I could probably say that I started in sales when I was 11. My father worked in a printing company and he used to bring home the off cuts of the books they printed, they served as small note books.
When one day I brought a couple to school, my classmates asked for one, so I started selling them. I was soon taking orders and was making 15 to 20 pence a week! You could buy a bar of chocolate or bag of crisps for that and still have change.
After eventually getting into sales, I got lucky and got a job with a company that taught me virtually everything I know. I worked in the IT and leasing industries combining the two in my last 2 roles.
I was top salesman pretty much everywhere I went. There were some tough companies where I saw sales people quickly come and go. I learned that whilst skill and talent were key to being top; tenacity, persistence and hard work weren’t far behind.
Sales isn’t about the ‘gift of the gab’, it’s both a science and an art. And salespeople fail because they don’t take it seriously and they don’t do the job.