I should add a quote from Peter Thiel's Zero to One where he distinguishes between sales and marketing.

    • Q: I often only have a few minutes in passing conversation with friends or coworkers to plant the seed of treating aging like a disease. My question to you is, what have you found to be the most effective point you can make in only a couple minutes that gets people to pause and actually think about the problem from a different perspective? 

      Aubrey: I tend to spend the first minute asking questions - discovering whether their main hangup is feasibility or desirability (even though the two do mutually reinforce), and a level down, whether they have actually thought about those questions at all. The goal is to identify just one thing you can tell them that pierces their armour of certainty - that lets them know they could be really messing up unless they let you tell them a lot more.

Compensating sales reps

SDR Compensation

    • Compensation was changed for the sales development rep (SDR) organization, a group of junior salespeople who make cold calls to find leads for senior sales people, but the change wasn't for cost-cutting reasons, he told us.

      The idea came from the new sales leader hired to run the unit. She believed "the compensation on these teams was not weighted enough towards performance. We decided to lower the base compensation and increase the variable pay and do it in a way that the people who were performing could make more money," Conrad explained.

      The changes angered some people, and caused them to quit.

      "This was not something that was driven by cost cutting," he said. "Companies change sales rep compensation plans all the time. As happens when you change sales rep compensation, there are always people who are upset about it. That happened in our case and we probably could have done a better job of explaining it to people."


Books I haven't read yet

How I Raised Myself From Failure to Success in Selling

  • by Frank Bettger
  • High-level summary
    • Part 1
      • Enthusiasm is the most important determinant of success.  If you don't feel enthusiastic, force yourself to act enthusiastic, and that will soon change how you feel.
      • If you ask enough potential customers, you will be successful.  To force yourself to ask enough people, keep records. Record how many calls you make every day, and which of these lead to interviews, and which of those interviews lead to sales.
      • The biggest enemy he ever had to face was his fear of speaking to strangers, both individuals and groups. To fix this he joined a group where he got repeated practice in speaking in front of strangers.  This also got rid of his fear of speaking to important individuals.
    • Part 2
    • Part 3
  • Part 1 - These ideas lifted me out of the ranks of failure
    • 1. How one idea multiplied my income and happiness
      • Summary: Enthusiasm is the most important determinant of success.  If you don't feel enthusiastic, force yourself to act enthusiastic, and that will soon change how you feel.
      • When starting out as a pro baseball player he was fired for being "lazy", when his lack of energy was really a result of nervousness / fear.  The manager told him to put enthusiasm into whatever he did next.
      • At his next baseball team he played with as much enthusiasm and energy as he could muster ("like a man electrified"), and within two years he was playing for the Cardinals and making thirty times his old salary.
        • He played better.
        • His teammates became more enthusiastic.
        • Instead of becoming exhausted from his extra exertion, he felt better, both during and after the game.
      • Two years after that, he had an injury that ended his baseball career. He then spent two unpleasant years collecting installments for a furniture company, then ten months failing at selling life insurance. He decided to switch to becoming a shipping clerk, but decided he needed to conquer his fear complex, so he took Dale Carnegie's course in public speaking.
      • Carnegie pointed out that Frank wasn't speaking with enthusiasm: "How do you expect your audience to be interested if you don't put some life and animation into what you say?"
      • Frank resolved to use the same approach that had worked well for him in baseball to sell life insurance, and it worked.
      • "Force yourself to act enthusiastic, and you'll become enthusiastic."
        • Ex: Pounding on a desk.
      • "I firmly believe enthusiasm is, by far, the biggest single factor in successful selling."
      • He knows one salesman who is very knowledgeable about insurance but can't make a living from selling it because he lacks enthusiasm, and another salesman who is far less knowledgeable but made a fortune because of his enthusiasm.
        • The successful salesman would recite this poem almost every morning:

          You are the man who used to boast
          That you'd achieve the uttermost,
          Some day.

          You merely wished a show,
          To demonstrate how much you know
          And prove the distance you can go...

          Another year we've just passed through.
          What new ideas came to you?
          How many big things did you do?

