You’re Just a Big BABY

So allow me a moment to apologize for my absence, but spare you the details of WHY I have been absent. Suffice it to say I spend a lot of time with little people, which caused me to reflect on the similarities between babies and big people.

1. If there’s something wrong, the remedy is almost always very simple. With babies, they are either hungry, dirty or tired. So you feed them, change their diapers, or put them down for a nap. With salespeople, if sales are down, the same rule of simplicity usually applies. You either need to increase the number of prospects in your pipeline, adjust WHO you are calling on, adjust WHAT you are saying (needs to be something other than, “I sell printing”) or just plain old work harder. Stop goofing off on Facebook. Don’t play golf on a Friday afternoon. Perks are for people who are beating quota. If you’re not meeting and exceeding your goals, you need to buckle down and make some changes. Don’t even get me started on goals. If you don’t have a goal, how do you know you’ve succeeded?

2. SMILE. If babies are feeling lonely, scared or bored, having someone smile at them always makes them feel better. Same goes for you and your clients and prospects. Smile when you pick up the phone to make calls. And please PLEASE ALWAYS smile when you go visit people. If you carry yourself around like the sky is falling, no one will want to see you, much less enter into a business relationship with you.

3. When all else fails, change the environment. When babies are upset, sometimes all it takes is a walk, a bath or a move to another room. Same goes for you. If you have lost you mojo, take a walk. If you just lost a big bid, take a deep breath and go into your bosses office for a postmortem to discuss what went wrong, what you should do next time, and what, if anything, can be done to save the day.

Now working as a consultant, Kelly sold digital printing for 15 years so she understands the challenges, frustrations and pitfalls of building a successful sales practice. Her mission is to help printers of all sizes sell more stuff. Kelly's areas of focus include client recovery, retention and acquisition, and marketing communications projects.
Kelly graduated from the University of Michigan with a degree in Political Science and, among other notable accomplishments, co-founded the Windy City Rollers, a professional women's roller derby league.

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  • Melissa Sienicki

    Another wonderful read as always, Kelly, and I wholeheartedly agree with #4. I start each day by immersing myself in print blogs/print news sources. I learn so much and am able to take that knowledge and use it in everything from campaign e-mails to calls with customers.

  • Bill Farquharson

    Other than your driving skills (ahem!), you are my idol, Kelly! Great to dine with you yesterday and hear about your parenting adventures and the road ahead.