So yesterday, I posted a blurb about how salespeople perceive procurement professionals as liars. I bet that many procurement people will contend that many salespeople are liars, too. In my procurement career, I can’t count how many times I was told that a product will ship the next day, but didn’t; that the price was all-inclusive when it wasn’t; and that a problem was corrected when it persisted.

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That being said, I’d rather dedicate this post to something positive. That positive thing being my perception of how, in general, salespeople are superior to procurement professionals in one particular area and how procurement professionals can regard salespeople as models for their own self-improvement.

What is that area?


In my line of work, I get a lot of calls from both salespeople who want to sell their product or service to us and procurement professionals who want to purchase our training. It takes me less than two seconds of answering a call to know whether I am talking to a salesperson or a procurement professional.

What are the differences?

In general, the salesperson will have a very professional sounding vocal delivery. They will articulate their first two sentences without a pause, an “um,” or any apparent uncertainty about what they want to say.

In general, the procurement professionals will sound quite informal. Their first two sentences will be littered with pauses, “ums,” and a seemingly unclear focus on what they want to ask.

Now, I know I’m running the risk here of offending someone. But I make this observation because I’ve spent my career on the procurement side and I feel that my own communication is something that could be improved.

When I am conducting a webinar, I often feel like kicking myself when I don’t articulate something crisply. And I feel jealous of those salespeople that sound like professional voiceover artists or radio DJ’s that call me.

So, when you consider how you feel about salespeople, don’t just focus on the negative. Focus on the skills that they have that you could emulate for your own self-improvement.

Then, maybe…um…you could…well, if you can focus on speaking professionally…you might easily be able to adjust your style to be a more professionator, I mean, professional communicator.

Have a good weekend!

To Your Career,
Charles Dominick, SPSM
President & Chief Procurement Officer
Next Level Purchasing, Inc.
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Charles Dominick, SPSM, SPSM2, SPSM3

Charles Dominick, SPSM, SPSM2, SPSM3 is an internationally-recognized business expert, legendary procurement thought leader, award-winning entrepreneur, and provocative blogger. Charles founded the Next Level Purchasing Association in 2000, oversaw its incredible growth, and successfully led the organization to its acquisition by the Certitrek Group in 2016. He continues to blog and provide advisory services for the NLPA on a part-time basis as he incubates his upcoming business innovations. Charles is also the co-author of the wildly popular, groundbreaking book, "The Procurement Game Plan: Winning Strategies & Techniques For Supply Management Professionals."

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