Trust, Shmust! We Need a Sales Mensch!


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A shondah* that in 2011, people have to teach these skills to adults:

How to build relationships
How to be a trusted advisor
Three ways to build rapport
How to build trust in a sales relationship

But it’s no surprise. Being an adult simply reflects the passage of time, which has nothing to do with emotional maturity.

So who can create great sales outcomes without having to being told how? That, I can tell you in one word: a sales mensch! “Like who,” you ask! Like Dicky Fox! There’s a mensch! You should be as sincere and honest!

A sales mensch is more than an Experienced Professional. More than an Honest Salesperson. More than a Trusted Advisor, even. “You’re a mensch” is the highest accolade one person can give to another. To be a real Sales mensch requires nothing less than character, rectitude, dignity, and a sense of what is right and responsible.

When you are a sales mensch, you don’t need the oft-hyped rapport-trust-relationship stuff, because you’ve got that—and more. And you don’t pick up mensch-ness on Day 2 of a sales skills training program or from bullet-ized tips on a PowerPoint slide. Which explains why there aren’t more sales mensches.

Nevertheless, here’s what sets sales mensches apart from the Everyday Salesperson:

1. A sales mensch helps people who cannot ever return the favor.

2. A sales mensch always strives to do the right thing in the right way, and he or she never says, “Well, at least we’re not as bad as (fill in the blank)!”

3. A sales mensch helps people without regard for their station or status within a company or society.

4. A sales mensch recognizes that mensch isn’t a title that is awarded, rather a quality one always strives to maintain.

5. A sales mensch is humble, and recognizes the contributions and sacrifices that others have made toward his or her personal achievements.

6. A sales mensch‘s zeal is always tempered by recognition of context–that is, a sales mensch keenly understands that a prospect’s situation and world view right now has many competing priorities. A sales mensch shows empathy.

The best quote on menschness I’ve seen comes from Alan Gregerman on CustomerThink: “We win in business and in life when we respect the value of customers and prospects. And when we seek to be worthy of the trust they put in us.”

That’s a sales mensch! What’s not to like?

* Shondah: yiddish– shame

Republished with author's permission from original post.


  1. Well put. Books and slides are not well suited to creating character. It seems the building of strong, enduring character is best left to real life experience. When I am wise enough to reflect on my own past, I see how the trials and pressure of life are where my best qualities have been forged.

    We will all face challenges. How we survive them and moreover, how we grow as a result is what really builds noble character in us, much more so than academics. Right? Of course right. 😛

    Don F Perkins


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