How Has Sales Management Evolved in 80 Years?

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Sales management today has many nice-sounding methods and systems that create an illusion that sales management would have developed by leaps and bounds in recent years and decades. But it ain’t necessarily so. Instead, a lot of sales management methods that we consider modern are in fact close to a 100 years old.

This Chevrolet car dealer training and motivational film from 1941 provides very good evidence to that effect. For instance it shows that 1-to-1 coaching your sales team has been standard practice of good sales managers for a very long time.

You want more evidence? Here’s still an older educational film (silent movie) also from Chevrolet using drama to present the sales process model called “7 Point Prospect System” from 1927 – that’s more than 80 years ago!

The topic of the film is a sales process system developed by Chevrolet for its car dealerships that is not really that different from the present-day sales force automation tools. If you do not take into account the fact that at that time computers had yet to be invented, nothing very revolutionary has happened in the last 80 years in this field.

Sellers were trained and coached and sales was measured and managed pretty much the same way as today already 80 years ago (at least in some companies). The sad thing is that a lot of companies still don’t know how to do it properly.

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