Written By Jeffrey Gitomer

KING OF SALES, The author of seventeen best-selling books including The Sales Bible, The Little Red Book of Selling, and The Little Gold Book of Yes! Attitude. His live coaching program, Sales Mastery, is available at

The Authentic Salesperson. Is that you?

You probably think you are, and you’re probably wrong. So wrong in fact, that by the time you’re finished reading this, the pain will be so intense, that you may actually take some action to make yourself more authentic.

What is authentic? Something EVERY salesperson strives to be. The real question is: How authentic are you? How close to “10” are you on the authenticity scale in each of these 10.5 categories:

1. Long term relationships with customers —What percentage of your customers have been with you for more than 5years? They are the measure of your authenticity — and will often tell others about it.

2. Excellent market exposure and position —You are positioned in a way that others in your industry (especially your customers and prospects) see you, and see the value in what you do, what you represent, and how you help others.

3. Great reputation in your industry —What do people in your industry say about you behind your back? How are you regarded?

4. High respect of customers, co-workers, and community —How does your close-in network regard you? What is your reputation among them?

5. Being friendly, likeable and sincere in helping others. The more you help others, the more your authenticity grows. No limits.

6. Reliable as a person. Do what you say you will do. Be there when you say you will be there. Be someone that others can count on. Be there when you are needed.

7. Reliable as a resource. Have knowledge. Have wisdom. Have answers. Have connections and an informal network of influential people. Be in the know — and be willing to share of it.

8. Perceived value provider. Who benefits from your actions? Only you? Do you write? Anyone save what you write? Send in and ask for a copy of what you wrote?

9. Personally branded. What is your reputation? Who knows you? What are others saying about you? What do people think when they see you name? What do you want them to think?

10. Published and perceived as an authority. Got articles? Got book? If not, you’re missing a big piece (maybe THE piece) of authenticity.

10.5 You get unsolicited referrals on a regular basis. The authentic salesperson gets a report card every day. Not your paycheck, not your referrals — it’s your UNSOLICITED referrals.

Rate yourself 1-10 in each of the 10.5 categories. High score is 110. How’d you do?

Jeffrey Gitomer, author of The Sales Bible, and The Little Red Book of Selling. President of Charlotte-based Buy Gitomer, he gives seminars, runs annual sales meetings, and conducts internet training programs on selling and customer service at He can be reached at 704/333-1112 or e-mail

c 2005 All Rights Reserved– Don’t even think about reproducing this document without written permission from Jeffrey H. Gitomer and Buy Gitomer