          Time left twelve fresh months in your care.
          How many of them did you share
          With opportunity and dare
          Again where you so often missed?

          We do not find you on the list of Makers Good.
          Explain the fact!
          Ah no, 'twas not the chance you lacked!
          As usual–you failed to act!
      • Walter Chrysler said, "more than enthusiasm, I would say excitement. I like to see men get excited. When they get excited, the customers get excited, and we get business."
    • 2. This idea put me back into selling after I had quit
      • Summary: If you ask enough potential customers, you will be successful.  To force yourself to ask enough people, keep records. Record how many calls you make every day, and which of these lead to interviews, and which of those interviews lead to sales.
      • TODO: Summarize the rest
      • [NW: This chapter seems to slightly contradict the previous one. In the previous chapter Frank says it was Carnegie's advice to be enthusiastic that got him to start selling again, but in this chapter he says it was his boss' advice to focus on the number of calls you make.]
    • 3. One thing I did that helped me destroy the biggest enemy I ever had to face
      • Summary: The biggest enemy he ever had to face was his fear of speaking to strangers, both individuals and groups. To fix this he joined Dale Carnegie's course, where he got repeated practice in public speaking.  This also got rid of his fear of speaking to important individuals.
    • 4. The only way I could get myself organized
    • Summary
  • Part 2 - Formula for success in selling
    • 5. How I learned the most important secret of salesmanship
    • 6. Hitting the bull's eye
    • 7. A $250,000 sale in 15 minutes
    • 8. Analysis of the basic principles used in making that sale
    • 9. How asking questions increased the effectiveness of my sales interviews
    • 10. How I learned to find the most important reason why a man should buy
    • 11. The most important word I have found in selling has only three letters
    • 12. How I find the hidden objection
    • 13. The forgotten art that is magic in selling
    • Summary
  • Part 3 - Six ways to win and hold the confidence of others
    • 14. The biggest lesson I ever learned about creating confidence
    • 15. A valuable lesson I learned about creating confidence from a great physician
    • 16. The quickest way I ever discovered to win confidence
    • 17. How to get kicked out!
    • 18. I found this an infallible way to gain a man's confidence
    • 19. How to look your best
    • Summary
  • Part 4 - How to make people want to do business with you
    • 20. An idea I learned from Lincoln helped me make friends
    • 21. I became more welcome everywhere when I did this
    • 22. How I learned to remember names and faces
    • 23. The biggest reason why salesmen lose business
    • 24. This interview taught me how to overcome my fear of approaching big men
    • Summary
  • Part 5 - Steps in sale
    • 25. The sale before the sale
    • 26. The secret of making appointments
    • 27. How I learned to outsmart secretaries and switchboard operators
    • 28. An idea that helped me get into the "major leagues"
    • 29. How to let the customer help you make the sale
    • 30. How I find new customers and make old ones enthusiastic boosters
    • 31. Seven rules I use in closing the sale
    • 32. An amazing closing technique I learned from a master salesman
    • Summary
  • Part 6 - Don't be afraid to fail
    • 33. Don't be afraid to fail!
    • 34. Benjamin Franklin's secret of success and what it did for me
    • 35. Let's you and I have a heart-to-heart talk

Enterprise Sales

The Enterprise Sales Guide

The Basics
Enterprise start-ups are often faced with this fundamental question: how can they establish an effective, repeatable, and scalable sales model? See below for some of our favorite articles covering the basics.

If SaaS Products Sell Themselves, Why Do We Need Sales? BY MARK CRANNEY (A16Z)
If You Build It, Will They Come? BY PETER THIEL (FOUNDERS FUND)
Scaling Sales: From Craft to Machine BY JEFF BUSSGANG (FLYBRIDGE)
Enteprise 2.0: The Science of Inside Sales BY SCOTT IRWIN (GIGAOM)
Forget Virality, Selling Enterprise Software Is Still Old School BY ROMAN STANEK (GOODDATA)

Pricing is undoubtedly one of the most important aspects of selling enterprise technology. It is also unfortunately one of the hardest to get right. Here are some of our favorite reads on pricing.

