Teachers like to compare their skills to doctors’ and pilots’ but Natalie Solent thinks there’s a better comparison: Sales.
A teacher must get a sceptical audience to share his view of the desirability of what he is offering, as must a salesman. A good teacher must know his subject as a good salesman must know his product. For both there is more to success than product knowledge; enthusiasm and empathy are also involved. Both are born not made, although experience and training can help. For both the constant human interaction can be exhausting. Both will be rejected and insulted every day. The best love their jobs anyway.
Teachers don’t like the comparison.
For one thing, salesmen are not seen as virtuous. This is not mere anti-capitalism, although there is plenty of that, but is more that teachers still cling to their traditional Automatic Professional Virtue Rating, not perceiving how much of that rating came from their low pay.
Good salesmen earn a lot of money, Natalie points out.
Here’s more in an article she wrote for Right Now.