Your Financial Statement Proves It.

Selling has been around since civilization began. Bartering or trading stuff you didn't need for things you needed/wanted was the first form of selling. As time went on, selling became a matter of exchanging money for goods or services. In fact, the “oldest profession in the world” was quite probably the earliest example of an exchange of money for services rendered. The term “selling yourself” could have been born at that time!

At some point, some rather negative connotations surrounding the selling profession developed and still survive today. Expressions such as “just like a used car salesman” meant something shady was going on. “He could sell refrigerators to Eskimos” was one that perhaps referred to someone's unusually strong selling skills.

Selling is an important activity that sets the wheels of business & industry in motion. It takes all the investments in technology, production, and research & development and turns them into revenue. And revenue is the top line of any financial operating statement, which you could call the “scorecard” of business. As the first item on that statement, it must also be the most important item on the list. All the following items such as cost of goods, operating expenses, gross profits, and taxes follow revenue. Revenue is king, and selling causes revenue to happen.

It naturally follows that selling is the single most important activity in today's business world. After all, what good is technology if nobody can buy it? Why have a research division if all you're going to do is spend money? Who needs complex distribution systems if nobody is selling the goods flowing through it? Sure, all these things are important and necessary to the cause, but unless things are sold, the company will not take in money and the business will not survive.

In spite of the emergence of the Internet and online buying, the vast majority of selling & buying transactions take place between people. The person behind the counter at the fast-food restaurant is selling when he/she asks, “Would you like fries with that?” When you think about selling something really big and expensive – such as a multi-million dollar system in a factory – you're looking at teams of people doing the buying and selling, but it's still people doing business with people. It's still SELLING.

As the 21st century unfolds, the role of selling will continue to remain at the forefront of our ever-changing world of business. Styles and techniques will change with the times, but selling will continue to be the trigger that starts things moving – and keeps them moving ahead - in the world of business.