How to Make a Sale like the Wolf of Wall Street

A few weeks ago we shared a blog post with a short scene from the movie “The Wolf of Wall Street”.
I got some responses saying that this movie sheds a bad light on salespeople’s Behavior and perception.

Regardless of your feelings on the movie, I think there is more to it than just greed and the chase after money. And after all, at the heart of it there are lessons every salesperson should know. (Guest Post)

The other day a friend of mine who had startup from college asked me to ask my classmates to register on his website. Hearing that he had asked many others to do the talking for him, I retorted saying-“The right person to do the job of spreading about your startup is you. I have no qualms doing it but I cannot have the same passion as you do”. His impetuous reply was a shock. “Bro, that will be like selling”.

My mind told me “Boy, this guy will never succeed in this if this attitude is a constant”. Advising him to knock on each classroom, introduce himself and talk about his startup to increase usage fell on deaf years. Is selling below one’s dignity?

A quote by R.L Stevenson makes truckloads of sense here – “Everyone lives by selling something”. Yes, everybody sells on a daily basis. You sell your skills and attitude when you sit for an interview, you sell the quality of your products when you put up a shop, examples are aplenty.

I learned how to sell when I was 17, I was pursuing my engineering when I got introduced into a company where I had to sell online computer courses by giving face to face presentations. This brought me to different parts of the country over a period of four years. Was it any good? You bet. I realized that selling was my thing and learned the importance of a few traits required in selling.

Most of you would have watched Martin Scorsese’s ‘The Wolf of the Wall Street’ where DiCaprio plays the role of Jordan Belfort, a scheming stockbroker who is as good a salesman as he was greedy.

The first thing that you inadvertently acquire when selling is learning the art of ‘shamelessness’.

Being Shameless:

The reason that being shameless is of paramount importance because there are lot of rejections that are at a salesman’s way. Remember the scene where Leonardo sells penny stocks to unsuspecting buyers who fall for his glib talk and even say that they are gladdened to have got his call.

The stocks he sells are usually of below par organizations but the way he puts it across makes all his colleagues agape at him with wonder. Believe in something so much that you are shameless enough to talk about it everywhere. Sales is such a rare skill because failure is absolutely vital in sales, this is where you learn and your true character is on display.

Show them ‘Why’:

The ‘How’ or ‘What’ is not usually that important, it is always in the ‘Why’. All the greatest men to have ever walked on earth will vouch for this formula.

“He who has a why can endure any how.” — Frederick Nietzsche.

Show your prospective customers why they should buy your product, if you have this seeped deep into their mind, the rest is a cakewalk, and you might end up walking home with your check.

Charm & Chutzpah:

The intellect of a Suppandi or the guile of a Shikari Shambu will never make a sale. You want an example? Harvey Specter it is. With the kind of charm, confidence and a pinch of arrogance possessed by this man, it is almost impossible that he will look wanting when he tries to make a sale.

He dresses to kill, carries his attitude on his sleeve, does not ever fail to impress anybody, and struts his stuff, without a doubt, he is the man. Do yourself a favor by watching the American sitcom Suits where you can see all of this in its finest glory. Observe. Learn.

Be positive. Always. Smile too.

There is nothing more incredible than a man or a woman who oozes positivity. Who would want to sit near a loser who whines and rants 24*7? Oh, wait, no one will buy anything from you too. A smile is the biggest arsenal for a salesperson as long as it is genuine.

A positive attitude will take you a long way since a sales job is strife with obstacles and rejections. Oh, you’ll see DiCaprio smiling a lot too.

Network Network Network:

For real estate, its ‘Location Location Location’, for sales guys, it is ‘Network Network Network’. Nothing is more powerful than the right contacts for a salesperson. Network is certainly not about collecting business cards after a networking event.

It’s good to make friends, but it is even better to make money. Make the right connections with the right people to expand your business requires focus and discipline. Focus on building business relationships.
Advertise yourself as if you are introducing yourself.

Strategize to meet your potential prospects:

Create a list of the top 10 contacts that you want to meet, figure out a plan on how to meet them using your existing contacts and friends. Don’t give a normal elevator pitch. Think about how to make a connection. You can also go for sales management software which can help you to manage your prospects and customers.


Do your homework as much as possible about the prospect. HAVE A GREAT CONVERSATION. Take the time to prepare a killer introduction of yourself. Then talk about anything- an industry report, the conference that you just attended or even the weather. Keep in the back of your hand that ‘you need to create a business contact and not become a pitching machine’.

All said, being in sales can be one of the most frustrating and enriching experience. If you want to make higher sales growth, make a dogged effort to be committed towards it. Stick to your game plan and be consistent towards it. At the end of the day, every potential client of yours is someone who wants good business too, have this in mind and you are gold!

Author Bio:

Misha holds a Master degree in Marketing and bachelor in computer application. She works as a content & marketing executive at SoftwareSuggest. She likes travelling to hill stations and reading novels.

Published by

Ohad Oren

Ohad Oren is Co-Founder and COO of ONDiGO. Prior to ONDiGO he Co-founded several start-ups. Ohad has years of experience in Sales and Business Management. You can follow him on twitter on @OrenOhad

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