The Gregarious Salesman: Death of a Stereotype

The Huffington Post:

I had to buy a car recently, my first in many years, and I confess I couldn’t stop thinking about Jerry Lundegaard.

Jerry Lundegaard is a Minneapolis car salesman, and the central character in the Coen brothers’ 1996 film classic, Fargo. He is fast-talking, weaselly, dishonest. Played to great comic effect by William H. Macy, Lundegaard is a caricature of all that we expect and fear in those who are out to sell us something.

Okay, so maybe some of this is my stereotyping of car salesmen, and perhaps I’m being unfair. But like a lot of stereotypes, mine has some basis in fact. Not the inept criminal part, but certainly the blustery, glad-handing, over-the-top enthusiasm. It’s well-known that extroverts gravitate toward sales jobs — and they get hired for these jobs — largely based on personality. An outgoing nature seems well suited to selling.

Read the whole story: The Huffington Post

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