The Price Is Right: And for Early-Stage SaaS Companies, It Needs to Be BY STEVEN SINOFSKY (A16Z)
How to Price and Sell Your Startup's Product BY TOM TUNGUZ (REDPOINT)
Picking Your Pricing Model BY DES TRAYNOR (INTERCOM)
Software as a Service Pricing Strategies BY BYRON DEETER (BESSEMER VENTURE PARTNERS)

Hustling your first dozen
With enterprise sales cycles lasting six to nine months on average - and many times longer than a year - time is of the essence, especially for an early stage startup. A single closed deal can be the making or breaking of an early stage enterprise technology startups.

From SMB to the Enterprise: When to Move Upmarket BY ALEX NIEHENKE (SCALE VENTURE PARTNERS)
Design Your Initial Product Offering to Attract Fortune 500 Enterprises BY DEEPAK KUMAR (GENERAL CATALYST)
From Zero to 10,000 Customers in Two Years Using Channel Partners BY GABRIEL WEINBERG (DUCKDUCKGO)
If You Have 10 Unaffiliated Customers in SaaS, You Have Something BY JASON LEMKIN (STORM VENTURES)

Metrics: You make what you measure
No matter where you are in the sales process, you'll need to keep an eye on metrics like CMRR, ACV, CLTV to make sure you understand every nook and cranny of customer pain points.

Why Lead Velocity Rate is the Most Important Metric in SaaS BY JASON LEMKIN (STORM VENTURES)
SaaS Metrics 2.0: A Guide to Measuring and Improving What Matters BY DAVID SKOK (MATRIX PARTNERS)
SaaS Metrics 2.0: Detailed Definitions BY DAVID SKOK (MATRIX PARTNERS)
The 3 Key Analyses For Measuring Your Startup’s Product Performance BY TOM TUNGUZ (REDPOINT)
A KPI dashboard for early-stage SaaS startups BY CHRISTOPH JANZ (POINT NINE CAPITAL)

Scaling: Growing your sales team
Once you have proven product-market fit with early sales traction, an enterprise technology startup must scale their scrappy young sales team quickly and effectively into a specialized machine that can focus on each part of the pipeline. How do you go from 1 sales hustler to 5, 50 and more?

How to Hire Your First VP Sales and Not Screw It Up BY JASON LEMKIN (STORM VENTURES)
SaaS Manifesto Part Two: It's time to Build a Real Sales Team BY PETER LEVINE (A16Z)
When You Hire Your First Sales Rep — Just Make Sure You Hire Two BY JASON LEMKIN (STORM VENTURES)
Hiring Your Startup’s First Salesperson BY TOM TUNGUZ (REDPOINT)
Building an Enterprise Sales Team BY SEQUOIA CAPITAL (SEQUOIA CAPITAL)


There are times when it's best to be pushy / persistent

Definition of "pushy": "excessively or unpleasantly self-assertive or ambitious."

Barbara Corcoran - Shark Tales

Pushy People Deliver
Cactus Jack seemed to consider himself at least equal to the Sharks he was pitching for money. We weren't biting, and worse, Kevin O'Leary was treating him like an old person whose glory days were long gone. He cut the cowboy down to size by saying, "Your Body Jac will never succeed and you know it, Jack!" But Cactus was a natural-born salesman and simply didn't listen. He kept talking and reminded me a lot of the pushiest salesperson I had ever worked with: Carrie Chiang. Carrie didn't listen and was impatient and unbelievably annoying. But as a result she was a superstar dealmaker and had made me many millions of dollars over the years at The Corcoran Group, including closing the largest land sale in New York City's history: fourteen city blocks owned by an even more annoying character, Donald Trump. I regularly tortured Carrie by telling her that someone else at the office was making more money than she, and time and again she took the bait and sold another five million dollars' worth of property to prove me wrong.

I liked Cactus Jack for his persistence and pushiness [...] None of my Shark Tank partners has proved as pushy or as lovable as my cowboy from Iowa. Cactus is definitely a royal pain in the ass, but he's also the kind of partner I never check up on or worry about, because I know he's raising holy hell on my behalf should anything in our business fall off track.

