Margin Call Movie

by Bob Kuczik

If you decide to get in the sales business you will no doubt encounter times when your integrity will be tested. Selling effectively leads to developing strong relationships. Be careful to avoid selling your product soley on your ability to woo the buyer.

The time when companies kept buyers static in their job is a thing of the past. Now buyers are rotated out to new departments. The good old boy network bred lazy buying decisions which hurt the company. No one is exempt from the need to use good judgement whether buying or selling.

Sale speople and buyers are constantly reminded that gifts, tickets or expensive dinners are cause for termination. When a favorite salesman uses his selling rapport to influence a buyer it results in unfair competition. You could be the one to suffer. It is very frustrating to make a strong proposal with proof of a better product, lower price and superior service only to be turned down by the buyer with no rational explanation.

I was prompted to think about the ethics of selling by the movie, Margin Call, which is now out on DVD.

It is based on the Wall Street financial crisis and deals with the ethical questions facing every member of a fictitious firm. One of it’s stars, Kevin Spacey, said in interviews that the lessons of the movie are ignored today even after the Wall Street fiasco.

The film will have you facing the question “What would I do if my employer asked me to burn every relationship I have in my present and future sales career in exchange for up to 3 million dollars?” That is the pitch Spacey makes to his team of brokers. It’s a very convincing monologue from one of our finest actors.

The financial crisis was triggered at least in part by companies that pushed worthless mortgage backed securities. We all know a friend, neighbor or relative that is suffering from the soaring unemployment rate  and recession.

What would you do if your boss asked you to sell worthless product in exchange for big bucks?

Margin Call – Clip

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