This should go without saying, but we can all fall into the trap of taking our frustrations out on other people. This can happen when we’ve just had a contentious exchange with someone or maybe just the proverbial “bad day.” However, taking it out on the next person you meet is inadvisable to say the least.
I remember the story I once heard about a salesman – but it could be you or me. The salesman had secured a meeting with a prospect that represented huge potential sales for his company. He flew into the city the afternoon before the meeting and with some time to kill, decided to buy his wife some perfume as a gift. He went into a department store and was helped by a young girl who was in her first day on the job. The girl’s experience showed through and she had difficulty helping the salesman complete his purchase. Frustrated with the difficulty she was having, the salesman lashed out at the young lady reducing her to tears. He angrily walked out of the store without completing his purchase.
The next day the meeting with the CEO went very well. The parties agreed to a follow up meeting to execute a contract between the companies. The CEO told the salesman that he was meeting his daughter for dinner that evening to celebrate her 18th birthday. You know where this is going don’t you?
When the salesman arrived at the restaurant, the CEO was seated with his daughter at the reserved table. Lo and behold, the CEO’s daughter was the same young lady the salesman had mistreated so badly in the department store the previous day. Needless to say, the rest of the story does not go well for the salesman. The young girl stormed out of the restaurant and after a quick dinner the two men retired for the evening.
Back in his office the next day, the salesman received a call from the CEO. His message was simply that the meeting was cancelled and the two companies would not be doing business together after all. His inability to control his emotions and respect others had killed a major sale.
So what is the lesson of this story? Everyone is somebody’s special somebody! Or as my mother used to sermon me, “If you can’t say something nice about someone, don’t say anything at all.”
I think what my mother was really trying to teach me is that life is much more fun for everyone when we consistently treat others with respect – whether it’s our customer or someone we meet on the street. Wouldn’t you agree?
Do you have questions for us? Contact either Mark Ellsworth or Matt Heemstra at (712) 324-4614.