Detached Salesmen

The salesman chases leads and uses his cunning to convert them into sales. Because his social skills are unusual compared to workers, they are given fairly free reign and little scrutiny so long as they bring in sales. Since they work for a commission, they utilize this flexibility to shift costs — and are cognizant of where they can cheat.

When getting epoxy garage flooring, the salesman measured square footage and then reduced the recorded size by 25%, lowering the proposed cost. Laborers expecting the smaller garage would just have to work longer and have enough extra material on hand to complete the job. The salesman was only interested in getting his sale and the workers would not report the repeated shortages, but instead treat them as normal and prepare for them.

A salesman for a window company asked if I was in the military and offered a 15% military discount so he could close the deal. When I answered that I wasn’t, he said to tell him I was and he’d believe me. This let him get commission for the sale and the company just thought they were doing good by helping out someone contributing military service.

Both salesmen knew no one was likely to check their schemes and they would get a cut of money that otherwise would go to company owner from so much bloat. Left alone, the stated prices would be too high to regularly complete a sale. Their cheating was a complicated way to restore sensible pricing.

Greedy jackals work this way, as they are unconcerned with tying up the pieces and refuse responsibility for the whole, foisting costs upon others while they carve out space to work a system and take the sweet gains for themselves.

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