The Peace & Power of a Positive Perspective


Archive for July, 2014


I bet our clients are amused (and amazed) to no end by us sales and marketing professionals.

How much time and energy do we spend today discussing and debating the best ways to win the client’s business; their engagement; their loyalty?  We tout we are “Trusted Advisors”; “Subject Matter Experts”; we seek “Client Engagement”; “Likes”; “Links”.  We invest millions of dollars and staff hours in social; mobile; SEO; and ecommerce technologies.

Well, we definitely have those clients surrounded!

I like to openly (and proudly) declare that I am a sales professional.  That’s usually not the positioning my sales brethren prefer tp use.  Their preference?  “Business Development”; “Client Engagement”; “Account Executive”; “District Manager”; are a few of the business card titles sales people like to use to try and disguise that fact that we are – well – sales people.  Do we really think clients can’t tell?

I also spend a fair amount of my time mingling with my marketing professional counterparts.  They like to openly (and proudly) declare that “Sales is no longer relevant!”  They profess it’s now all about “engagement”.  Increase your social media level of engagement and the sales transactions will magically follow.  And I can’t even begin to describe some of their business card titling creativity!

It must be amusing to our clients to observe sales people and marketing people donning our business card disguises and debating the question, “Who owns the customer”?   Let’s face it – we on the vendor side have been arguing this point since last century.  This century?  I’m pretty sure our clients have moved on; amused perhaps; but moved on!

Of course, it does me no good to argue with my marketing colleagues about, “Who owns the client?” and “Is sales still relevant?”  They seem to approach such arguments like engineers do:

Arguing with an engineer is like wrestling a pig in the mud. After a few hours you realize, the pig likes it. 

Unknown Sage

I mean, how many times do we hear marketing professionals profess the value of “mass personalization”?  “Mass Personalization” – what the hell is that!  Do we really think the client doesn’t notice the “mass” aspect of those “personalization” campaigns?

How many sales people still describe themselves as “Trusted Advisors”?  Really?  Do we think our clients have forgotten our sales predecessors who were not trustworthy?   Let’s face it – it was some “Business Development/Engagement Partner/Trusted Advisor” type that caused,

…a firm that once stood for trust and accountability ended 90 years as an auditor of publicly traded companies under a cloud of scandal and shame. (see Chicago Tribune article )

Smell that word “trusted” burning?

I suggest we need to change our traditional (shall I go as far as to say outdated; very 1990’s; legacy; tail lights; yesterday’s news; dead!) views about the amount of “ownership” sales or marketing has over the client.

The reality today – thanks to the modern technology developed by those argumentative engineers – the customer owns the customer.

I believe today the client thinks of us sales and marketing professionals as nothing more than “transaction facilitators”.  (Bet you won’t see that as a business card title!)  They no longer want to answer our “What keeps you up at night?” questions.  They don’t want to “Like” us on Facebook.

They just want to complete their transaction.  And in reality, they’d just as soon buy online and by-pass us altogether.  Amusing to the clients!  Not so much for us sales and marketing types, true?


Did you like this little ditty?  You might enjoy my website too:  The Peace & Power of a Positive Perspective© Please check it out.

Luv our job?

My job “has its moments”.  Yours too?  With today’s wired, always on, always available world, it’s easy to bathe in the waters of continuous, overworked stress, true?  If you’re like me, we need to find some stress relief opportunities throughout each day.  If I don’t – I can become an old-poop-in-the-face – pretty promptly. This is one of my stress reliefs; click on my view at the beginning of the route I take driving home from the office every day:


Our snow-capped, Rocky Mountains – Awesome!  They take my breath away!  They’re one of the many reasons I live in Colorado and love my job.  Plus, they help prevent me from becoming a fatty-grumba! I remember my first sales position in the technology industry and my first sales manager, Dave Schwickerath.  One of the long-lasting impressions he made with me was this:

If you can’t wait to get up in the morning to go to work, then you know you have the right job.

Dave may have studied Confucius:

Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.

Today, I can’t wait to get up and go to work.  It may have taken me 30 years; but I have found the perfect job. Now I’ve had other, stellar jobs over that 30 year span.  Learned a lot; made some money; had some fun.  I suppose all that “wandering” contributes to my capabilities to perform in my current role.  Yes, I “wandered” some throughout my career. But:

Not all those who wander are lost.

J.R.R. Tolkien

Without an extensive and diverse set of experiences, I may not be able to add as much value to my client interactions.  My job today may not be as fulfilling.  You see, my clients are another reason why I love my job.  Their encouragement and appreciation of the work I do, powers me to greater effort; and that powers me to greater fulfillment.  Makes my job fun! Maybe that’s how it works for Mary:

That Mary is the Under-Vice President of Expectation Deflations for the western semi-region tells you nothing.  That Mary is wicked smart, totally frank, and a trip to work with tells you everything.

Rick Levine

I too try to be “a trip to work with”.  I try to be awesome and enthusiastic – every day.  I suppose my style (and my shirts – sorry, inside joke) don’t resonate with everyone.  We are all “an acquired taste” I suppose – even the legendary:

People who read me seem to be divided into four groups; Twenty-five percent like me for the right reasons; 25 percent like me for the wrong reasons; 25 percent hate me for the right reasons.  It’s the last 25 percent that worries me.

Robert Frost

Well, I just try to continue to help my clients and colleagues while having some fun and making some money.  When I can help them realize the same degree of fulfillment in their jobs that I enjoy in mine, that’s awesome! And occasionally I need to remember to check my seriousness; my intensity; at the door:

Sometimes I confuse being serious about what I do with taking myself too seriously.

Tom Connellan

And when I see myself becoming a little-too-serious, fatty-grumba; I just jump in my truck and head home.  Looking at those snow-capped, Rocky Mountains reminds me to lighten up and live each day with awe and enthusiasm!  Hope you do too.


Did you like this little ditty?  You might enjoy my website too:  The Peace & Power of a Positive Perspective© Please check it out.