If you've been left incredibly frustrated by an IT salesperson who just won't listen and the end result isn't what you wanted, we can guarantee you're not alone.
Craig Urizzola, CIO at Saladino's, a US food service distributor, is one of the many people who share your frustration.
"We told the IT salespeople exactly what we wanted," said Urizzola. "But their proposal came back with 10 more servers than we asked for. They just don't listen."
However, whether it's executing transactions, guidance and advice or a heads-up about forthcoming products that may solve real business problems, we just can't live without IT salespeople.
Unfortunately, although technology has made quantum leaps over the years, salespeople haven't changed much. And today, as ever, too few of them act as honest advisers and problem-solvers. Too many are dime-a-dozen drones who stick to marketing scripts and are more concerned with selling what they want to sell than they are with selling what you need to buy.
We spoke with seasoned IT executives to uncover the sales archetypes that drive them crazy.
The Yes Man
This person oversells his product, promising you the moon and delivering nothing but trouble. When pressed on whether the product can solve your problem, he says: "Sure! It will do that and unify all your systems and make everything run nice and smooth. And by the way, it also cures male-pattern baldness." (We're kidding about that last one. Sort of.)
The sales rep simply might not know whether the product meets your needs, but he's afraid to admit it, so he takes the easy way out, which is to nod and say yes to whatever you ask.
"A lot of salespeople pretend to know our business, but they end up giving us something we don't need," says Joshua Koppel, assistant director of IT at the Chicago Department of Revenue. He adds that salespeople frequently gloss over compatibility and integration issues, or ignore them altogether. "We end up tweaking and tweaking, and that costs money," Koppel says.
Sometimes the yes man is just trying to hit his monthly quota. In that case, he's often hard to find after he makes the sale.
NEXT PAGE: Why we hate pessimistic salespeople