Over the last 40 years, the Super Mario series has established itself in the video game industry as a juggernaut. The beloved franchise was created by Shigeru Miyamoto, and has gone on to be one of the most popular and successful video game series in the world.
Among the many reasons for this success are the characters. Mario’s red hat can be recognized quickly, as well as his blue overalls and mustache. The supporting cast is beloved for its simplistic designs and unique quirks, resulting in worldwide recognition and appeal.
There’s something to be taken away from each character. Mario’s tenaciousness. Luigi’s dedication. Even Bowser’s single-minded determination is admirable, as long as it doesn’t involve kidnapping. Everyone has met people who share these qualities, to some extent or other.
And the more we thought about it, the more we realized that there is a connection between this franchise and sales — namely, the various kinds of SDRs you see around the office.
Mario is easily the most recognizable character in the franchise. As the franchise mascot, his design and color scheme is simple but memorable. Did you know, though, that he was named after a real estate agent responsible for the Nintendo offices in America?
There are many traits that make Mario similar to the over-achiever in your office. He’s the main character in the sales office. Everyone feels like they can approach him with their problems and walk away with valuable advice. This is the guy who crushes his quotas every time, and you suspect it’s because he has secret power-ups just like Mario himself. Everyone wants to be him, and everyone looks up to him.
The scaredy-cat brother of Mario is a beloved character for his quirks. However, did you know that he was initially released as just a color-swapped version of Mario? Later on, the game developers decided to flesh his character out into the lanky, tall, and very stressed plumber we know and love today.
Surely you’ve seen a Luigi in your team — she’s the person who grows more stressed as the day proceeds. There is no one more chaotic in the workplace, and she’s constantly chugging her beloved coffee. Despite all this though, there’s a method to her madness. And in the end, no matter how many coffees and breakdowns she has, she always crushes her quotas. There’s something admirable in that.
Donkey Kong enters the ring, with a roar and broken walls! The Donkey Kong games exist as a part of the Super Mario franchise and enjoyed huge fan followings after the release of the first game.
Donkey Kong is the guy in your office who believes in slamming his way into more meetings. Quantity over quality is his motto. You’ll see him on the phone pushing a prospect into a meeting, or sending off an insane amount of follow-up emails in one day. Maybe it’s not your style, but it works for him.
Bow Before Bowser!!
The antagonist of this series is recognizable for his turtle-like appearance and iconic green-gold color scheme. He’s the reason why Mario goes on a galaxy-crossing journey to save Peach, after all. But his character was first designed after an ox, not a turtle. And his full name is actually inspired by a Korean dish, gukpak!
There’s a stereotype that salespeople are toxic, and this is the person that it’s based on. They are loud, pushy, and just too much. There might have been a time when they were just another rookie among the crowd, but they rose up the ranks and will tell you all about it. But despite all this, there’s a reason why they are the king, and their pushy tactics do work at the end of the day.
Princess Peach is easily recognizable from her beautiful pink dress and gorgeous blonde hair. Unfortunately, she’s always the character stolen away by Bowser at the start of the game, but in the recent games, she’s a playable powerhouse. In 2014, Nintendo declared August as National Peach Month in honor of this character.
Peach is the optimistic girl in the office. This is the person who believes that every sale is going to go through, even when there are clear signs it’s not going to. You call it wasting time on a dead end but she calls it nurturing a prospect. And while it works sometimes, sometimes you need to rescue her from her own fantasies and and just write that break-up email.
The Final Level
The Super Mario franchise is popular for its relatability, and that’s why we can see the characters from the side-scrolling game in the world around us. From the over-achieving Mario to the pushy Bowser, these characters connect to a greater part of our lives. Send this to a colleague and tell them which character they are!