ing cor­po­rate real estate ads. This is REAL sell­ing. No offense to the ad people.)

And it can’t be for the love of the job. We all know that’s BS because this is not all that great of a job. The cold calls, the travel, the crappy hotels, the air­port Chili’s…. So, WHY do we do it? When I really think about it and dig a lit­tle fur­ther with other sales peo­ple, what I think we all believe is that when you’re in sales, you con­trol your own income.

You get out of bed, you bird dog a bunch of peo­ple, book sev­eral appoint­ments, man­age the deals, and even­tu­ally close business.

Clos­ing busi­ness is directly tied to your commissions.

It stands to rea­son, the harder and smarter you work, the more money you make. You con­trol your own income.

HA!

As it turns out we have NO CONTROL over our incomes.

Because INCOME implies that we GET the money.

Not just earn the money.

There are a bunch of peo­ple stand­ing in our way when it comes to GETTING the money. And the 2nd great irony — it’s not the prospects or clients.  It’s our co-workers in all the other func­tional areas of our com­pa­nies. The peo­ple respon­si­ble for build­ing, devel­op­ing, deliv­er­ing, imple­ment­ing and over­all mak­ing the shit we sold some­one actu­ally work in their envi­ron­ment.  Until that hap­pens, we actu­ally don’t get paid. We get spread­sheets with columns of num­bers of money we’ve earned.

Fan­tas­tic!

Money I’ve earned.

Beau­ti­ful.

The VP HR argues we don’t deserve bet­ter comp plan or base pay the next year because we’ve earned so much the year before.

WOULD SOMEONE PLEASE LOOK AT THE LINE THAT SAYS WHAT I’VE ACTUALLY GOTTEN PAID!?!?

Because last I checked money earned doesn’t pay for gro­ceries or mort­gages or col­lege tuition.

Ahem, yes, ComEd? Great. Hi. Thanks for putting me thru to an ACTUAL per­son.  I see that you’ve sent me another $237.89 bill for use of your util­ity. I do appre­ci­ate that. What I’m going to give you back is a spread­sheet show­ing what you’ve earned from me over the course of 2009. It will also show that I paid you 25% of each month’s bills. Now, I know that doesn’t seem right to you. And you may be con­sid­er­ing turn­ing off my power, but I’d like to show you why this works. You see, I, too, have a spread­sheet that shows how much I’VE earned. So, you see, I’m good for it.”

We’re not in con­trol of our incomes.

Which is the great irony of work­ing your ass of in sales.

Or is it just me?">

One Response to “ The Great Irony ”

  1. […] just your per­for­mance but the per­for­mance of all the other func­tional areas of the orga­ni­za­tion (as out­lined in an ear­lier post on Sales Swamis, The Great […]

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