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Never a dull moment: selling microscopes to doctors, pathologists, geologists, metallurgist, entomologists
Author: Laura van Laeren (Faculty of Science: Media and Communication)
Published: 29/06/2022

​​​“The better salespeople out there are the ones who know their field really well. People will respect you and trust you more." – Dewald Noeth, MSc-graduate in biochemistry.

Dewald Noeth graduated with a BSc degree in Human Life Science from Stellenbosch University in 2008. He subsequently did his BScHons and MSc in Biochemistry. Dewald is currently a Technical Sales Specialist in the Microscopy Division of Wirsam Scientific and Precision Equipment Pty Ltd.
“I am a Technical Sales Specialist, so I sell laboratory equipment," says Dewald. “I specialise in microscopes, from light microscopes to atomic force microscopes and even scanning electron microscopes. My job is to find new customers and build relationships with them, try to figure out their needs and offer them equipment that suits those needs. Then, also keeping them happy afterwards."

Dewald's favourite part about his job is connecting with people. He said, “I'm an extrovert, so for me, it is building relationships with my customers. I also enjoy the variety; most people think that only doctors use microscopes, this is not true at all. Yes, a pathologist may use one, but so do geologists, metallurgists, entomologists, not to mention all the research departments at a university. There's never a dull moment and always more to learn."

Dewald credits the variety of skills learnt during his time at SU for his success in his career. “I am able to walk into another life-science department and make suggestions on methods that can be used for research. I learned how to present in the department – it gave me the confidence I have now to do my demonstrations and presentations to my customers. I was very involved with the student societies and was even awarded the SU Rector's award for Excellent Achievement in Leadership in 2011. Those leadership skills that I developed are implemented daily with my team."

His advice to students thinking of going into technical sales is to study hard. “The better salespeople out there are the ones who know their field really well. People will respect you and trust you more. Variety is the spice of life. Try to learn from the people around you and get involved! It will help you on your journey to build relationships with customers and colleagues.“

This BSc-alumnus profile is part of the Faculty of Science's #100CareersinScience project. E-mail us at if you want to share your career journey with current students.

​​On the photo: Dewald Noeth. Photo supplied