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Global Entrepreneurship Week Fails to Mention Entrepreneurs Are Salespeople


Global Entrepreneurship Week encourages people around the world to consider whether they have the aptitude to become an entrepreneur, which organizers define as “explor[ing] their potential to become self-starters and innovators.”

One important trait that many people think Global Entrepreneurship Week overlooked is the importance of salesmanship.

A recent Google search found more than a dozen lists of entrepreneurial traits, including self-motivated, competitive, leadership qualities, self-promoter and many more—most of them focused on the role of the individual as executive.

“But none of them sound like ‘salesperson’ and a whole lot of self-starters and innovators are desperately afraid of that S-word,” said Dr. Barbara Weaver Smith, founder of The Whale Hunters, a company that helps small companies grow by selling bigger deals to bigger customers.  “They fall in love with what they could build or what they can do, and if they think about selling at all, they figure eventually they’ll hire someone to do that. But in fact, many entrepreneurs will need an administrative assistant, a financial manager, an operations executive or a customer service representative long before they can afford a salesperson. The owner will be the seller.”

Smith, co-author of “Whale Hunting: How to Land Big Sales and Transform Your Company,” teaches companies to implement The Whale Hunters Process, a detailed set of procedures that involve the business owner’s whole team in learning how to sell together.

“While it may be necessary to sell as a team, it’s also the best way to sell a bigger deal,” she said. The real key is how to teach everyone, whatever their role, how to think and behave as a seller—especially the entrepreneur.

The Whale Hunters, Inc. works with small and midsize companies to grow their business fast by selling bigger deals to bigger customers. Learn more at


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