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Salespeople get a bad rep. Some of it might be deserved, but most of it comes from the unfair stereotypes of sleazy, fast-talking sales reps from movies and pop culture. Most salespeople are honest, hard-working folks making a living and providing for their families.

Many people go into sales so they can make a lot of money (which Spiro, our AI-Powered CRM can help you with by keeping you focused on your best deals), but they are usually surprised by how badly much of the general public treats salespeople.

Here are some good reasons why you should be nicer to salespeople:

1. They’re probably honest

There is a small segment of salespeople who will lie and cheat to get their way. But the same can be said of any profession and the overwhelming majority of salespeople are honest and ethical, so your salesperson is most likely telling you the truth.

2. You’ll get a better deal

Being rude or angry with a salesperson doesn’t make any sense, especially if you’re trying to get a better deal. You catch more flies with honey than vinegar, and many salespeople will refuse to go out of their way to help you get a better deal if you try to bully them into it. Trust me, being nice will get you everywhere with salespeople, especially since they’re not used to it.

3. If you don’t buy, they’re working for free

The overwhelming majority of sales is spent talking to people who won’t be doing business. And a significant number of salespeople don’t get a base pay at all, so when a salesperson is working with you, they’re doing it for free unless you sign on the dotted line. So if you don’t end up buying, the salesperson has essentially wasted their time with you, so be nice.

4. They’re keeping you employed

People tend to forget just how important salespeople are to the economy. There’s a famous saying: “Nothing happens until someone sells something.” It couldn’t be any more true. Salespeople are the front line of nearly every single business in the world, and they’re probably the ones bringing money into your company and making sure you keep getting a paycheck.

5. They’re probably very stressed out

Sales is one of the most stressful jobs out there. Not only do salespeople deal with the normal stresses of any job, but they also deal with looming sales quotas, pressure from management, prospecting for new business, handling issues for existing customers, and rudeness and distrust from the general public. Can we at least cross that last one off the list?

6. They are your family, friends, and neighbors

You should be nicer to salespeople because there are so many of them out there. Nearly 13 percent of the ENTIRE United States workforce is in sales, which means that salespeople are all around you, whether you like it or not. Your friends, family, and members of your community are probably full of salespeople, so treat them as you would everyone else.

7. Their goal is to make you happy

The best salespeople know that their only goal is to help you get what you want. Boiled down to its most basic form, that is exactly what sales is: helping people. So with that in mind, why wouldn’t you want to be nicer to someone who is there to help you? Sure, they’re doing it to make a living, but so isn’t your waiter, your lawyer, and your accountant. There’s no reason to treat salespeople any differently, especially since they’re expecting you to.

Editor’s Note: This blog was originally published in April 2016 and has been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.

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About the Author Adam Honig

Adam is the co-founder and CEO of Spiro Technologies. He is a natural sales leader with a mission to help salespeople make more money using artificial intelligence — or any sort of intelligence for that matter. Adam has been a founder of four companies which resulted in two triumphant IPOs and two legendary mergers. He is best known for speaking at various conferences including Dreamforce, for pioneering the ‘No Jerks’ hiring model, and for flying his drone while traveling the world.


  • Gary h Brown says:

    Another reason to be nice to a sales person is for the customer to be able to ask about what other customers have done successfully with the product. Two people can buy the same product and get different results, depending on how the product is used and promoted. I always wanted to know from my sales rep. how another of their customers got the best results. Good relations between customer and sales person will you get you great results.

  • Salespeople remember their clients as prospects just as well as clients and prospects remember them. To be remembered in a positive way, make a sales person feel respected, even if you cannot buy or have a need for what they are offering. I always try to offer them a referral or suggest someone that may need their products or services. At the least, I make a new connection, a new referral partner or even a good friend. That in itself is priceless and lasts forever.

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