Feedback from Sales

A comment left over at the Inside Sales Experts Blog provides a rebuttal to the common view of sales people by Product Managers:

Son, we live in the world of software , and that software needs to be sold. Who’s gonna do it? You? You, Mr. Product Manger? I have a greater responsibility than you can possibly fathom. You weep for your product and you curse the sales people. You have that luxury. You have the luxury of not knowing what I know: over zealous sales practices , while tragic, probably saved jobs. And my existence, while grotesque and incomprehensible to you, creates YOUR job. You don’t want the truth because, deep down in places you don’t talk about at parties, you want me in sales, you need me sales.
We use words phrases like cold calling, lead generation and closing. We use these words as the backbone of a life spent selling something. You use them as a punchline. I have neither the time nor the inclination to explain myself to a man who rises and sleeps under a blanket of the very revenue I produce and then questions the manner in which I produce it. I would rather you just said “thank you” and went on your way. Otherwise I suggest you pick up a telephone and make a sale. Either way, I don’t give a damn what you think you are entitled to.”


3 responses to “Feedback from Sales

  1. Ross Patterson

    Does the original commenter understand that Col. Jessup was bound over for court martial after that little tirade? That the point in fact was that Col. Jessup was a petty martinet, doing whatever he felt like, no matter how wrong or how detrimental to Truth, Justice And The American Way?

    Or do they, like me, just love Jack Nicholson’s ability to play bad men? 🙂

  2. davidwlocke

    Well, that sales guy isn’t coming to me telling me how he can’t close without this or that functionality. But, this sales guy forgets is that he is a generalist, sure sales expert, but there are plenty of them. Without me, without the implementors, this guy would have nothing to sell.

    I’ve never seen a sales rep waste their time with such a screed. I have seen a programmer try his hand at sales and come back saying that the stuff doesn’t sell itself. I’ve seen a programmer executive decide that his programmers could be sales reps, and then blame us when nothing sold. And, I’ve seen a sales rep throw away a retained customer, because his compensation for the effort was too low to get his attention for the five minutes it would have taken.

    Fire the guy. Hire the next one.

  3. davidwlocke, sorry to break it to you, but there are plenty plenty of programmers out there too, not only sales guys. Nowadays no one is irreplaceable. If a particular programmer can’t put in place a functionality that will make the product so much more attractive to the client, thus adding more value, there are plenty others than can.

    No, I’m not a sales rep. I’m actually a programmer. I don’t like stereotypes. I don’t like people to think of me as a nerd who can’t communicate, with thick glasses snorting when laughing with my friends. I can see the needs of the company and I am able to collaborate with people from other departments. Granted some sales people can many times be clueless, so can be some programmers. Can’t generalize… Programming is a science, but so is sales. A good programmer is not easily found, but neither is a good sales person. Selling is not as easy as it looks.