Most months at about this time I am glad that I no longer work in sales.
Don’t get me wrong – I got a lot out of my time in sales, some of it in cash. I mastered the gentle art of unobtrusive questioning. I learned how to steer a conversation without it being obvious. I acquired the knack of instant-empathy and the ability to manage small-talk with someone who doesn’t do small-talk. I understood the precise ways in which a why-question will take you in a different direction than a how-question.
In many respects, I learned how many beans make five.
But on too many months at about this time a slow strand of tension would start to wind its way around the base of my stomach, tightening every time I dated a cheque, or arranged a meeting, or completed a front-sheet to send a fax. Too many times, there’d still be too much target at the end of the month.
So now, almost a decade later, I look at my watch, look at a calendar, or post a blog, and find myself thinking woohoo, its the 19th, and I don’t have to think about quotas.
It’s good when you still feel smug about a decision 8 years on.
Wouldn’t you agree?