Thursday, November 30, 2006

My New Reality

It's been 2.5 months now since I made the transition from marketing to sales, and so far, despite the exponentially increased workload and almost total lack of free time, I'm still pleased with the decision.

It was admittedly a bit nerve-wracking to leave behind 13+ years of experience on one side of the fence to effectively go put my money where my mouth was, but having my first signed contract for 2007 roll off the fax yesterday -- a $329k schedule for Cover 2 in all of our print products -- eased that tension a bit. :-)

This afternoon, my ad director sent this out to our sales team in an email titled: Sales Expense Compliance

Let it load and fast forward past the first 45 seconds of credits. Someone had way too much time on their hands, but it's quite funny and spot on!

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Call me muy lame-o!

So, I'm in Boston with a free night, an expense account and my first appointment tomorrow not until 10am and a mere three blocks away from my hotel and I...

1) Walked 5 blocks over to Faneuil Hall and had dinner at a divey Mexican restaurant I could afford on my own;

2) Rushed back to my room to catch Grey's Anatomy.

I am a disgrace to the sales profession!

Earlier in the day, I got lost several times while navigating via Hertz' NeverLost GPS, which tends to not work well when it can't pick up its signal, like when you're underground, or say, when you're driving through parts of Boston that happen to be -- wait for it -- underground. The name, "NeverLost", is a smart bit of literal marketing, as you will never truly get lost while using it, but you will often find yourself backtracking for missed turns, or worse, driving a few miles further out of your way while it recalculates your route when its directions don't account for detours.

Fun times!

All three appointments were productive, both for potential business and for my own comfort level with the job. I still have days, many of them, when I question my decision to move over to sales, so much of it hinging on a part of my personality that takes a lot of effort to bring to the fore. Contrary to popular belief, I'm not really a people person; generally speaking, I prefer alone time to hanging out with other people. Unless there's alcohol involved, in which case, it's the exact opposite.

And yet, with a rather lively bar right downstairs, here I am sitting in my hotel room, just having finished watching Grey's Anatomy, blogging about nothing.

C'est la vie.

Two more appointments tomorrow, a bunch of proposals to put together before Thanksgiving, and the slowly growing sense that this job is going to work out all right. I think...


Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Life of a Salesman and other stuff

Heading up to Boston tomorrow (8am flight!) for five meetings in two days, pitching the two magazines that really attracted me to the position in the first place. (There's five I sell for altogether, but three of them are pretty well established and don't have as much new ground to break.) Two existing clients, one newish client (my first sale) and two brand-spanking new ones. If I can pull some solid business from at least two of them for 2007, it will be a successful trip, worth the stress and inconvenience being away from home during the week causes.

Did I mention the 8am flight? How about not being able to check in to my hotel before my first appointment, so being fully suited up for my 6am car service?

Getting the appointments was tough thanks to conflicting schedules and the distances between most of my prospects up there, and getting anyone out for dinner proved impossible. Only one of my appointments is actually in Boston, the rest in the suburbs as far away as 30 miles west. I suspect Jet Blue, Hertz, NeverLost and I are going to become well acquainted over the next several months. I'm really tempted to try and score a Mustang, and if someone rented Mini Coopers, I'd be all over that!

In other life news, Monday before last I randomly stopped in at 13 after a couple of drinks with the guys from PCS and had a blast, ending up hosting the second half of the open mic, covering Roger's "Blue Sex Prodigy" and kicking an oldie of my own, "Running Bases", Taylor Mali-style, reading it off of my Blackberry. It's a weird feeling, missing something but knowing you can never really go back to it; sort of like a recovering alcoholic who sneaks a sip now and then.

My new favorite song:

Check them out on MySpace: