The top 10 movies that all sales people must watch

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We’ve had a couple of new starters recently in the office and it has become routine that we grill them about the films they’ve seen involving sales.

“Have you seen that Baldwin speech in Glengarry Glen Ross?”

“What do you mean you haven’t seen The Wolf Of Wall Street!”

This prompted me to put together the top ten sales movies that all sales people must watch.

There are lessons to take from all of the clips below, however they come with a warning for the easily offended as the “F-bomb” is dropped quite a few times!

So how many can you tick off the list?

The Wolf Of Wall Street

Despite it going against everything I believe in as a sales person – my favourite sales film!

This film follows the life of Jordan Belfort and his rise to the upper echelons of Wall Street as well as his subsequent fall.

Just before he started his firm Stratton Oakmont, here’s a scene below where he’s asking his team to “sell me this pen!”


A film not based on sales – but with multiple sales lessons to be taken out of it.

The Oakland Athletics baseball team brought in the help of a Harvard graduate to look into science of winning baseball matches – it worked and changed the way baseball clubs are ran today.

By taking a more scientific approach in terms of the percentages and your sales process – it certainly helped me look at selling from a different perspective!

Glengarry Glen Ross

This film follows the trials and tribulations of high pressure sales.

Boasting a cast of Al Pacino, Jack Lemmon and Kevin Spacey – it’s Alec Baldwin who completely steals the show with this speech below in a sales meeting with the blundering salesmen.

Not for the faint hearted – I sure hope your sales manager is nothing like this!

Boiler Room

If you want the hard sell – you certainly have it with this film!

A college dropout swaps running his illegal casino to becoming a trainee stock broker.

This scene below shows Ben Affleck running group interviews – which sets the tone for the rest of the film!

The Pursuit of Happyness

The feel-good film follows salesman Christopher Gardner who has invested his money and hopes into a bone density scanner.

After he loses both his wife and his house – he gets a job at a stockbroker, the scene below shows you his approach to cold calling and his mindset behind how he can make more calls than anyone else.

The Big Kahuna

Two experienced industrial lubricants sales people with their younger inexperienced colleague try to land the ‘Big Kahuna’ – a ‘big fish’ prospect called Dick Taylor.

When the younger person’s religious beliefs start getting in the way, it yields some rather funny results!

Cadillac Man

This film follows Robin Williams as he tries to sell twelve cars in two days – or he loses his job.

This scene below shows the hilarious and cringeworthy ways he tries to hit his target!

Two For The Money

When McConaughey and Pacino are in a film together you know it must be good!

Pacino head hunts McConaughey for his firm that sells sports betting tips over the phone.

The scene below shows you Pacino’s response to when he is asked for more commission…

The Goods – Live Hard, Sell Hard

This film follows life in a car dealership and shows the lengths that sales people will go to just to make quota!

It’s good fun and covers a lot of the stereotypes in the sales industry, this hilarious scene below shows the sales manager showing his sales person what lengths he should go to to get the sale!

Jerry Maguire

Need I say more than “Show me the money!”

Every sales person knows that certain prospects will make us jump through hoops to gain their business, and this scene below is no different!

So what is your favourite from the list above?

Have I missed any out that you think should be an essential on the top 10?

I’d love to hear your thoughts

About Sean McPheat


Sean McPheat is the founder and Managing Director of international sales training firm MTD Sales Training, part of theMTD Training Group. He is also the founder of Skillshub, which is an innovative microlearning platform which provides short, focused, online training sessions in under 5 minutes. Sean has been referred to in the media and peers alike as a thought leader within the sales industry.  

MTD won Best HR/L&D Supplier at the 2017 CIPD People Management Awards and have delivered training, coaching and consultancy to over 3,500 different organizations and 100,000+ staff from 23 different countries. Sean leads a team of 25 of the most effective sales trainers in the world and has appeared on TV on several occasions as an expert in the field of sales development. 

Sean is a bestselling author, a much sought-after international speaker and has been a previous finalist in the British Business Awards for his Entrepreneurial achievements.

Sean has been featured on CNN International, the BBC, ITV, SKY, The Guardian, Forbes, Arena Magazine, Marketing Weekly and radio stations such as BBC WM, Insight Radio and LBC (London’s Big Conversation) and has over 300 other media credits to his name. 

He is the author of the FREE Report “450 Sales Questions – What To Ask In Any Sales Situation” which has been downloaded over 35,000 times on the internet.

Sean sends his free sales training tips via email to over 60,000 people interested in sales and management and his sales blog is visited by over 7,000 people each week.

Contact: 0333 320 2883




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23rd Sep 2016 09:46

Put the coffee down!

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23rd Sep 2016 10:21

Cracking list Sean. No Wall Street?

My controversial addition would also be The Big Short, purely as a reminder for the perils of selling a dream over a reality!

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By gnjrjdm
26th Sep 2016 18:47

Thoroughly enjoyed this article as a salesman myself

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05th Oct 2016 13:58

The only one of these I've seen is the Pursuit of Happiness, decent film!

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22nd Feb 2018 17:19

Pursuit of Happyness is actually a great movie to watch. It is a perfect balance of emotion and hardwork. Your destiny is in your hand and there is no shame in learning new things. Wolf of the Wall Street is another great movie, one should watch that also.

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16th Mar 2018 07:34

Amazing list here.

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