“The Death of the Salesman – has been greatly exaggerated”, this is what Economist blog Schumpeter said in the Oct 14, 2011 issue.  The blog pointed-out that contrary to all the negative predictions that the dot.com boom would make sales people obsolete – this has simply not been the case. It points out, that Management guru Peter Drucker – barely wrote anything about selling in fact he said that “the aim of marketing was to make selling superfluous”!

That reminds me of the time when I was doing my MBA and I asked the Dean of the Faculty if there was anything on selling in the program. He dismissively replied, that if I’d wanted a course in selling – then I should have taken a Dale Carnegie course!

Billions of dollars are being spent on social media and most companies are scrambling to make sense of their “new toy” from an economic point of view.

Companies are spending a lot of money on social media – without any clear ROI or evidence of tangible results. I’m not trying to be dismissive of social media – merely put it in some perspective.

For instance, what might surprise you to know is that such iconic social media savvy companies like Google and Apple, whose products supposedly “sell themselves” are investing heavily in sales people and their development.

Go to an Apple retail store and you can experience first-hand the benefits of the investment Apple has made in training their sales people. They do a great job of keeping things simple and asking great questions to help you figure-out what you need.

The role of Sales is too often viewed as the “Cinderella” of the elements that make-up the marketing mix – disrespected, under-appreciated and sometimes even marginalized by management as a “ necessary evil”!

In this blog series – I’m not going to debate the merits of investing in sales people, let’s assume you’ve already committed to that, but let’s debate whether or not you should invest in sales training and how to maximize your return on investment.

Next we will look at:  Investing in Sales Training Series #2:  When NOT to Invest in Sales Training