Over at the BCC Bob has posted about a humorous run-in he had with a home security salesman. This doesn’t surprise me as all the home security and pest control salesmen of the world hail from Provo, Utah. What is it about door-to-door and pyramid selling schemes that attracts the LDS populace? I’ll tell you: the sexy combo of polo shirt and khakis.
I must confess, I sold pest control for a summer and a half. Eclipse Marketing selling for Orkin Pest Control. My first summer (’99) was in Phoenix and my second (’00) was in Spokane, Washington.
Did I make good money? Sure.
Did I make good friends? Yes.
Did I learn a lot? Yes.
So why did I hate it so much? Because I didn’t really believe in the product, I hated knowing how much BS salesmen shovel, it was too dang hot, and I hated bothering people at their homes (I also hated tracting. Just because I’m selling the Gospel doesn’t mean I enjoyed the method of finding people).
What did I learn? The subtleties of selling. That Phoenix is no place to spend a summer. That gift incentives really do work as a form of motivation (even thought they are stupid). That when a salesman tells you his truck is going to be in the area (so is willing to give you a discount) that he’s full of crap. And most importantly, that it’s much more important to do what you like to do and make a little bit of money than do what you loath to make a little bit more than a little bit of money.
Is anyone else out there willing to confess their lost summers to sales? How was your experience? What did you learn?