John D. Rockefeller, Sr. - Titan (book)

That Rockefeller led an unblemished Christian life played no small role in his business accomplishments, for he appealed to the older citizens in town. During his first year with Clark, he hired someone to look after the books while he took to the open road to drum up business [Nathan: just like Bill Gates], traveling widely in Ohio and Indiana. Contrary to what one might expect, Rockefeller was a smoothly persuasive salesman. Instead of brashly trying to poach clients from rivals, he modestly outlined his firm's services. "I would go into an office and present my card and say to the man that I supposed his business connections were satisfactory, and that I did not wish to intrude upon him, but that I had a proposition that I myself believed in and believed it would be to his advantage, that I did not expect him to decide off hand but asked him to think it over and I would see him again about it." Orders to handle commodity trades poured in almost faster than he could handle them. "I found that old men had confidence in me right away, and after I stayed a few weeks in the country, I returned home and the consignments came in and our business was increased and it opened up a new world for me."

Rockefeller handled people adroitly and wasn't the cold curmudgeon of later myth. However, he was persistent, which pleased or displeased people according to taste.

There are times when it's best to spend money creating an image of success

Barbara Corcoran - Shark Tales

Gayla had great charisma and I knew her personality would hit a chord with every plus-size woman in America. She also dressed the part, which is essential for succeeding in business. I never regretted blowing my first commission check on my fancy Bergdorf coat, and wore it up and down the streets of Manhattan feeling like the million bucks I didn't yet have. It forced me to measure up to a whole new image, and whether or not my customers liked my coat, I at least looked successful enough to buy it. Wearing it, I felt ready to take on the world, and that's exactly what I did.

All the best money I spent in business was on the things that helped create an image of success. I copied the typeface of the famous Tiffany store for my first business card and used gray ink, at no extra charge, instead of the usual black. I rented my pink Princess phone, one dollar extra per month, because I felt just like a fancy business lady every time I answered the phone.

When it comes to building a successful business, I've learned to fake it till you make it--you've got to dress the part.

But then she seems to directly contradict this advice in another section:

Fancy Talk Don't Work
The next month Dan arrived in my New York office to sign the contract with his fancy new partner-CEO in tow. With one quick look at the CEO's power suit, I figured it had set him back about a thousand bucks. Dan's new guy spent two hours what Dan had been able to say on Shark Tank in five minutes. His words were sophisticated and my phony-baloney barometer was beeping in overdrive. I kept thinking about my $50,000 and how quickly this new CEO would spend it.

John D. Rockefeller, Sr. - Titan (book)

Neatly dressed and well groomed, Rockefeller was the first to arrive at and the last to leave work each day.

Misc Advice

Mark Cuban on sales:

- Everything he knows about selling, he learned by selling stuff door-to-door.
- You need to be able to quickly handle objections.
- When he was running his company he would give new salespeople a Cadillac and then tell them that if they didn't make quota the Cadillac would be taken away from them.

Barbara Corcoran on sales (from her book):

Part 1:
  1. If you don't have big breasts, put ribbons on your pigtails.
  2. Paint the rocks white and the whole yard will look lovely.
  3. If the sofa is ripped, cover it with laughter.
  4. Use your imagination to fill in the blanks.
  5. Offer the bigger piece and yours will taste better.
  6. Put the socks in the sock drawer.
  7. If there's more than one kid to wash, set up a bathtime routine.
  8. If you want to be in two places at once, borrow a reel-to-reel.
  9. It's your game; make up your own rules.
  10. There's always room for one more.
  11. Go play outside.
  12. When the clubhouse is quiet there's probably not making spaghetti.
  13. If you want to be a cheerleader, you better know the cheers.
  14. Go stand next to Nana and see how big you are!
  15. If you want tot get noticed, write your name on the wall.
  16. Sweep the corners and the whole house stays clean.
  17. In a family, everyone helps mash the potatoes.
  18. Moms can't quit.
  19. When there are ten buyers are three puppies, every dog is the pick of the litter.
  20. Jumping out the window will make you either an ass or a hero.
  21. You have the right to be there.
  22. You've got to bully a bully.
  23. Never be ashamed of who you are.
  24. The joy is in the getting there.

