If you’re a sales professional and you’ve never seen these 10 movies, you’re missing out on some of the most important material you can learn from. You’ll see the game for what it is, and you’ll be inspired to go out and annihilate it in the process. Our is why you won’t find any movies about dancing used car salespeople on this list: they treat sales with the seriousness it deserves. MatthewChernov, I’m sorry.
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Get down to business. In reverse order, here are the best movie sequences from my top 10 critical sales maneuvers, plus links to free or really cheap services where you can stream them on demand.
10. The Big Short (2015)
One of Adam McKay’s underappreciated films about the 2008 mortgage crisis features a stunning clip from the film below. My admiration for Jared Vennett (Ryan Gosling) grows more every time I see this scenario. Think your product or service is too complicated? Sold against large financial industry investments, try to sell credit-default swaps and collateralized debt obligations (CDOs).
Comrades, welcom to sales. In motion, this scene is like poetry. The stage is set. Using Jenga as a visual representation. Zero-bulls**t selling (Gosling’s analysis of the conditions generating the impending catastrophe) paired with harmless-yet-effectivebulls**t (“That’s my Quant!”). The Big Short is a must-read for anyone interested in civics or sales.
9. The Pursuit of Happyness (2006)
If a guy walked in with no shirt on, and I hired him, what would you say??”[Pause]
That man must have been wearing some extremely beautiful pants,” said Chris.
Aside from The Pursuit of Happyness, all of the other films on my list aren’t quite as heartwarming. Every sales professional should be inspired by Chris Gardner’s character’s ability to employ comedy in the middle of hunger and desperation, as demonstrated by Will Smith’s character, Chris Gardner.
As a sales professional, you may find yourself in a situation where you are unable to close a deal. Afraid of losing my job. Fearing an insurmountable goal. You’re down to the wire. An amazing, powerful conviction in your abilities, coupled with unfailing looseness and good humour, is the pathos you need to radiate.
8. Jerry Maguire (1996)
Jerry Maguire, the movie with the greatest date night approval rating, features at least five or six scenes that every sales professional should see. It’s the movie’s storyline that I enjoy the most – the contrast between Maguire’s commitment to his clients and his fear of commitment to Renee Zellweger character. Maguire is a successful sports agent because he cares so much about his clients’ accomplishments, their needs, and their financial well-being.
“Pretend that every single person you meet has a sign around his or her neck that says, ‘Make me feel important.'” Mary Kay Ash’s famous sales remark. “You’ll not only excel in sales, but you’ll succeed in every aspect of your life.” This film is a great example of that. Make it easier for your sales team to succeed. As a sales professional, Jerry Maguire should be added to your must-see list.
7. Tommy Boy (1995)
No, I don’t think I need to explain Tommy Boy’s joyous wisdom to you. This film has been viewed and adored by everyone over the age of 30 to my knowledge. If you’re a kid, here’s a simple elevator pitch for you. This is the funniest sales film of all time. Period.
Learn how Chris Farley responds to criticism (see: above). In front of a potential client, Chris Farley completely loses his s*it. On the road, Chris Farley annoys his coworker (David Spade). It’s all hilarious. You may either put your head in a butcher’s a** or just believe me when I say it.
6. Wall Street (1987)
It’s nearly impossible to improve on this for the purist. This movie loses a few points for two reasons: first, it’s too obvious, and second, it’s not as rewatchable as the top five films on this list. As a side note, I’d like to draw your attention to the following image:
“Greed is good” is a myth. In terms of sales, Gordon Gekko’s monologue here is the best. When I started out, I worked in this field in 1969. Most of these Harvard MBAs are scumbags. Give me people who are hungry, smart, and don’t care about anything except money. You’ve got a few. Loss is inevitable. Even yet, you continue to struggle, and if you need a companion, acquire a dog. That way, mate, it’s trench warfare.” I think that’s where the action is. However, there are a dozen or so such scenes like this one that have been overlooked by the general populace. Make a return to the traditions of Wall Street.
