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Like a Dutch Uncle

Are you familiar with The Peter Principle? You should be if you want to hang out on a business forum. If not, here's a one sentence tutorial: The Peter Principle states that "in a hierarchy every employee tends to rise to his level of incompetence."

You see that in hierarchies in all forms and the effect it has on governments, businesses, bureaucracies,--even monarchies. It's part of the human condition and none of us are immune.

SO--here's my question. Why is it that in the majority of sales jobs a person is expected to START at his/her level of incompetence--instead of ending up there? Take prospecting by cold calling for instance--that activity which has so many newcomers assigned to. That's an advanced skill!

OK--so my question is rhetorical, but only because it reflects reality. Newbies, there is not much you can do to change that reality other than GET SMART. Work at getting good at what you do, and quit working to survive the day. Expect no help, and any forthcoming help will be a blessing. USE COMMON SENSE in spite of the fact your assignment was not based on common sense by those above you wallowing in their own level of incompetence. BTW, if they knew how to do what they want you to do, they wouldn't ask you to do it.

And remember: LEARNING IS WORK. - by Gary A Boye
Gary,
I like it. (your post that is)
As one who was at the sales coalface for many years I sense that you have been there too working for people who didn't know how to do it themselves or used to know but had forgotten.
I do get very sad when I think about the number of new salespeople that get thrown into the "sink or swim" pool every year and the majority of them drown needlessly.
Not everyone can excel at selling but more would succeed with some support, training and coaching. - by Greg Woodley
Not everyone can excel at selling but more would succeed with some support, training and coaching.
Greg, for a lot of people, selling is a stopping off point because either they never decided what to do with their lives--or worse--never prepared.

So they find themselves in a sales job and continue their unprepared ways. Of course there are a minority who are serious, but coaching seems to only exist in their minds for the sports superstars that they watch on television. Without looking it up, how many can name Tiger Wood's coaches?

YES, coaching by the right person can have an enormous return on small investment. You think the best sales coach's phones are ringing off the hook?

For years I had the same empathy for the "sink and swim pool" that you have now. But it waned after a while. I have a nephew graduating from medical school this year. I think of the student loans he will have to pay off, but the kid was ready to pay the price. We have sales newbies that won't invest in a 20 dollar book. I keep my phone number on my signature and am surprised how few people will call to discuss a point with the editor of of the number one sales education site on the Web.

Here's to the serious people out there, Greg. Contrary to conventional wisdom, the competition is not fierce at the top. As Tim Ferris has said: "There is just less competition for bigger goals." - by Gary A Boye
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