Sunday, December 17, 2006

You have got to love selling

Any entrepreneurial venture requires a deep commitment to selling. Unfortunately, sales was never my forte. In fact, I have always had a distinct and very strong aversion to anything having to do with sales. I suspect this is because I always felt that so many sales and marketing efforts smacked of being borderline or outright manipulation, and to my mind, manipulating a consumer is a truly reprehensible thing to do.

I have no problem with providing information or showing a consumer how they can benefit from a product or service, but to my mind, there is a line between providing information that a consumer voluntarily wants and trying to manipulate the consumer in an involuntary manner.

There are lots of gray areas here, and many people are all too eager and willing to exploit those gray areas, but my inclination is to avoid the gray areas unless it is crystal clear that any "selling" is strictly informative and voluntary in nature, and not manipulative or involuntary in any way.

I think there are far too many people who enjoy the manipulation aspect of selling. My strong suspicion is that real selling can be done without the manipulation, but the evidence strongly suggests that my view is the minority view, or that a lot of sales people are unwilling to label many of their practices as "manipulative."

-- Jack Krupansky

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