Software Nerd

Monday, June 26, 2006

The pro and con of commission-based Salespeople

There was a time when Best Buy salespeople did not work on commissions, while Circuit City's folk did. I always found the City-City salespeople pretty knowledgable about the product, while the Best Buy ones would read back the text on the label -- as if I had not done that myself, before asking for their help.

I had a similar experience while shopping for new mobile phone services recently, I went to a Best Buy store and the salesgirl seemed to be "kinda" doing her job, but was not too well-informed and not too enthusiastic. So, I walked over to a Sprint store where a commissioned salesperson gave me a whole lot of detail, did not try to up-sell me products that I did not want, and added a few sweeteners to the deal. I ended up switching service to Sprint. Funnily enough, I also ended up enjoying the experience.

The down-side with commissioned sales-folk is that they can be pushy: they often get extra commissions for selling you something you do not want or need. Often, they're also compensated for making you pay more for the same service. I believe that most of this downside is caused by poor management who have a "pull a fast one" attitude.



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