Salesdouche game for a bored day

Today was one of those little icky days where, after the fun and mildly arty process of designing a set of boards, the next step was to spend all day in Excel sourcing parts and getting all their prices filled in (and ripping up parts of the design where the part had gone non-stock, etc.). As a fitting punctuation to this experience, I had a meeting with a Toshiba(?) sales rep today hyping a line of 16-bit microcontrollers. (How did I get involved in such a meeting? Note to self, stop agreeing to offers for free devkits :P)

Anyway, one of those better-known salesdouche academy tricks is to match the mark’s body language–it’s supposed to instill comfort and trust or some such, or more to the point, increase the odds someone will buy your stuff: if the mark leans in, the salesdouche leans in; if the mark crosses his legs a certain direction, the salesdouche should follow suit within a minute or two. What I like to do is exhibit increasingly bizarre body language and see how far I can get the salesdouche to track it.

For example, I like to start small, with an “interested” forward lean to get him hooked. Once he’s tracking, I may segue into the Thinker pose or an ever-pensive elbow rub. Once the spiel is well underway and the SD is douching it up at full lather, when he mentions something I don’t like, I recoil a bit and hit him up with the jazz hands to see if he jazzes back.

me: “Ooh. So you mainly work with __JAZZ HANDS__ high-volume customers?”
SD: “Oh _JAZZ HANDS_ nono! We’re totally receptive to smaller orders…” (score!)

I like to follow up with some twitchy elbow and a little feet-on-table action. By the end of the meeting, I might well be in full stripper-table-lay, knees on chair, belly and elbows on table, under the auspices of interestedly poring over a brochure they carelessly left of Their Side of the table. I’m small, so I can get away with this. So far, I haven’t succeeded in getting a salesdouche into full sprawl on our conference table, but that day will come.


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