銷售人士的兩難──THE SALESPERSON’S DILEMMA

許多從事銷售的人士都會告訴我一個類似的故事。當有增加業績的壓力時,他們就會開始聽到老板指示說:「在電話上與客戶交談時,為了成交,你可以說任何的話。」從本質上來說,這些銷售人士被命令撒謊來獲得客戶。

這給那些,渴望用正直和不妥協的方式,去實踐信仰的人,造成了兩難的困境。他們會問自己:「我是要撒謊,還是要冒著失去工作的風險,去做正確的事呢?」

無疑的,這不是一個令人舒服的處境。去做被交代的事情,是很容易合理化的,人們會說:「畢竟,我需要這份工作來維持生計。」但是,當我們努力,把信仰融入職場中的責任和要求時,我們要想到聖經是如何說的。

例如,在舊約箴言中,我們發現許多對做誠實人的鼓勵,以及對不誠實後果所做出的警告。箴言20章17節提醒說:「以虛謊而得的食物,人覺甘甜;但後來,他的口必充滿塵沙。」這聽起來夠引人注意嗎?另一節經文也告訴我們:「施行仁慈的,令人愛慕;窮人強如說謊言的。」(箴言19章22節)

另一方面,箴言10章9節說:「行正直路的,步步安穩;走彎曲道的,必致敗露。」 一個謊言,甚至是扭曲我們能為客戶做什麽,可能會帶來暫時的成功,但欺騙終究還是會被發現的。

聖經中充滿了,我們要如何處理妥協和不道德狀況的智慧。請思考一下,我們在耶穌基督的登山寶訓中,所發現的一些真理和應許:

你到底是在為誰工作?作為基督徒,我們要向一個比任何老板都更高的權柄報告。「一個人不能事奉兩個主;不是惡這個、愛那個,就是重這個、輕那個。你們不能又事奉上帝,又事奉瑪門 ( 瑪門:財利的意思)。」(馬太福音6章24節)一個問自己最好的問題就是:「我最終是在服事誰?」

上帝信實的供應。在嚴厲的告誡之後,耶穌向祂的追隨者作出了這樣的保證。「所以我告訴你們,不要為生命憂慮吃甚麼,喝甚麼;為身體憂慮穿甚麼。…你們要先求他的國和他的義,這些東西都要加給你們了。所以,不要為明天憂慮,因為明天自有明天的憂慮;一天的難處一天當就夠了。」(馬太福音6章25-34節)

我們是可以祈求的。當被試探用撒謊來達成銷售時,我們傾向依靠自己的行為,而非相信神的及時回應。與其撒謊或誇大事實,為什麽不禱告,向神尋求祂的指引呢?耶穌說:「你們祈求,就給你們;尋找,就尋見;叩門,就給你們開門。因為凡祈求的,就得着;尋找的,就尋見;叩門的,就給他開門。(馬太福音7章7-8節)

當被試探在壓力的景況下屈服時,重要的是要記住:長久的客戶會尋找不動搖和誠實的人。在短期內少賺一點,或失去一個潛在的銷售業績,都比被視為騙子好。無論付出什麽代價,都要堅定地持守真理。

@2022版權所有,經許可改編自 “UBN誠信時刻”,關於職場工作中信仰議題的評論。UBN是一個服務小型企業界的國際性職場信仰事工。UBN的官網: www.unconventionalbusiness.org

備註:如果你有一本聖經,想閱讀更多的內容,可以考慮以下經文:
箴言12章19節
12:19 口吐真言,永遠堅立;舌說謊話,只存片時。
箴言12章22節
12:22 說謊言的嘴為耶和華所憎惡;行事誠實的,為他所喜悅。
箴言13章6節
13:6 行為正直的,有公義保守;犯罪的,被邪惡傾覆。
箴言14章5節
14:5 誠實見證人不說謊話;假見證人吐出謊言。
箴言16章11章
16:11 公道的天平和秤都屬耶和華;囊中一切法碼都為他所定。
箴言19章5節
19:5 作假見證的,必不免受罰;吐出謊言的,終不能逃脫。
箴言20章25節
20:25 人冒失說, 這是聖物,許願之後才查問,就是自陷網羅。
箴言24章26節
24:26 應對正直的,猶如與人親嘴。
歌羅西書3章17節、23-24節
3:17 無論做甚麼,或說話或行事,都要奉主耶穌的名,藉着他感謝父上帝。
3:23 無論做甚麼,都要從心裏做,像是給主做的,不是給人做的,
3:24 因你們知道從主那裏必得着基業為賞賜;你們所事奉的乃是主基督。

