Tag Archives: early

Part 2: The Early Bird Meets the Boogeyman

darkmanIn my previous article, “The Early Bird Gets the Sale”, I mentioned that I occasionally have to leave very, very early in the morning in order to make it to my breakfast meetings.

Regardless of the time of day, I caution anyone travelling alone to always be on alert and I’m not just referring to paying attention to the road, but also to your surroundings.   I have to admit, this can be quite difficult in the middle of the night.

To all of my fellow salesmen  and women who hit the road dark and early, this story will serve as a reminder to keep your eyes and ears peeled at all times, because you just never know what sort of shady characters might be lurking in the darkness around you.

One morning I had a 7am breakfast meeting which was a 2.5h drive from home. It was 4:25am, quiet and pitch black outside.  I got into my car, and began to organize my “mobile office” for the day.  As my car was warming up, I placed my laptop on the passenger seat and booted it up.  I normally boot up my computer fully in the morning and then put it to sleep or in hibernation mode throughout the day so that I can easily open and close it before and after meetings rather than have to start it up and shut it down every time.  As I was opening up all of the computer programs that I would use throughout my day, I organized my sales reports, notes and my agenda on the passenger seat.  This whole process usually takes me about 5 minutes.

Once I had everything organized, I glanced at the dashboard clock, smiled and thought to myself “This is great! I feel awake and I’m on time!”. As I closed my laptop and sat back upright in the driver’s seat, I noticed something out of the corner of my left eye.  Before turning my head, I glanced slightly to my left thinking maybe it was just my hair and there it was, the most terrifying thing I had ever seen…

There was a man whose face was covered in bandages pressed up against the window of the driver side of my car!!!  I was so distracted looking at the passenger side of my car that I never saw him approach my vehicle.

I completely panicked!  All I could do was start screaming and flail my hands in the air. As I was doing that, I was thinking to myself how disappointed I was in myself that I was that girl. You know, that girl in the horror movies that just gets paralyzed with fear, screams and then gets brutally murdered?  I am an avid horror movie buff and I really thought that all of those years of watching horror movies would better prepare me for when I would encounter a real life boogeyman; I would be better than that and certainly not be that girl.  But this guy looked just like Darkman! And it was the middle of the night!

Ok,Time to suck it up Princess!” I told myself.  I had to take action, so I immediately threw my car into reverse and backed out of my driveway at top speed.  Just as I was about to back right out into the street without regard for oncoming traffic, I stopped the car abruptly and thought to myself, Wait, he is trespassing on MY property!”. 

I put the car into drive and drove back up to the boogeyman, lowered my window just one inch and screamed at him at the top of my lungs “Get the #%*$ off my property!!!!!!”

He then proceeded to calmly ask me for directions to a street that was on the complete opposite side of town and not at all within walking distance.  He spoke as if there was nothing odd at all about his appearance or the fact that he just leaned up into my car window while I was parked in my driveway in the middle of the night!

I was so distraught that for the life of me, I couldn’t tell him if he had to go left or right so I just told him to Get the #$&* off my property or I’m calling the police!”.

He walked away and I sped off.  Pfewf!!!

As I sped off, I saw my neighbors lights go on.  I found out later that apparently I screamed so loud from inside my car, I woke up my neighbors on the opposite side of my vehicle!

To this day, I’m not sure where the boogeyman came from: The local psychiatric institution? The hospital after a bar fight? Who knows! Regardless, I am lucky that he intended to do me no harm.   Since then, I have installed motion activated lights in my driveway, a monitoring system and I have made it a habit to lock my car as soon as I enter it.

So fellow travelers, the take home message of this story is please be safe and aware of your surroundings.  You never know if the boogeyman will come for you.

Safe Travels.

Please follow and like The Travelling Saleswoman:
0

The Early Bird Gets the Sale

 

Are you in sales and experiencing difficulty pinning a client down for a meeting?  Or have you arranged a meeting with a client only for them to cancel on you last minute?

sunrise_road

Having been in sales for 10 years now, I have heard it all.  Sure sometimes your client may legitimately be too busy or have had some sort of emergency arise and they are unable to meet with you, but what do you do when you feel like your client is constantly dodging you?

Do you keep trying to get that 10am appointment only to show up and have them cancel on you last minute and waste your valuable time?

Do you ask them out to lunch and risk that their day gets too busy and they can’t escape the office? Or even worse, they invite their entire staff along and are too busy socializing amongst themselves to gain any value from your meeting!

Remember, your time is valuable too! You are in sales and time is money.  Don’t waste time scheduling appointments that are inevitably going to fall though.  Presumably you are selling a product or service that can be of value to your client.  You just need that perfect time to sit down with your client and have a mutually beneficial meeting.

How do you find that perfect time for a meeting?

Arrange a Breakfast Meeting

This is the perfect solution to dealing with a dodgy client.  Breakfast meetings are ideal for a number of reasons:

  1. No excuses! Everybody has to eat and what better way to start the day than with a great breakfast? The best part is, it won’t infringe on their busy schedule.
  2. Mutual Respect: Most people eat breakfast before going to work, so if you arrange a breakfast meeting before their regular work day you are also showing them that you value and respect their busy schedule and they will respect you in return.
  3. No distractions: It’s first thing in the morning and the day has just begun. Your client likely hasn’t gone to their office yet and thus, hasn’t had the opportunity to get distracted before your meeting.  You will likely have their undivided attention.
  4. Cereal Position Effect: Ok it’s actually called SERIAL position effect, but since I am on the topic of breakfast I thought that pun was appropriate. The serial position effect is a psychological term used to describe a human tendency to best recall the first and last items on a list.  If you apply this principle to the meetings you schedule throughout the day, you and your client will likely recall more from your meeting if you are the first or last meeting of the day.  Breakfast meetings have an advantage over dinner meetings because both of you are awake and ready to tackle the day.  Dinner meetings on the other hand, may be less productive as you may both be tired and distracted after a long day’s work.  Furthermore if alcohol is consumed during that meeting, your client will likely retain less information.
  5. Breakfast is cheap, short and sweet! At most restaurants breakfast will cost less than $10 per person, take less than an hour and provide the fuel you need to have a fabulous day! This should give you plenty of valuable face-to-face time with your client.  Just don’t forget to ask for the sale when you pick up that tab!

I’m sure most of you are thinking, “Ugh, that would mean I have to get up so much earlier!”.

Yes, yes it does my friends.  But I assure you, it will be worth it.  If it seems too tough to get up that early, then finish your meetings earlier.  For instance if you have a 7am breakfast meeting and your last appointment of the day is at 2 or 3pm, you’ve put in a full day.

My territory is so large that often when I have a breakfast meeting at 7am, that meeting may be a 2.5 hour drive from home or my hotel base.  I tell, you that is an early start!

When you are on the road that early, there are well, let’s say , many ‘oddballs’ out there.  That being said, stay tuned for Part 2 of this article: The Early Bird Meets the Boogeyman.

That’s right, I said the boogeyman.

Safe Travels my friends!

The Travelling Saleswoman

Please follow and like The Travelling Saleswoman:
0