Anniversary Post

Today marks my one year anniversary blogging.

First things first. Thank you, Dave, and thank you, Pete. You guys were there first. You encouraged me and coached me. Gave me ideas and challenges. I’m sure that I made you shake your head sometimes, but you hung in there.

To the rest of you, I still don’t think of myself as a blogger. I’m a sales development expert with a blog.

I was thinking about sharing statistics as to which were the most popular posts.

Boring! Boring! Boring!

So, how about this? I posted 170 times over the past year.

Were any of them especially relevant to you? Which one and why?

Did you have a favorite comment or commentator?

Lastly, is there a topic (sales related) that you’d like to see me address, expand upon, or approach from a different perspective?


The RainMaker Maker

The Way of the Peaceful Warrior

I’ve read several books that I think have made an impact on my life, both professionally and personally. Occasionally, a friend or co-worker will be sharing a problem, conflict, or concern and I’ll be reminded of the impact that a particular book had on my handling of a similar problem in my own life. I still remember the first time that I read Dan Millman’s, The Way of the Peaceful Warrior. I remember feeling S H O C K! This book absolutely changed my life. Changed the way I looked at life. Actually, changed my opinion of my “place” in the world. I’ve recommended the book often.

Last night, Dave Kurlan posted about his recent lunch with Dan Millman. (God! Sometimes I’m just so jealous!) Anyway, Dan gave Dave some news and I’m not going to steal any thunder. You can read about it here.

See you there!


A I D A Mistakes

One of the original sales acronyms is A I D A. (Attention, Interest, Desire, Action) (Google it if you’ve never seen it before.)

If you consider yourself a sales aficionado, this is a reminder that it’s a 24 hour/day thing.

I called my wife on the way home tonight. I obviously interrupted her. She sounded distracted and frustrated with whatever she was doing. I told her that I was on my way home and asked her if she needed anything. She said, “No.” So, I told her that I’d see her in a bit and started to hang up. As I was reaching for the “End” button, I heard her asking, “Where are you?” I thought about just ending the call, but decided that if I did, I’d never get into heaven. So, I asked, “What?” She repeated. I told her, “Highland Street”. She said that she needed vegetables and I asked her, “If you needed vegetables, why did you tell me that you didn’t need anything?”

So, who screwed up?

Easy! Me! I’m the guy!

That’s not exactly right. I did screw up, but it’s not a gender thing. I started the conversation. I didn’t have her attention. I had no business asking any deeper questions if she wasn’t paying attention. How many times do you “pitch” a prospect who’s not paying attention?

You can start here.

Plumbers Have Responsibilities, Too

A few weeks ago, a friend of mine came to visit me. While he was visiting, another friend asked me about him, so I introduced them. As it turns out, my second friend was looking for a plumber and they had a follow up conversation. The next day, another friend suggested another plumber (I knew him, too.) This brought to mind three other possibilities, so my second friend had 5 choices.

Confused yet? No sweat! Here it comes. The first introduction was an accident. Had my second friend asked me if I knew a good plumber, I would have introduced him to #2, first. I probably would have mentioned the others, but I would have given #2 an advantage. #2 couldn’t do the deal. He’s the best solution. The most highly trained. Should have gotten the business. Hasn’t.

So, how should I feel? He’s the only plumber that I had a conversation with to give the lay of the land. He’s not in the running and I’m bummed. What should I do?

Incidentally, we’re not really talking about plumbers. The occupation’s been changed to protect the guilty.

Salespeople’s Rights and Prospects’ Rights

I was talking with my mother about this post on Monday evening (Yeah, she’s a reader.) and she accused me of “judging” my suspect. I respectfully disagreed with her. I suggested that I’m not saying that what the suspect did was right or wrong. I’m taking full responsibility for my decision as to whether I will work under the conditions that he is placing on me. (I wonder. Is he taking full responsibility for his actions?) I’ve tried twice to write a detailed dissertation giving signals, explaining cause and effect, etc.

Dan, Dave and Pete made great comments that are on target and specific to this situation.

I’ll take a different approach.

Some people vote the party…Others vote the candidate.

Some prefer a small local bank…Others prefer one of the big three.

Is your CPA, lawyer, insurance agent, IT support, etc. a “one man show” or part of a large firm?

Do you prefer high end or cheapest? Blondes or brunettes? Coke or Pepsi?

Are you generally optimistic or pessimistic? (Either way, don’t you think that you’re a realist?)

My point is that we have certain beliefs and make certain decisions. We decide who we like. Who we want to do business with. When we’ll bend and when we’ll hold firm.

This suspect decides how he wants to live. If he wants to blow off appointments, it’s his perogative. If he wants to use big words, it’s his choice. If he wants to be “pulled into meetings” or not schedule enough time for his conference calls, he has the right. It’s his life. It’s his business and I have no right to object or try to change him.

On the flip side, if I insist on punctuality. If I intentionally schedule “fluff time” after my appointments to allow for run-over. If I use simple words to communicate. I recognize that some people will accuse me of being arrogant, too hard, or suggest that the world isn’t black and white and I’m OK with the risk that they won’t like me. Why isn’t that OK?

Even if he needs my help, he doesn’t have to admit it. Even if I need a sale, it doesn’t have to be him.

In this case, I will never schedule another call with this guy. However, I seriously doubt that he’ll ever ask for another chance. Isn’t it interesting that we agree?