I read your Salary Survey in last week&'s issue of The Grocer with great interest (May 20, p32).
Based on personal experience, I have found the recruitment industry for sales positions to be systematic and blinkered in its approach.
The most disgusting way this manifests itself is in the form of ageism.
I can identify at least 20 sales professionals, with whom I have worked in my 20 years of selling, who are exceptional in carrying out their job role, but have experienced this ridiculous prejudice.
I bet that if you asked recruitment consultants how many of the people on their books aged over 35 were unemployed, it would be a disproportionate amount.
I am not against the employment of younger people.
But please let us dispense with this crazy idea that an older person is unable to work as hard as someone younger. The person under the age of 35 years is not the only one with brains, ideas, knowledge, personality and character.
Businesses that view young minds as the only ones able to maintain business growth are driving business plans based on short-term goals and not medium to long-term development.
The most positive quality possessed by the mature and elder statesman in sales is the one that people often seem to see as a negative, rather than a positive: experience.
High fliers are just as likely to be mature salesman as they are young. How often do you see the experienced salesman left to mop up after unrealistic promises made by a young salesman eager to impress have not been met?
Such eagerness is a wonderful asset to have, but can be costly to a business when not managed or controlled properly.
Please, let us get to a stage in business where age is not a prerequisite to defining a job. And let us remember that experience matters and should be seen by businesses as a valuable asset.