Hilarious Selling Blunder


Scott was selling insurance “farm to farm” and had never driven a nice car. In fact, he’d never even owned a new car.

Things were going well, so the rep decided to reward himself.

Scott shopped for vehicles and because his territory was large and gas mileage was a factor, his choice was a brand new, bright red Toyota.

This was all happening in the 1990s and rural America was not as conservative as, say, the seventies. So it wasn’t really risky to be seen by farmer prospects in a Japanese car. The country was well beyond the days when they only bought American.

So Scott’s precious selling partner was washed regularly, kept up, and treasured like the valuable selling tool it was.

Then the day arrived when his brand new baby was forever marked by the life on the farm.

The salesman was stalled on a “think about it” during a call and walked out of that farmer’s home. The farm owner courteously led the rep to the front door and saw it all before the young salesman did. “It” was described by the prospect’s slow, deep drawl in a comment that challenged his car-buying decision. “That’s what you get for buying a foreign car.”

Scott had no response. He couldn’t believe what he was looking at.

The man’s biggest Billy goat had climbed on the roof of his new Toyota and completely caved it in.

“Here, git down here, you.” The farmer spoke to his animal and its hooves scratched and dented the hood as it hopped its way to the ground.

“You got insurance for that, don’t you?” He grinned at his witty joke.

In stunned silence Scott pried open the door and climbed in. The windshield was cracked and seemed ready to pop out. The new, low roof left him about six inches to see above his steering wheel.

The door kind of closed and the salesman drove home, scrunched over – ending his day early. He called his insurance company and was asked, “is this a joke?” before Scott’s rep realized that this was going to be his favorite, his most unusual claim of the year. Scott had heard the saying that selling is like going out to battle every day. He just never dreamed that his transportation could end up a casualty of war.

SalesAutopsy_cF.jpg (from Sales Autopsy, now available at www.barnesandnoble.com/salesautopsy)

POSTMORTEM: Scott now expects the unexpected. How well do you handle adversity in your life (selling or personal)? So whatever “it” is that makes things difficult for you, get over it. Life is a long string of memorable moments – too many tough, too few good – just shake your head, grin and move on. Don’t let those rough times get your goat.

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