Verkaufsscheu. Sales shy.

Companies with a monopoly are the only ones who don’t need sales and marketing. All others need to fight for new customers on a daily basis. In Germany, too. But Germans don’t feel comfortable knocking on doors, even less so following up on an initial contact if the first response was skeptical.

Follow-up means making that second or third call, writing that second or third email, reaching out again. What’s the problem? Germans don’t like pushing their product or service, especially if they sense that the other party may not be interested. Often Germans are too polite, too slow, not aggressive enough.

Perhaps this is related to Germans identifying themselves strongly with their work. They want to stand fully and totally behind what they do. Sales also involves uncertainty, unpredictability, and situations for which one cannot fully prepare. The interactions can be short, spontaneous, shallow. Germans prefer predictability and depth.