There is a gravitational pull in sales to dehumanize people. From my first cold call I encountered this problem.
As some of you know, I've been working as an insurance broker since late February. This isn't necessarily the job I wanted, but it is what I could do while I look for something better. It has been an amazing learning experience... probably because it is so difficult.
One of the cherished lessons I've learned since taking this role has been the value of people. It is incredibly easy to dehumanize people as I'm making cold calls or canvasing businesses. The temptation is to esteem people based on their response to my sales pitch or esteem them based on the leads they provide me. But that is so wrong.
The problem starts with the gatekeeper. That person fills a role of impeding you from getting to the person you need to talk to. They are sniffing out the sales people and conveniently dumping them into voicemail. This can be incredibly frustrating. But that person is still an amazing human being.
If you do get through to a decision maker, most the time they will tell you they are not interested in what you are selling. Those are just the numbers. But did the value of that human being change once they gave me their "no"?
People are amazing. And as a Christian I believe they are created by God in His image. That doesn't just apply to the ones who give me business. It is the case with every person we work with.
The more I've embraced this idea -- that people reflect God's nature -- the more I've enjoyed the sales process. Doing 200 cold calls means I get the opportunity to interact with 200 people that God made. That is an amazing privilege.