I nearly always find that good sales people underestimate their worth, which is surprising, given the nature of their job. The main two businesses I’ve been involved with over the past 20 years were successes because they had the best long-term salesmen in the market, without question. However, it was hard to pay them what they were worth, because they never seemed to think they were worth it!
But then again, I’ve never understood the sales world. I’ve seen sales directors push away their best team members because they felt threatened by them; I’ve seen employers lose salesmen generating hundreds of thousands of pounds’ profit a year, over issues worth pennies; and I’ve constantly seen firms mistakenly opt for cheap, inexperienced sales staff, when better-quality ones would produce a far higher return on investment.
Like any specialist member of staff, a top salesman needs protecting from mundane jobs, and focusing on what he’s good at. Yet perhaps more than any other area of business, sales gets bogged down in low-value work – indeed, they almost welcome it, as All customer contact must go through me on the Kahle Way B2B Sales Blog explains. It’s a really good article.