Pilots, to a large degree, are like salesmen. They have to be confident to be good at their jobs. They have to practice relentlessly and plan out all the scenarios of the things that could happen when they're out there. Nothing is more important than preparation. They are also mighty competitive, both as individuals and as squadrons.
We have to think of society's portrayal of salesmen as not true to life but as that great American character making it against the odds, the hustler. It's not that we tend to think of salespeople as evil hucksters, but that the writers and directors see them as characters relying only on their wit, character and drive.
I came out of a culture in which my uncle, my father - they were all salesmen of one kind or another. My father was a manufacturer. He also, in effect, had to sell that stuff. And if he didn't literally do it, his men did. So, selling was in the air through my boyhood. The whole idea of successfully selling was very important.
This maybe the year when we finally come face to face with ourselves; finally just lay back and say it-that we are really just a nation of 220 million used car salesmen with all the money we need to buy guns, and no qualms at all about killing anybody else in the world who tries to make us uncomfortable.
Hunter S. Thompson
I've said it before, and I'll say it again: Politics Is the Entertainment Branch of Industry. C-SPAN's coverage of governmental proceedings is wonderful. Caution! Buffoons on the Hill! Wallowing in blabber and spew, regiments of ex-lawyers and used-car salesmen attempt to distract us from the naughty little surprises served up by deregulated corporate America.
Public life, politics and industry should all of them be within our sphere of influence.... If we are to infiltrate the professional and social activities of other people I think we must imitate the Totalitarians and organize some kind of fifth column activity! If better ideas on mental health are to progress and spread we, as the salesmen, must lose our identity... Let us all, therefore, very secretly be 'fifth columnists.'
John Rawlings Rees
Some people--Samad for example--will tell you not to trust people who overuse the phrase "at the end of the day"--football managers, estate agents, salesmen of all kinds--but Archie's never felt that way about it. Prudent use of said phrase never failed to convince him that his interlocutor was getting to the bottom of things, to the fundamentals.
When Americans are asked to rank professions in terms of honesty and ethics, insurance agents routinely end up near the bottom of the list - somewhere between politicians and car salesmen. Generally, insurers are seen as clever hucksters who prey on insecurity and ignorance to sell people what they don't need at prices they shouldn't have to pay.
The traveling salesmen fed me pills that made the lining of my veins feel scraped out, my jaw ached... I knew every raindrop by its name, I sensed everything before it happened. Like I knew a certain oldsmobile would stop even before it slowed, and by the sweet voices of the family inside, I knew we'd have an accident in the rain. I didn't care. They said they'd take me all the way.
Six billion of us walking the planet, six billion smaller worlds on the bigger one. Shoe salesmen and short-order cooks who look boring from the outside - some have weirder lives than you. Six billion stories, every one an epic, full of tragedy and triumph, good and evil, despair and hope. You and me - we aren't so special, bro.
Perhaps it is a testament to the power of modern marketing savvy that an obese man with heart disease and high blood pressure became one of the richest snake oil salesmen ever to live, selling a diet that promises to help you lose weight, to keep your heart healthy and to normalize your blood pressure.
T. Colin Campbell
The world and all its wisdom is but a booby, blundering school-boy that needs management and could be managed, if men and women would be human beings instead of just business men, or plumbers, or army officers, or commuters, or educators, or authors, or clubwomen, or traveling salesmen, or Socialists, or Republicans, or Salvation Army leaders, or wearers of cloths.
Mathematicians also make terrible salesmen. Physicists can discover the same thing as a mathematician and say 'We've discovered a great new law of nature. Give us a billion dollars.' And if it doesn't change the world, then they say, 'There's an even deeper thing. Give us another billion dollars.'
What do you think the Devil is going to look like if he's around? Nobody is going to be taken in if he has a long, red, pointy tail. No. I'm semi-serious here. He will look attractive and he will be nice and helpful and he will get a job where he influences a great God-fearing nation and he will never do an evil thing... he will just bit by little bit lower standards where they are important. Just coax along flash over substance... Just a tiny bit. And he will talk about all of us really being salesmen. And he'll get all the great women.
What a gulf between impression and expression! That's our ironic fate-to have Shakespearean feelings and (unless by some billion-to-one chance we happen to be Shakespeare) to talk about them like automobile salesmen or teen-agers or college professors. We practice alchemy in reverse-touch gold and it turns into lead; touch the pure lyrics of experience, and they turn into the verbal equivalents of tripe and hogwash.
What a gulf between impression and expression! That's our ironic fate""to have Shakespearean feelings and (unless by some billion-to-one chance we happen to be Shakespeare) to talk about them like automobile salesmen or teen-agers or college professors. We practice alchemy in reverse""touch gold and it turns into lead; touch the pure lyrics of experience, and they turn into the verbal equivalents of tripe and hogwash.
