Rob The Salesman


My Friend Rob tells great stories, here’s one …

Rob worked as young man in a general store in a small town, looking after the white goods department. He loves people, people love him so he spent time talking, asking them questions, being friendly and helping them find what they were looking for. People liked Rob, liked the store and bought lots of white stuff. Without trying to Rob helped the store sell loads of white goods and helped lot of folks buy just the white goods that best suited their needs.

The store manager thought Rob was so good that could he could be a pro and sent him of a sales course.  Rob came back from professional sales training and worked hard – really tried to sell stuff. People didn’t want to hear, didn’t want to buy what he was selling.

Rob decided sales wasn’t for him, left town and moved on.

Years later Rob found himself in a community support worker role – volunteering, spending time with people, helping them out with this and that, helping them find the things that best suited them. Rob loved spending time with people and they loved having him around – he always made their day brighter, more interesting – they always knew who to turn to for a little help. He was so good at it that his manager thought he could go pro – and sent him on a course to get professional skills as a community worker .

Rob completed the course and came back “trained”: a “professional”. Because he’s like that he tried hard to put into practise what he had learned . People didn’t respond to him the same way, didn’t warm to him the same way, started to stay away from him – they didn’t like it.

Rob didn’t like it, either: one day he asked the folks who he worked with: “what happened?”

“We used to love you when you were just yourself” – now you’re just like the rest: trying to sell us something – and we don’t want to buy.”

Rob decided sales wasn’t for him and moved on.

This is a real story and Rob is a real person, but Rob is not his real name.

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1 Response to Rob The Salesman

  1. bmacd1 says:

    I am employed (lucky for me) as a professional of sorts I guess, but whatever fulfillment and progress I experience at work is usually derived from the effects of genuine human interaction. Thanks for posting this story. It was a good reminder to never stray to far from a sense of shared experience.

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