Definition of salesman noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary

 

salesman

 noun
noun
BrE BrE//ˈseɪlzmən//
 
; NAmE NAmE//ˈseɪlzmən//
 
(pl. salesmen
BrE BrE//ˈseɪlzmən//
 
; NAmE NAmE//ˈseɪlzmən//
 
)
In the store
 
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a man whose job is to sell goods, for example, in a shop/store a car salesman More AboutgenderWays of talking about men and women When you are writing or speaking English it is important to use language that includes both men and women equally. Some people may be very offended if you do not.The human race Man and mankind have traditionally been used to mean ‘all men and women’. Many people now prefer to use humanity, the human race, human beings or people.Jobs The suffix -ess in names of occupations such as actress, hostess and waitress shows that the person doing the job is a woman. Many people now avoid these. Instead you can use actor or host (although actress and hostess are still very common), or a neutral word, such as server for waiter and waitress. Neutral words like assistant, worker, person or officer are now often used instead of -man or -woman in the names of jobs. For example, you can use police officer instead of policeman or policewoman, and spokesperson instead of spokesman or spokeswoman. Neutral words are very common in newspapers, on television and radio and in official writing, in both British English and North American English. When talking about jobs that are traditionally done by the other sex, some people say: a male secretary/nurse/model (NOT man) or a woman/female doctor/barrister/driver. However this is now not usually used unless you need to emphasize which sex the person is, or it is still unusual for the job to be done by a man/​woman: My daughter prefers to see a woman doctor.They have a male nanny for their kids.a female racing driverPronouns He used to be considered to cover both men and women: Everyone needs to feel he is loved. This is not now acceptable. Instead, after everybody, everyone, anybody, anyone, somebody, someone, etc. one of the plural pronouns they, them, and their is often used: Does everybody know what they want?Somebody’s left their coat here.I hope nobody’s forgotten to bring their passport with them. Some people prefer to use he or she, his or her, or him or her in speech and writing: Everyone knows what’s best for him or herself. He/​she or (s)he can also be used in writing: If in doubt, ask your doctor. He/​she can give you more information. (You may find that some writers just use ‘she’.) These uses can seem awkward when they are used a lot. It is better to try to change the sentence, using a plural noun. Instead of saying: A baby cries when he or she is tired you can say Babies cry when they are tired. More Like This Masculine, feminine and ungendered form anchorman/​anchorwoman, assemblyman/​assemblywoman, businessman/​businesswoman/​businessperson, actor/​actress, cameraman/​camerawoman, chairman/​chairwoman/​chair, congressman/​congresswoman, nobleman/​noblewoman, patrolman/​patrolwoman, policeman/​policewoman/​police officer, salesman/​saleswoman/​salesperson, spokesman/​spokeswoman/​spokesperson, sportsman/​sportswoman/​sportsperson, stuntman/​stuntwoman, waiter/​waitress/​waitperson, weatherman/​weathergirlSee worksheet. See related entries: In the storeExtra examples He began his career as an insurance salesman. He spent two years at college before becoming a BMW car salesman. He worked as a travelling salesman for a company that made soap dispensers for the restaurant trade. I don’t trust him—he looks like a used car salesman.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: salesman