We’ve all met them- the used car guy who refuses to tell you the price until you’re at the negotiating table. The telephone solicitor who calls promising free cruises during dinner- twice. The office jockey who bounces from job to job, promising whatever it takes to make the sale- and then running for the door with the commission check. Their internet fame is second only to Charlie and his finger biting. Scumbag salespeople are everywhere- here’s how to become one in 3 easy steps:
1. Think of customers as dollar signs with orifices.
This one is easy. When you’re given a customer to work with, think about how much money you can squeeze out of them in the shortest possible period of time. Remember, “no” means they want to take away your money- so be as unstable as possible to make them never want to disagree with you. Don’t worry about telling the truth- remember once you have the cash you get the commission and you don’t have to help them anymore. Customer satisfaction is something losers worry about, and you’re a
2. Co-workers are the enemy
From Mr. McCarthy in the C-Suite to your cube-mate Jeff, they’re all out to get you. The other salespeople want your accounts… and to see you fail. The engineers want you to stop making “shady” sales- whatever that means. Finance never wants to let your customers buy things- what does credit have to do with commission, anyway? Operations is just another word for forecasting, and that’s a waste of precious sales-time. Senior management is only there to play buzzword bingo and raise your quota. Forget em.
Use all the tricks in the bag to make all your coworkers to unknowingly work for you. Other salespeople owe you a favor, right? Put the pressure on the engineers and finance to get your deals through and get that commission. Let them deal with the customer’s complaints later. If operations can’t deliver on whatever you’ve promised- threaten to quit. That’ll teach em.
3. Perfect the scam
It’ll take some practice, but the most important trait you can have in your quest to becoming the scumbag salesperson is the perfect scam. Fear tactics, false testimonials, half-truths, and a good poker face are your friend. Assign blame wherever and whenever you can- as long as it doesn’t land at your feet.
Here are a few classics to emulate:
- Can’t agree on price? Negotiate verbally, put up a small fight and then give in to whatever the customer demands. Have someone else then present your original pricing in a confusing way in writing for a signature. Make yourself unavailable for the signing.
- Nothing closes a deal faster than the fear for the safety of one’s family or livelihood. Introduce subtle negativity to customers with interest in low-dollar items, and powerless warranties to customers going for the expensive. Anecdotal evidence from “other customers” who had a bad time goes a long way.
- “Forget” about details of the sale that you don’t like. Replace them with your own, preferred details instead- and when pressed on it, lie. Say things like “we already agreed,” and “I’ll have to start over to change…”
Using these three strategies, you’ll soon be on your way to successfully becoming a scumbag salesperson. Remember- business ethics are for the weak, customers are replaceable, and your co-workers are the enemy.