I have my own theory about why decline happens at companies like IBM or Microsoft. The company does a great job, innovates and becomes a monopoly or close to it in some field, and then the quality of the product becomes less important. The company starts valuing the great salesmen, because they're the ones who can move the needle on revenues, not the product engineers and designers. So the salespeople end up running the company.
I add my personal witness: Our missionaries are not salesmen with wares to peddle; rather, they are servants of the Most High God, with testimonies to bear, truths to teach, and souls to save. Each missionary who goes forth in response to a sacred call becomes a servant of the Lord whose work this truly is. Do not fear, young men, for He will be with you. He never fails. He has promised: "I will go before your face. I will be on your right hand and on your left, and my Spirit shall be in your hearts, and mine angels round about you, to bear you up"
Thomas S. Monson
What causes homophobia? What is it that makes the heterosexual man worry about this? I think it's because deep down all men know that we have weak sales resistance. We're constantly buying shoes that hurt us, pants that don't fit right. Men think, 'Obviously I can be talked into anything. What if I accidentally wander into some sort of homosexual store thinking it's a shoe store and the salesmen says, 'Just hold this guy's hand, walk around a little bit, see how it feels. No obligation, no pressure, just try it.'
Progress celebrates victories over nature. Progress makes purses out of human skin. When people were traveling in mail coaches, the world got ahead better than it does now that salesmen fly through the air. What good is speed if the brain has oozed out on the way? How will the heirs of this age be taught the most basic motions that are necessary to activate the most complicated machines? Nature can rely on progress; it will avenge it for the outrage it has perpetrated on it.
My father had the spirit and integrity of a scientist, but he was a salesman. I remember asking him the question "How can a man of integrity be a salesman?" He said to me, "Frankly, many salesmen in the business are not straightforward-they think it's a better way to sell. But I've tried being straightforward, and I find it has its advantages. In fact, I wouldn't do it any other way. If the customer thinks at all, he'll realize he has had some bad experience with another salesman, but hasn't had that kind of experience with you. So in the end, several customers will stay with you for a long time and appreciate it.
Look, in particular, at the people who, like you, are making average incomes for doing average jobs- bank vice presidents, insurance salesmen, auditors, secretaries of defense- and you'll realie they all dress the same way, essentially the way the mannequins in the Sears menswear department dress. Now look at the real successes, the people who make a lot more money than you- Elton John, Captain Kangaroo, anybody from Saudi Arabia, Big Bird, and so on. They all dress funny- and they all succeed.
I'm no part time dilettante photographer, unlike the bartenders, shoe salesmen, floorwalkers plumbers, barbers, grocery clerks and chiropractors whose great hobby is their camera. All their friends rave about what wonderful pictures they take. If they're so good, why don't they take pictures full""time, for a living, and make floor walking, chiropractics, etc., their hobby? But everyone wants to play it safe. They're afraid to give up their pay checks and their security they might miss a meal.
Which class is happiest, the rich, the middle class or the poor? A very successful executive of a large organization touches upon this vital subject in a long letter to all his salesmen. He uses as his text a passage from Robinson Crusoe which included this: ""My Father bid me observe it, and I should always find that the calamities of life were shared among the upper and lower part of mankind; but that the middle station had the fewest disasters, and were not exposed to so many vicissitudes as the higher or lower part of mankind.
B. C. Forbes
I am a Christian - but sometimes I feel very removed from Christianity. The Jesus Christ that I believe in was the man who turned over the tables in the temple and threw the money-changers out - substitute T.V. evangelists if you like... why in the West, do we spend so much money on extending the arms race instead of wiping out malaria, which could be eradicated given ten minutes worth of the world's arm budget? To me, we are living in the most un-Christian times. When I see these racketeers, the snake-oil salesmen on these right-winged television stations, asking for not your $20.00, or your $50.00, but your $100.00 in the name of Jesus Christ, I just want to throw up!!
When the worms are scarce, what does a hen do? Does she stop scratching? She does not. She scratches all the harder. A lot of businessmen have been showing less sense than a hen since orders became scarce. They have laid off salesmen; they have stopped or reduced their advertising; they have simply resigned themselves to inaction and, of course, to pessimism. If a hen knows enough to scratch all the harder when the worms are scarce, surely businessmen ... ought to have gumption enough to scratch all the harder for business.
B. C. Forbes
As a child, I ate up the image Carl strived to portray: An inspirational rags-to-riches tale of a go-getter emerging the hell of his sulfur-scented, Podunk Texas upbringing. With a community college dropout education, Carl managed to reach six figures as a mobile home lot manager when the trailer park industry boomed in the early nineties. He decorated his accomplishments with a large house, yachts, and weekly morale shindigs for his salesmen bursting with open bars and filet mignon. However, my mother was by far his prettiest accessory.
