DeWese--No Holding Back On Sales Slackers
Actually, the only thing Norm ever blew was his nose. The truth is that Norman suffered from asthma in high school and was team assistant trainer in charge of taping ankles. He managed to keep the job until the coach fired him for failing to bring any tape to a road game and six starters sprained their ankles in the first quarter. After graduating from high school, Norman attended a community college for one semester.
Norm tells his bar mates that he got the nickname Stormin' because he set a national high school record for making 158 unassisted tackles in one season. He adds, "The name stuck while I was fighting in Desert Storm where I single-handedly captured 200 Iranians. Some nights it's 300 Iraqis. None of the regulars at the bar can remember what happened the night before, and are a little blurry on current events, so no one ever challenges Norman when the story changes.
With Stormin', Sales Sag
Now, by day, Norm sells printing for his uncle, Horace Acherwald, the owner of Acherwald Printing & Litho. The plant is located exactly 123.7 miles from Norman's apartment. He is supposed to cover the Philadelphia market.
Norman's mother, Jean, begged her brother, Horace, to give Norman a chance and hire him when the previous Philadelphia rep quit. Horace, an old softy, acceded to his sister and "trained" Norman by letting him work in different departments for six weeks. He then advanced Norman the money to move to Philadelphia, leased him a new Taurus, bought him a fax machine and a cell phone, and gave him three longstanding accounts to service.
After three years, Acherwald's Philadelphia sales have dwindled from more than $500,000 to $280,000. Norman has become a master of creative writing for the call reports that he dutifully faxes to the plant every Saturday. Norman has found seven to eight prospects that regularly fax him RFQs that Norman writes up and faxes to the plant for estimates. Occasionally, he lucks out, has the lowest price and is awarded a job.