Part 2:
  1. Trust your gut.
  2. You can't fake passion.
  3. Dress the part.
  4. Do your homework.
  5. Fancy talk don't work.
  6. Pushy people deliver.
  7. You gotta have a gimmick.
  8. Everybody wants what everybody wants.
  9. Step apart from the crowd.
  10. Expand before you're ready.
  11. Be willing to flop.
  12. Shoot the dogs early.
  13. Fun is good business.
  14. Pick good people.

- 'sales' shows up in the book 155 times.

"Mr. Campagna," I asked, "if Mr. Cramer rents all your properties, why are there so many apartments vacant in our building?" He didn't seem to have an answer, so I suggested he give me just one of those apartments to rent. Not wanting to appear too pushy, I told him to give me the one Mr. Cramer liked the least.

Apartment 3C was next door to the superintendent's and had been vacant for a very long time. It had a narrow galley kitchen and a long, straight living room, with no hope of ever having a den. The apartment faced the back and never saw the light of day. Mr. Campagna's building at 86th Street and First Avenue was in the wrong location. It was just one block too east and one block too west, and the Gristedes grocery store across the street had tons of garbage stacked outside.

I arranged to meet my customers two blocks away on tony East End Avenue so I could begin each showing by admiring the wonderful prewar buildings that lined the street. "We're walking toward Fifth Avenue", I'd declare as we crossed First Avenue on East 86th Street.  I'd gesture toward the Gristedes store "so conveniently located right across the street", and then whirl us through the revolving doors into Mr. O'Rourke's meticulously kept lobby. There I'd find Mr. O'Rourke (my new best salesman) proudly standing next to the mailboxes, and I'd introduce him to our prospective tenants.

He'd turn on his Irish charm and proudly take them on a tour of his spotless back service areas and stairwells. I'd thank Mr. O'Rourke and ride my customers up in the elevator, finishing my pitch with "The owner is so proud of this building that he moved his own family in!"

Once my customers saw all the good things Mr. Campagna's building had to offer, they were writing their checks before I even turned the keys of apartment 3C, apartment 7F, apartment 21A, and all the rest.

- She talks about the need to play to your strengths / differentiate yourself ("If you don't have big breasts, put ribbons in your pigtails!")
- She talks about the need for a killer instinct
- She mentions her best salespeople wearing really flashy / outlandish clothing
- I think she mentioned firing the bottom-performing salespeople every year?

Ross Perot on sales (from a biography of him):

Bill Gates on sales (from biographies of him):

Howard Schultz on sales (from 'Pour Your Heart Into It'):

Sam Wyly on sales (from '$1000 and an Idea'):

Here's a guy from explaining their sales strategy:

Q: How do you view content marketing as part of the marketing mix? Can you tell me more about what makes your content-strategy approach unique?
Because our space is so new, not a lot of people are searching Google for “predictive lead-scoring solution.” Therefore we’ve got to use content marketing to capture their attention and get them thinking about why they should prioritize this forward-thinking initiative. It is difficult to take someone from 0 to 60 in one session. You’ve got to nurture them along. We use targeted advertising and promoted content to attract the right audience. If we can get people to click through to our site, we can set a cookie and re-market to them using AdRoll. It’s very similar to an email-marketing journey, only we don’t need their email addresses. We’re able to reach them on third-party sites, expose them to our messages and content, and hopefully educate them toward conversion.

Advice from a sales guy who went to college for it (so he's really into it):

Here are some comments from salespeople I've worked with:

You can use Salesloft to quickly import people from LinkedIn to Salesforce

You can use Sidekick (part of Hubspot) to track emails, who is opening them, how many times they open it, autologging those emails in Salesforce

Being persistent about emails really works. List ways your target can look good to their boss.
- Most SDRs stop after 3 attempts
- It's an art deciding on how many days to wait before following up
- [The SDR I know] has a bunch of different templates for the first touch, second touch, etc. The templates cover different possible directions the conversation can go in.
- The level of formality in your emails depends on who you're talking to.

Rejections fall into buckets:
- timing
- competitive
You need to have quick responses ready for these objections / rejections.
- Usually people don't listen to your response.

