07 March 2006

Salespeople - a breed apart?

At a dinner the other evening, the conversation somehow got around to salespeople and commissions. The core of the conversation was that salespeople don't perform unless they are paid commission.

I had to disagree. I was thinking about a sales engineer I met not long ago. He put together a team and pulled in a contract worth £97 million in revenues. He wasn't paid a commission but he worked his socks off to close that deal. Perhaps more startling, within 3 weeks of closing the business he was asking for an account manager to take the account away from him. He enjoyed making the deal happen and account maintenance just looked like a chore to him. He knew instinctively that when you have an account like that it will eventually go away and he didn't want to be associated with failure.

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