Would You Do Business With This Man?

Sales force dot com. They had a chance to break the mould, yet are they simply same old same old?

I was privy to a big pitch they delivered recently. Their area head honcho revelled in his spiel. One question came from the floor that each attendee seemed to remember above all others. Is it perhaps a lesson in how not to approach such matters?

What are your key values?

It’s a bit of a naff question, I grant you. If you’re truly interested you should be able to work them out for yourself. And that point should be known to the answerer. In many ways, the last thing you do is trot out a list of meaningless buzzword-laden ethically compliant platitudes.

But wait. That’s exactly what happened.

Trust and Integrity were cited as core drivers.

The boss felt compelled to illustrate by way of example. I can hardly believe it myself, but this is the story he allegedly told.

There was this salesguy. The world’s best ever. He’d even come in and close uncloseable deals. A complete genius seller. It was a delight when he came to work in said region. Then one day, it was discovered that on expenses he’d taken several ‘clients’ to a lapdancing bar. Hey ho. It was a grind, but as much as everyone loved the guy, and as damaging as it would be to future sales, he had to be let go.

Remarkable.

Are you better prepared for the ‘values’ discussion?

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