Mark Spitz had met plenty of the divine-retribution folks over the months. This was their moment; they were umbrella salesmen standing outside a subway entrance in a downpour. The human race deserved the plague, we brought it on ourselves for poisoning the planet, for the Death of God, the calculated brutalities of the global economic system, for driving primordial species to extinction: the entire collapse of values as evidenced by everything from nuclear fission to reality television to alternate side of the street parking. Mark Spitz could only endure these harangues for a minute or two before he split. It was boring.The plague was the plague. You were wearing galoshes, or you weren't.
All real estate agents should be put on a decommissioned naval frigate which is then towed out into the deepest part of the Atlantic and sunk. It's rather unfortunate that, in recent years, real estate agents have become comedy betes-noires. Rather like lawyers or used car salesmen. Every time they mention their job they probably get people amusingly making the sign of the cross at them or are subjected to some good-natured, humorous ribbing. This has the effect of distorting what I'm trying to say here, which isn't in the nature of a smiling roll of the eyes and a "Tsk, real estate agents, eh?" but rather "All real estate agents should be put on a decommissioned naval frigate which is then towed out into the deepest part of the Atlantic and sunk.
It is certainly true that imitation is everywhere, from sport to business, from dancing to dressing, from driving to singing. In fact, imitation is at the heart of competitive behavior and of almost any kind of social interaction. Like the fixed cost cum marginal cost argument that, as we pointed out earlier, is so powerful an argument that it can be applied to any and every thing, imitation is so widespread that, when taken literally, it is also everywhere. By this token one should see unpriced externalities in every market where producers imitate each other, thereby concluding that all kinds of economic activities should be allowed some form of monopoly power. Restaurants imitate each other, as coffee shops, athletes, real estate agents, car salesmen, and even bricklayers do, but we would certainly find it foolhardy to grant to a firm in each of these businesses monopoly power over one technique or another. This suggests that equating imitation with unpriced externalities leads us into a dark night in which all cows are gray.
Writers have come to master nearly every trade. They are inventors and entrepreneurs of character, plot, and dialogue. They are the eager scientists that can't wait to try out their new experiment. They are the maestros of the symphony that plays in their head, conducting what happens, where, and at what precise moment. They are engineers and architects that design the structure of their piece so it stands the test of time and continues to fire on all cylinders. They play mechanics and doctors in their revisions, hoping they prescribe the correct diagnosis to fix the piece's 'boo boos'. They are salesmen who pitch not an idea or a product, but themselves, to editors, publishers, and more importantly, their readers. They are teachers who through their craft, preach to pupils about what works and what doesn't work and why. Writers can make you feel, can make you think, can make you wonder, but they can also grab your hand and guide you through their maze. Similar to what Emerson stated in 'The Poet, ' writers possess a unique view on life, and with their revolving eye, they attempt to encompass all. I am a writer.
Rolf Ekeus came round to my apartment one day and showed me the name of the Iraqi diplomat who had visited the little West African country of Niger: a statelet famous only for its production of yellowcake uranium. The name was Wissam Zahawi. He was the brother of my louche gay part-Kurdish friend, the by-now late Mazen. He was also, or had been at the time of his trip to Niger, Saddam Hussein's ambassador to the Vatican. I expressed incomprehension. What was an envoy to the Holy See doing in Niger? Obviously he was not taking a vacation. Rolf then explained two things to me. The first was that Wissam Zahawi had, when Rolf was at the United Nations, been one of Saddam Hussein's chief envoys for discussions on nuclear matters (this at a time when the Iraqis had functioning reactors). The second was that, during the period of sanctions that followed the Kuwait war, no Western European country had full diplomatic relations with Baghdad. TheVatican was the sole exception, so it was sent a very senior Iraqi envoy to act as a listening post. And this man, a specialist in nuclear matters, had made a discreet side trip to Niger. This was to suggest exactly what most right-thinking people were convinced was not the case: namely that British intelligence was on to something when it said that Saddam had not ceased seeking nuclear materials in Africa. I published a few columns on this, drawing at one point an angry email from Ambassador Zahawi that very satisfyingly blustered and bluffed on what he'd really been up to. I also received-this is what sometimes makes journalism worthwhile-a letter from a BBC correspondent named Gordon Correa who had been writing a book about A.Q. Khan. This was the Pakistani proprietor of the nuclear black market that had supplied fissile material to Libya, North Korea, very probably to Syria, and was open for business with any member of the 'rogue states' club. (Saddam's people, we already knew for sure, had been meeting North Korean missile salesmen in Damascus until just before the invasion, when Kim Jong Il's mercenary bargainers took fright and went home.) It turned out, said the highly interested Mr. Correa, that his man Khan had also been in Niger, and at about the same time that Zahawi had. The likelihood of the senior Iraqi diplomat in Europe and the senior Pakistani nuclear black-marketeer both choosing an off-season holiday in chic little uranium-rich Niger... well, you have to admit that it makes an affecting picture. But you must be ready to credit something as ridiculous as that if your touching belief is that Saddam Hussein was already 'contained, ' and that Mr. Bush and Mr. Blair were acting on panic reports, fabricated in turn by self-interested provocateurs.