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Do you believe this claim?

I was emailed a link to a training organization's site that made the following quote:
"The top 4% of all professional salespeople sell 96% of all goods & services."
- Harvard Business School
How credible do you believe that to be? I have not researched whether HBS is the true source of that statement. - by Ace Coldiron
I was emailed a link to a training organization's site that made the following quote:
"The top 4% of all professional salespeople sell 96% of all goods & services."
- Harvard Business School
How credible do you believe that to be? I have not researched whether HBS is the true source of that statement.
I think that they got the figures backwards... The top 4% might sell 96% more than the aforementioned 96%, but 4% of sales people don't sell anywhere near 96% of all things sold here in Hawaii. The top 4% in Aflac don't come anywhere near 96% of new business production.

It's the size of your sales force that matters in sales. Take our Property Casualty Business, for example, and looking at new business only, the top 4 sold two times the next 10 in premium volume. Is that a measure of sales? Or is it the number of bodies/clients that matter? It depends. The company wants bottom line. If one client does it, great... they don't seem to care. Me I do.

Frito Lay, and probably 980,000 other shelf products are sold by sales people who stock and deliver as well. The top 4% have actually NOTHING to do with cigarettes and beer, chips and dip, sashimi and miso soup... tires and belts, windshield washer, and s spark plugs.

In certain industries... like maybe real estate, jet planes, luxury boats, fast cars and loose women, the 4% might be the 96% sold when it comes to DOLLAR VALUES... but it'll never likely be in product volume.

In my opinion that is... :)

Aloha... :cool: - by rattus58
What definitions are being used: sales; all goods; all services; top 4%; 96% -- that's a fairly open ended and ambigious claim so because of that it's not credible.

Of course when these variables/terms are defined it could be true.

MitchM - by MitchM
Harvard has been the anchor of credibility for some very false claims.
  • According to ________, a study of Harvard graduates found that after two years, the 3 percent who had written goals achieved more financially than the other 97 percent combined!
  • Network Marketing has been taught at Harvard Business School.
There is no evidence that Harvard ever was involved in such studies. In the first example, some very well known and respected author/trainers have perpetuated that claim. The second example is of a misrepresentation that tens of thousands of people have been exposed to from reading MLM hype. Eventually the credible and respected leaders of that industry exposed the myth and condemned such false claims

I believe the claim which is the topic of this thread is both farfetched and lacks credibility. - by Ace Coldiron
I see and hear from sales trainers, authors and others involved with sales repeat the Pareto law that 80% of the sales are generated by 20% of sales professionals. I find those stats difficult to believe.
- by rich34232
I agree with Rich. I have previously worked for two Fortune 25 companies, and the revenue distribution curve never looked as the Harvard review alledgedly states. There's something missing here. - by David Mack
Looking at many weeks of our division sales goals listed by representative, I would have to say this statement is false. Additionally, neither does the Pareto Law stand true. There are those who obviously are not nearly skilled at selling and those whom are very skilled and developed their territories for the past 15 yrs. Going into my 3rd year now in my territory, I have done pretty good for myself but nowhere near where I want to be. - by johnwsnow
Harvard has been the anchor of credibility for some very false claims.
  • According to ________, a study of Harvard graduates found that after two years, the 3 percent who had written goals achieved more financially than the other 97 percent combined!
  • Network Marketing has been taught at Harvard Business School.
There is no evidence that Harvard ever was involved in such studies. In the first example, some very well known and respected author/trainers have perpetuated that claim. The second example is of a misrepresentation that tens of thousands of people have been exposed to from reading MLM hype. Eventually the credible and respected leaders of that industry exposed the myth and condemned such false claims

I believe the claim which is the topic of this thread is both farfetched and lacks credibility.

I am happy to see people like yourself, willing to take the time and help expose the misinformation, disinformation and lies by omission, that are being disseminated by those institutions d