5. The Wolf of Wall Street (2013)
The time Jordan Belfort has served in prison doesn’t matter. The film is devoted to the idea of sales in its purest form. Selling the idea of a better life. Selling a need. Product? Irrelevant. It doesn’t matter if you’re talking about penny stocks or pens.
The Wolf of Wall Street’s sheer rewatchability also makes it into my top five. This is the world’s shortest ever three-hour movie. DiCaprio’s outstanding portrayal portrays the salespeople at both their finest and worst moments in the movie. Even in the most serious of situations, it may be hilarious in the blink of an eye. Watch. Re-watch. And have a good time.
4. Boiler Room (2000)
The most underappreciated film in the world’s box office. To locate it on Hubspot, you will have to look elsewhere (though you will find something called Cedar Rapids). Probably because most film critics have no concept what it’s like to work in a real-life customer service center. Because of this lack of knowledge, they have no idea that Boiler Room is the most accurate depiction of a modern sales floor in movie.
Certainly, this is yet another film about an unethical business. That’s right, the Wolf of Wall Street’s fake sales organization is plagued by the same illnesses as the Wolf of Wall Street, such as overt misogyny and unscrupulous business methods. Take a step back and remove those from the situation. It’s the training scenes, the portrayal of friendship and competition, and the wealthy but ignorant young representatives. Those are the closest we’ve ever been to the truth up until this point. In addition, Boiler Room has been around for about two decades already. Do yourself a favor and learn how your day-to-day life as a sales professional is adapted in an inside sales setting.
3. There Will Be Blood (2007)
Gordon Gekko’s milkshake would be Daniel Plainview’s beverage of choice. Plainview (Daniel Day-Lewis) is a rags-to-riches story about an oil tycoon who rises from a ditch-digging oil prospector to a morally conflicted kingpin.
Mr. Plainview’s innate salesmanship is captured in the above remarks. Face-to-face sales pitches are required. Touching one’s own humanity. H.W. and I operate together as a team. An answer to the question “why?” A loaf of bread should not be regarded as a luxury by any member of our society. A town full of people will let you drill on their land, acquire real estate, or buy software if you can persuade them to do so. Bring out the Daniel Plainview in your sales team, but without the cynicism. Then relax and enjoy your milkshake.
2. The Godfather (1972)
Before I became a salesperson, I was a huge fan of the film The Godfather. Among the best movies of all time for me. As a child, my family would watch this video every Christmas. The first time we saw it together after I joined the ranks of the sales profession, I’ll never forget it. After nine months in the software sales business, I was making six-figure sums of money from software sales. It was as though a switch had been turned on.
After watching the opening sequence of this film, I had a new perspective on my sales funnel. Amerigo Bonasera, the mortician depicted in the scenario above, approached the Godfather out of the blue with an urgent plea. While it’s true that I offered assistance rather than requested it, who was I to expect them to give up their time on the spur of the moment? “I see you sell [x].”] was a new aspect of my outreach strategy in which I located suitable prospects, and then contacted them with an offer of immediate value. After establishing trust, I was able to introduce you to someone who would be a fantastic fit for you. “[Prospect X], we’re just a few steps away from making this happen,” I began saying to my late-stage prospects. This is an offer you can’t refuse, so how do I make it?” No, I will not. Over a decade has passed since then. I’m still doing both to this day. When it comes to business, The Godfather is an excellent source of inspiration, regardless of whether you’re a mob boss or an enterprise sales agent.
1. Glengarry Glen Ross (1992)
Last month, I rewatched Glengarry Glen Ross after a three-year absence. It’s a wonderful movie for a sales pitch. It doesn’t age. That “Always be closing!” and “Coffee is for closers” cliche is just the beginning. Want to get rid of your list of the top 10 movies for salespeople that you’ve put together? Don’t include Glengarry Glen Ross in your top five films. Matthew Chernov and Hubspot, what were you doing?
As of this writing, Netflix is offering it for free. It’s time for sales people to watch this amazing picture and see six men who cover the full landscape of the industry with pitch-perfect melancholy, including Al Pacino, Kevin Spacey, Jack Lemmon, Ed Harris, Alan Arkin, and Alec Baldwin. Glengarry Glen Ross is your Citizen Kane if you’re in the business of selling.