What is the old profession that has been replaced today by the profession of commercial agent? How was the profession that we currently know as salesmen born?
In order to describe one of the most current professions in our world, we must go far back in history to find your roots and see how it has evolved to what we know today.
The history of the sale and the sellers
It could be said that the origin of sales is found in Prehistory, when primitive man (who was still unaware of fire and pottery) began to practice bartering as a simple commercial form, exchanging what they had in excess for what they needed with other humans.
This barter system evolved along with societies, with exchanges between members of different civilizations and even between civilizations.
The evolution of trade before Christ
In the centuries before Christ already we can begin to see the first commercial exchanges of products for "money". Barter became increasingly complex, so as it evolved, it was sought to obtain goods, through exchange, that had a more stable value, and of high value in relation to their volume.
In the year 12,000 BC, we found that Anatolian obsidian was already used as a form of money.
In the year 9,000 BC, the grain is the "coinMore frequent for exchange between civilizations.
As the expansion and evolution of humanity continued, the goods that were most reused were those that were chosen for exchanges.
From the year 2,500 BC in Mesopotamia (and in Egypt) the precious metals as "currency".
It is this civilization that developed its large-scale economy as we use it today, based on money-merchandise, an advance that we can find in the different Mesopotamian legal codes such as Ur-Nammu Code, the Eshunna Code, or the Hammurabi Code.
It is precisely in the Code of Hammurabi where the use of "money" in society is formalized, setting pesos in silver to pay, for example, interest on a debt or fines for violating local laws.
The first coins
The first coins in history circulated in China in the year 1100 BC, which were actually knives, axes and other tools made in miniature and in bronze, which they used to make exchanges.
The first coins minted arose in Lydia (Turkey) between 680 BC. and 560 BC, under the reign (probably) of Ardis of Lydia.
He followed Persia, when Darío gave the order for the minting once he conquered Lidia.
From that moment, the minting of coins spread rapidly throughout all civilizations developed, created to certify the authenticity of its metallic value.
As societies became more complex, the division of labor became more necessary since a person or community could not encompass everything necessary for survival and well-being. In addition, the growth of a society was bringing with it different types of internal organizations, counting on authorities that tried to order in some way the entire set of inhabitants.
This caused that barter became practically impossible, and that some members of the organizational system began to try "to sell"Their products to their peers first, and to other civilizations later, thus giving rise to sellers.
Sellers who, in many cases, They served as intermediaries between one population and another, charging a commission for carrying out transactions.
Frequent expansions and conquests they made the trade become more and more perfect, and for merchants to search for increasingly special and expensive items offered by other civilizations, in order to increase their profits, their power and their reputation.
The Silk Road It is perhaps the case best known to all, where merchants from all over Europe made trips that lasted years only with the aim of bringing unusual objects of superlative value into their territories.
We also know very well the example of street vendors during Antiquity and the Middle Ages, people who moved from one place to another with their products to offer them to the populations.
The case that we most know from literature, movies or even video games, is that of «ointment seller«, Both those that were used for" hygiene "and for" health ", although the vendors were characterized by offering all kinds of objects.
The Industrial Revolution and the rise of modern salespeople
With the Industrial Revolution began the profession that we could call "modern seller”. The first were also street vendors, although many of them gradually established themselves in the cities, and where they offered the huge variety of new products that emerged thanks to the advances of the time.
From then on, and especially in the 1980s and 1990s, sellers became more and more professional, trying to know their customers very well to be able to offer them the products they needed, and trying to satisfy them as much as possible, which would ensure recurring sales and customer loyalty.
From the 90s onwards the information age, which meant a great revolution in all senses, including that of salespeople and commercial agents, who had to abandon practically all the practices they carried out so far for new techniques in which the customer became the center and, above all , he was much more informed than in previous years.
Images: Creative Commons on Wikimedia
After studying History at the University and after many previous tests, Red Historia was born, a project that emerged as a means of dissemination where you can find the most important news of archeology, history and humanities, as well as articles of interest, curiosities and much more. In short, a meeting point for everyone where they can share information and continue learning.