In my own experience ... The best results I have seen
of humor at work, is in sales. Perhaps that is because for 16 years
of my working life (out of 24) I've been in sales/marketing/advertising!
I could give you personal examples, but I'd rather have you read about them in
For now, here are some of my favorite salesman jokes.
Each one shows at least one quality of a good salesman, or represents a difficulty/frustration
faced on the field. These are useful on
sales calls, or keeping cool when things look bleak. And if you lead the pack,
to motivate your team!
(Some of the examples show a salesman ripping off a
customer - that's not the good quality I'm trying to show in those
examples but the quick thinking :-)
The Insulted Salesman :
This young salesman after just 2 days at the job walks into the sales
managers office (Who has had over 25 years of selling experience,
starting from the bottom and gradually rising to manager) and says "Sir, I'd like to resign, I've
been insulted at the job."
The old man asks the young man to be seated and then adds "I have
no problem with the resignation, if you want to leave, sure you can
leave. But out of my personal curiosity, can I ask you a question before
Without waiting for an answer he carries on, "I've been selling
for over 25 years now. I've sold on phone. I've been door-to-door.
During all this time, I've been called names, my parents have been
called names, I was once even kicked down 2 flights of stairs, and yet
no one has yet been able to 'INSULT' me! How did anyone manage to insult
you in just two days?"
The Approach :
A young sales person peeped into the office of someone who looked
like a sales manager, muttered something then started walking away.
retreating a little he seemed to change his mind, seemed to head
back to the door, where after some hesitation, he started to back away
again. The Sales Manager, feeling sorry for the young man, and surprised
that he was so badly trained called him in.
"You're a salesman aren't you? What are you selling"
"Sir.... uh ... yes ... I'm a salesman. I'm sorry to bother you. I was selling insurance,
but I'm sure you don't want any. Sorry
to have wasted your time."
Feeling sorry for the young bungler the Sales Manager bought 2 policies
to give the young salesman some confidence and then started teaching him
about selling. He said ... "You should have different pre-planned approaches for different
kinds of ...."
"But I do, Sir, the one I just used is my planned approach for
Sales Managers. It always works. Thank You!"
Smart Fish :
A customer at Morris' Gourmet Grocery marveled at the proprietor's
quick wit and intelligence. "Tell me, Green, what makes you so smart?"
"I wouldn't share my secret with just anyone," Morris replies,
lowering his voice so the other shoppers won't hear. "But since
you're a good and faithful customer, I'll let you in on it. Fish heads.
You eat enough of them, you'll be positively brilliant."
"You sell them here?" the customer asks. "Only $4 apiece," says Morris.
The customer buys three. A week later, he's back in the store
complaining that the fish heads were disgusting and he isn't any
"You didn't eat enough, " says Morris. The customer goes home
with 20 more fish heads. Two weeks later, he's back and this time he's
"Hey, Morris," he says, "You're selling me fish heads for
$4 apiece when I just found out I can buy the whole fish for $2...You're
ripping me off!"
"You see?" says Morris. "You're smarter already."
Gary Tenuta, www.etoons4you.com
liked the above joke and turned it into a cartoon for us ...
The Simple Salesman:
A minister concluded that his church was getting into serious financial
troubles. Coincidentally, while checking the church storeroom, he
discovered several cartons of new bibles. So at his Sunday sermon, he
asked for three volunteers from the
congregation who would be willing to sell the bibles door-to-door for $10
each to raise the desperately needed money for the church.
Peter, Paul and Louie all raised their hands to volunteer for the task.
The reverend knew that Peter and Paul earned their living as salesmen and
were likely capable of selling some bibles but he had serious doubts about
Louie. Louie was just a little local farmer, who had always tended to keep
to himself because he was embarrassed by his speech impediment. Poor
little Louis stuttered very badly..
But, not wanting to discourage poor Louis, the reverend decided to let him
try anyway. He sent the three of them away with the back seat of their
cars stacked with bibles and asked them to report the results of their
door-to-door selling efforts the following Sunday which they did.
Eager to find out how successful they were, the reverend immediately asked
each of them how they made out selling the bibles.
Proudly handing the reverend an envelope, Peter replied, "Father,
using my sales prowess, I was able to sell 20 bibles, and here's the 200
dollars I collected on behalf of the church."
Paul, smiling said, "Reverend, I am a professional salesman and was
give the church the benefit of my sales expertise. Last week I sold 28
bibles on behalf of the church, and here's 280 dollars I collected."
Louie silently offered the reverend a large envelope. The reverend opened
it and counted the contents..
"What is this?" the reverend exclaimed. "Louie, there's
3200 dollars in here! Are you suggesting that you sold 320 bibles for the
church, door to door, in just one week?"
Louie just nodded.
"That's impossible!" both Peter and Paul said in unison.
"We are professional salesmen, yet you claim to have sold 10 times as
many bibles as we could."
Curiously the reverend added "I think you'd better explain how you
managed to do accomplish this, Louie."
Louie shrugged. "I-I-I- re-re-really do-do-don't kn-kn-know
"f-f-f-for sh-sh-sh-sure," he stammered.
Impatiently, Peter interrupted. "For crying out loud, Louie, just
tell us what you said to them when they answered the door!"
"A-a-a-all I-I-I s-s-said wa-wa-was," Louis replied,
"W-w-w-w-would y-y-y-you l-l-l-l-l-like t-t-to b-b-b-buy
th-th-th-this b-b-b-b-bible f-f-for t-t-ten b-b-b-bucks ---o-o-o-or---
wo-wo-would yo-you j-j-j-justl-like m-m-me t-t-to st-st-stand h-h-here and
Sign of The Times:
Ali and Mohamed are panhandling on the Toronto subway.
Ali drives a Mercedes, lives in a mortgage free house and has a lot of money to spend. Mohamed, on the other hand, only brings in 2 to 3 dollars a day.
Mohamed asks Ali how he can take home a suitcase full of $10.00 bills everyday.
Ali says, "Look at your sign. It say 'I have no work, a wife and 6 kids to support'."
Mohamed then looks at Ali's sign. It reads 'I only need another $10.00 to move back to my country'.
Eric G. Blumthal of Count5 enjoyed this page and allowed us the use of the business cartoons that they used for a brand awareness campaign.
I've chosen two of their cartoons. The first shows why so many salesmen today are pests. The second explains how they probably got so.
If you'd like to see all of Eric's cartoons www.count5.com/salescartoons.asp