I hope that you enjoy this article. There have been some interesting changes in the past 4.5 billion years and it might be interesting as well as enlightening to look at what's changed, what's gone away forever and what's come back.
Let me start with Yogi, who reportedly suggested, "When You Come To A Fork In The Road, TAKE IT!"
Dave Kurlan's first article of the year talked about, Has Buying Changed and Has B2B Selling Adapted?
Almost every day, some expert offers there opinion on How Covid-19 has changed work.
Does any of this really matter to YOU?
I went to a seminar in my 30's that suggested that everyone in the audience should think of themselves as You Yourself Inc. In other words, whether you're selling widgets for a company or selling your services as a consultant, you're building your reputation.
8 Years ago, Pete Caputa suggested, "Salespeople should build their expertise publicly, in order to command respect and trust from prospects - more quickly and more easily."
Google search suggests that about half of workers today are not satisfied in their work situation. Which is why I'm writing this article. If I could share my client list, you'd notice that many of them no longer work for the company that they worked for when we worked together. Some became sales rock stars and are among the top producers in their company every year. Others rose through the ranks to become sales managers, directors or VPs for their company or were hired away by other companies. Still others started their own companies or consultancies, especially in the past couple of years. Think about it. Working remotely? Wondering if they could make their customers happy without an employer? Lately, I've had several conversations with employees who want to build their 2023/2024 gig while still doing a great job for their current employer.
The biggest obstacle that keeps employee from going out on their own is "Can they get enough business to live the life that they and their family want to live?" This is an excerpt from an email that I sent to a prospect that is asking exactly that.
December 29th was my 70th birthday. I start with that for three reasons.
- I was never good at selling cookies, chocolate, magazines, etc in school. I brought the stuff home and my mother told her friends that they had to buy. Years later, my mother told me that "I was the last one of her sons that she thought would ever be a salesman" I was very shy. However, I have always had the word sales in my job title.
- My intention as a 30 year old was to retire on 12/29/1999 and never work in the 2000s. I hadn't found my passion yet. So, I didn't get it done, but I did retire in 2006 when I sold my business. I retired again in 2011 when I left Kurlan & Associates. I have a friend that introduces us as "This is my friend Rick. He and I are both retired, but neither of us is very good at it." My wife asks when I'll retire, and I answer, "When they stop calling or it stops being fun."
- Finally and most relevantly, I started a debt collection agency in 1986. I had no money for advertising. There was no internet. So, I made cold telephone calls. I hated cold calls and resolved to get good at getting referrals. I wrote this article 27 years later in 2013 as well as this one. They ultimately led to this third post on churn. Find the links to the first and second in the third and read them first.
In hindsight, I should have included this article on How to tell the difference between good customers and bad customers. I now realize that I was a gig worker and I successfully figured out how to balance looking for my next gig with delighting my current client so that they would evangelize and tell everyone how happy I made them.
Get this. I live at Goose Rocks Beach in Maine. I'm writing this article today at my son's house in Montana (2,656 miles away). I talked with a new prospect this morning. I sent an email to the prospect that I talked to yesterday. Now, I'm sharing this article with you. I've got a few more things to do, then I'll turn back into Papa, for Beau and Annabel. It's a good life.
If you've ever wondered if you could be on your own, start here.