反省與問題討論

  1. 你是否曾經遇到過這樣的情況:你的老板或上司鼓勵甚至施壓給你說:為了達成銷售業績,你可以說任何的話?如果有,你是如何回應的?你考慮的因素是什麽 ?
  2. 撒謊或欺騙顧客,說明了我們對神的信心和應許的信賴程度如何?這又會如何影響我們在職場上作基督使者的見證呢?
  3. 你能想到什麽時候,自己會想:「好吧!我知道這是聖經的教導,但這裡是狗咬狗的現實世界。我們必須不擇手段才能成功?」你現在對這種試著合理化的思維有什麽看法呢?
  4. 如果我們一開始就提醒自己:「神是我們必須尊榮的那一位,祂應許供應我們的每一個需要,每當我們向祂祈求指引時,祂總樂意給我們。」這會幫助我們應對每一天的工作,帶來什麼改變嗎?


THE SALESPERSON’S DILEMMA

By   Rick Boxx

Many salespeople have told me a similar story. When the pressure to produce rises, they begin hearing their bosses instruct them, “If you get someone on the phone, tell them whatever you have to in order to close the sale.” In essence, these salespeople are commanded to lie to gain customers. 

This creates a dilemma for those who desire to live out their faith with integrity and without compromising. They ask themselves, “Do I lie, or do I do the right thing and risk losing my job?” 

Without a doubt, this is not a comfortable situation to be in. It would be easy to justify doing what they have been told. “After all, I need this job to earn a living.” But when striving to integrate our faith into our workplace responsibilities and demands, we need to consider what the Bible has to say.

For instance, in the Old Testament book of Proverbs we find many encouragements for being truthful – and warnings about the consequences of dishonesty. Proverbs 20:17 cautions, “Food gained by fraud tastes sweet to a man, but he ends up with a mouth full of gravel.” Does that sound appealing? Another verse tells us, “What a man desires is unfailing love; better to be poor than a liar” (Proverbs 19:22).

On the other hand, Proverbs 10:9 declares, “A man of integrity walks securely, but he who takes crooked paths will be found out.” A lie or even a misrepresentation of what we are able to do for a customer might give us temporary success, but deceit has a way of being discovered.

The Bible is filled with wisdom for how we should approach compromising and unethical situations. Consider just a few of the truths and promises we find in Jesus Christ’s Sermon on the Mount:

Who are you really working for? As Christ’s followers, we report to an authority higher than whoever our boss might be. “No one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and Monday” (Matthew 6:24). A good question to ask ourselves is, “Who am I ultimately serving?”

God’s faithful provision. After this stern admonition, Jesus gave this assurance to His followers: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear…. But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own” (Matthew 25-34).

Ours for the asking. When tempted to lie to close a sale, we are relying on our own initiative rather than trusting in the timely response of God. Rather than lying or stretching the truth, why not pray and ask God for His direction? Jesus said, “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knows, the door will be opened” (Matthew 7:7-8)

When tempted to bend under pressure, it is important to remember that long-term customers are looking for someone steadfast and honest. It is better to earn less in the short-term, or lose a potential sale, than to become known as a liar. Regardless of the cost, stand firm in truth! 

Copyright 2022, Unconventional Business Network. Adapted with permission from “UBN Integrity Moments”, a commentary on faith at work issues. Visit www.unconventionalbusiness.org. UBN is a faith at work ministry serving the international small business community.

Reflection/Discussion Questions

  1. Have you ever been in a situation where your boss – the person to whom you were reporting – encouraged or even pressured you to “tell them whatever you have to in order to close the sale”? If so, how did you respond? What were factors you considered?
  2. What does lying to or deceiving a customer say about the quality of our faith in God and our trust in His promises? How does this affect our witness as ambassadors for Christ in the marketplace?
  3. Can you think of a time when you thought, “Well, I know that is what the Bible teaches, but this is the real world. It is dog-eat-dog out here, and we must do whatever is necessary to succeed”? What are your thoughts about this kind of rationale now?
  4. How would it make a difference in how we approach each workday if we reminded ourselves at the start that God is the One we must honor, that He promises to provide for our every need, and whenever we pray to Him for guidance He will readily give it to us?

NOTE: If you have a Bible and would like to read more, consider the following passages:
Proverbs 12:19,22, 13:6, 14:5, 16:11, 19:5, 20:25, 24:26; Colossians 3:17,23-24


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