Oddly Enough

Making cold calls? People would rather give up sex

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The prospect of making cold calls for a week as a salesperson is more unappealing than giving up sex for a month, a survey showed this week.

Only getting a root canal was deemed worse than making sales calls to businesses people did not know, said the survey of 1,226 respondents about public attitudes in the United States toward salespeople.

From five options presented, one-third of the people said a root canal was worst, followed by cold calls at 23 percent and giving up sex for a month at 18 percent.

Of the other worsts, 15 percent picked being a surprise guest on a reality television show and 13 percent chose speaking in front of an audience.

The random online survey was conducted in February for Sandler Training, a sales management training company based in Owings Mills, Maryland, by Inforsurv, an Atlanta-based research company. It has a margin of error of 3 percentage points.

Asked to choose among types of salespeople, respondents said they trusted those who sell cars the least, followed by financial services salespeople. Retail salespeople were ranked the most trustworthy.

Being contacted by door-to-door salespeople ranked as most annoying, while being contacted by e-mail or social media was the least aggravating.

Writing by Ellen Wulfhorst, Editing by Mark Egan and John O’Callaghan