- Emails should have a clear ask, be very short
- Initial email depends on the target's title

- [The SDR I know] was able to get a meeting after three unanswered emails by tweeting at the guy.

- Unusual approaches might include sending a gift, sending letters

- Referrals help
- Even if it's not a real referral it still helps

- When someone tells you off you try their boss / coworker

- People want to do their job better
- [An AE I know] once reached out to a guy at Four Seasons for a year and a half before the guy said, "You're one persistent son of a bitch" and gave him some times.

Sample schedule:
Day 1: Email, call and leave a VM if they don't answer
Day 2: Call, but don't leave a VM if they don't answer
Day 3: Call and leave a VM if they don't answer
Day 4: Email
Day 5: Nothing
Day 6: Nothing
Day 7: Email

- [The AE] said you can try calling multiple times but with your number one time and a blocked number the second time so they can't see it's you calling again.
- Another trick is to call every half-hour to get them to answer if they were expecting another call at that time.

- People want to buy; they don't want to be sold.
- [The AE] admitted even he gets immediately turned off if he feels like the other person is trying to sell him.

- LinkedIn's list of employees is usually very accurate, you can rely on it to let you know how big a company is (eg ruling out a company if there are too few employees, based on the count given by LinkedIn)

- Demand Gen is responsible for taking a big list of potential leads and giving a subset of that list to the sales team. So Demand Gen has a strong interest in being able to identify the best leads.

- [The SDR] said he'd revisit leads every 60 days. He said there was one company with 2 lost opps with a reason of "timing", and he said he'd go after them again after 60 days.

What They Don't Teach You at Harvard Business School - Ch 14. - For Entrepreneurs Only - p245

Several years ago a friend of mine started a very successful photo reproduction business, which he later began to franchise. One of his franchisees, whose background was in lithography and design, was in trouble. After meeting with him in an attempt to straighten out the problem, my friend told me, "Just because our product is twice the quality at half the cost of our competition, he didn't think he had to go out and sell it. When I pointed this out to him, he said, 'Oh, but I'm not a salesman!' ".

Allison (Dev's girlfriend)

About her:
- She was serious into tennis, the 12th best in the US, but wasn't able to make it pro.
- She wasn't allowed to do many fun things when she was growing up; she went to a tennis tournament every single weekend from age 8 to 18 (or something like that). 52 tournaments a year. She would travel by herself because her father would accompany her brothers (who were in a more prestigious league). She took a plane to Florida by herself at age 10. [This sounds very reminiscent of Branson and and Ted Turner(?) both being sent to boarding school and being forced to rely on themselves. Branson was given lots of challenges by his relatives when he was younger to teach self-reliance.]
- She became friends with the head of Amazon's Kindle division when she went to some Spain-related meetup. They now talk just about every week(?).
- She was the #1 salesperson at her company the first year she ever started to try to sell anything.
- Her job is to boost the number of prescriptions doctors write for the drugs her company makes [pretty scandalous if you ask me]
- She said she made her pharmaceutical company something like $16mm and was given a $40,000 bonus, which just pissed her off. She said she was making ~$100,000.
- She said she's going to do it one or two more years and then try to start her own thing.
- Dev suggested she was now making ~$175-200k.

Her advice:
- She said, "Don't start asking for favors immediately. Wait six months. Build up a friendship with the person first.". She gave an analogy with dating: "Imagine you walk up to someone randomly on the street and say, 'Hey, do you want to go on a date?' 'Uh, no...'." [I felt embarrassed because that wasn't intuitive to me, but it was extremely helpful to get a good salesperson's perspective.]
- She shows up once a week to drop off samples and chat up the doctor.
- She just looks around his office at stuff on his walls and uses it to come up with questions. If he's got a diploma from Oklahoma State, she'll ask about Oklahoma.
- She says if the doctor doesn't want to see her it's extremely difficult to get them to change their mind; she estimated she only got through to around 10% of them (or maybe that was when she was talking about when the secretary would try to block her? She could only get past the secretary 10% of the time?)
- She said you'll get 80% of your sales from 20% of your customers. So try to identify those customers and focus on them instead of chasing after the ones who aren't going to buy as much.
Most salespeople fail because they're afraid to ask, they're afraid to stand there in uncomfortable silence after they've made the ask.
She tries to get the doctor to promise to do something, anything, every time she visits. That way she can follow up the next week and say, "You said you'd do X...". Most people in the US have been trained since they were young to keep their word, so getting someone to promise to do something is a very powerful way to get them to do it.
- She said something I had just read in this book "How I Raised Myself from Failure to Success in Selling", which was along the lines of, "most people just don't make enough calls. You need to do a certain number of calls per day, and just assume that a certain percentage of them are going to lead to success. Just plow through them." (she said something along those lines. I don't remember her exact phrasing.)


