John Y’s Musings from the Middle: Sales Techniques

Sales techniques: connecting with the customer.

It is important, sales people are taught, to find ways to identify with the customer to help build rapport.

Last night I had an experience with a sales clerk who tried this technique on me–but it didn’t have quite the intended effect.

I was shopping for a plain blue dress shirt. The sales rep was a heavy roundish fellow who was very affable and extremely helpful.

We found my size but I learned there were three different tailoring styles within my size.

The sales clerk explained, “This shirt has a taper on it and is for men who, you know, still have the wide shoulders and narrow waist (he used his hands to illustrate a small waist). And the shirt you are holding is for guys who, well, who are just really skinny and always will be and have narrow shoulders (he made hand gesture for narrow shoulders). These guys will never have much meat on them.”

jyb_musingsHe then reached over and grabbed a third blue dress shirt and proceeded, “And then this shirt is for guys like you and me.”

Hmmmm. I guess we sorta connected with that observation but I didn’t care for it personally. Just wasn’t expecting it and almost asked for the tapered shirt because I’m on this new diet.

But didn’t.

I bought the shirt. And the hell of it is that the shirt fits perfectly.



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