Words I Understand

On my way home from work today, my best friend Shane called to just check in on me. He rocks 150%. I told him how I was feeling, and tried to explain it further but I just couldn’t. He finally stopped me (and thank God because even I was starting to get confused) and said that I needed to just listen for a second. He hasn’t really been wrong yet, so I listened.

Shane works in sales too, but for an NHL team. We met our freshman year at USC when I needed a big strong dude to help me move my fridge (damsel in distress ya heard). Turns out we were both super sarcastic northerners that were here to study business. We just clicked. So here we are almost four years later, still best friends. I can usually count on him when I need a proverbial slap in the face, because hes an aggresive northerner too. He’s seen me fall over drunk almost as many times as he’s seen me cry. That’s part of why he’s such a good friend, as he always is there to help no matter the circumstances. So of course when I told him everything that had happened and how I felt and how confused I was and basically the biggest word vomit ever, concerned friend mode went into full effect. He gets me, so I knew him of all people would be able to rationalize this for me somehow.

Like I said, we both work in sales. It’s a language all it’s own that we both are fluent in. So he told me a little story, which spiraled into some seriously thought provoking conversation. So, let’s start with that story.

“So I spend my days trying to snag some new season ticket holders. I call people. Sometimes it works on the first call, and that’s it. Some people have blocked my numbers. Whatever. But there was this one prospective client.. I called fifteen times. Most people would tell me that I was harassing him at that point. But until the guy told me “No”, there was no way in hell I was going to give up. So I kept calling. And honestly, even I questioned my sanity some of the times. I mean really.. fifteen times? It was pushing overboard, but again, anything other than a rejection is at least a maybe. The sixteenth call, I finally got the guy on the phone. This was my chance, and I wasn’t going to blow it. He knew the value of what I was trying to sell, but I had to reinforce it. The biggest sale of my career later, I have a new happy client, my hard work paid off, and the satisfaction was immense. So you can’t give up. What if that sixteenth call is the call that changes things?”

The dude isn’t wrong. Which I’ll admit sometimes get’s annoying like dang dude are you ever inaccurate? But this time, I was glad that he was spot on. So, what else did this fount of wisdom have to say?

We talked about how as a sales woman, I should be the queen of hustle. I convince people all day, every day, that they need something that I provide. Not just need it, but they cannot run their business about it. I promote the value, I learn the clients budget, location, the whole nine. I analyze businesses all damn day. But I cannot seem to analyze situations with guys well enough to yield any positive results.

“It stresses me out! I know you can do this. I know you speak sales, that you’re a shark. You wouldn’t be doing this if that wasn’t the case. The Abby I know, the freshman year four years ago happy go lucky Abby, wouldn’t settle to get hustled like this. You need to hustle these dudes before they hustle you. Put it this way. If a client came up to you and asked for a free product because they might be interested in purchasing it in the future, would you just give it to them? Absolutely not. You would (and don’t try to deny this) tell them to go to hell. You are selling products that aren’t even yours at a 20% markup. But when it comes to selling yourself, you are showing a low percieved value. Why don’t you think you’re worth more? You don’t know these dude’s willingness to pay. When someone buys something from you, they don’t get immediate gratification. It takes 6 weeks to build, and another 2 weeks to implement. Run yourself like a business. I don’t mean be a hooker. But know your worth. You know in sales that you have to hustle someone so you don’t get hustled. Apply that to your life. You’re better than what you’ve settled for in the last year.”

You’re not going to catch me being a player-ette (if that’s even a word but I know all of y’all are catching my drift with that), but it’s not going to be easy to get me in your life. I gotta look out for number one. Know yaself know ya worth, as Drake would say. People keep telling me to enjoy this time alone; that I’ll only be able to pee in peace for so long, that this is the time to find myself. I have a pretty good idea of who I am, but maybe not necessarily who I want.





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