Henry Ford on his approach to selling:

We were careful in the selection of our salesmen. At first there was great difficulty in getting good salesmen because the automobile trade was not supposed to be stable. It was supposed to be dealing in a luxury--in pleasure vehicles. We eventually appointed agents, selecting the very best men we could find, and then paying to them a salary larger than they could possibly earn in business for themselvesIn the beginning we had not paid much in the way of salaries. We were feeling our way, but when we knew what our way was, we adopted the policy of paying the very highest reward for service and then insisting upon getting the highest service. Among the requirements for an agent we laid down the following:

(1) A progressive, up-to-date man keenly alive to the possibilities of business.
(2) A suitable place of business clean and dignified in appearance.
(3) A stock of parts sufficient to make prompt replacements and keep in active service every Ford car in his territory.
(4) An adequately equipped repair shop which has in it the right machinery for every necessary repair and adjustment.
(5) Mechanics who are thoroughly familiar with the construction and operation of Ford cars.
(6) A comprehensive bookkeeping system and a follow-up sales system, so that it may be instantly apparent what is the financial status of the various departments of his business, the condition and size of his stock, the present owners of cars, and the future prospects.
(7) Absolute cleanliness throughout every department. There must be no unwashed windows, dusty furniture, dirty floors.
(8) A suitable display sign.
(9) The adoption of policies which will ensure absolutely square dealing and the highest character of business ethics.

And this is the general instruction that was issued:

A dealer or a salesman ought to have the name of every possible automobile buyer in his territory, including all those who have never given the matter a thought. He should then personally solicit by visitation if possible--by correspondence at the least--every man on that list and then making necessary memoranda, know the automobile situation as related to every resident so solicited. If your territory is too large to permit this, you have too much territory.

Source: My Life and Work by Henry Ford - ... s-men.html

Compensating Salespeople



  • 2011.03.01 - Inc - Jason Fried - How to Make Money in 6 Easy Steps
    • Like I said at the outset, it's all about practice. Whether you're playing drums or building a business, you're going to be pretty bad at something the first time you try it. The second time isn't much better. Over time, and after a lot of practice, you begin to get there.

      So here's a great way to practice making money: Buy and sell the same thing over and over on Craigslist or eBay. Seriously.

      Go buy something on Craigslist or eBay. Find something that's a bit of a commodity, so you know there's always plenty of supply and demand. An iPod is a good test. Buy it, and then immediately resell it. Then buy it again. Each time, try selling it for more than you paid for it. See how far you can push it. See how much profit you can make off 10 transactions.

      Start tweaking the headline. Then start fiddling with the product description. Vary the photographs. Take some pictures of the thing for sale; use other photos with other items, or people, in them. Shoot really high-quality shots, and also post crappy ones from your cell-phone camera. Try every variation you can think of.

      I love doing this, because there's no real risk involved. If you already have a business, you don't need to dream up a new product line or rock the boat with crazy experiments. If you don't have a business, it's a perfect way to work on your chops.

  • 2018.04.?? - LAHWF - Chatting with a Muslim
    • The Muslim guy says his dad owns and operates an ice-cream truck, and Andrew Hales replies by saying that before his YouTube channel he was selling Italian ice. It made me think that maybe his experience with selling Italian ice gave him the confidence with strangers to allow him to do his 'walk-up-to-strangers' videos. So selling those Italian ices could have been great sales / people-person experience.

Examples of people who got sales experience