We all have our passions, and as you probably know by now, one of mine is cars and motorcycles. This weekend, I had a chance to indulge that passion by showing my ’96 Chevy Impala SS at the Kansas City World of Wheels. I’ve been going to the WoW since I was 10, and this was the first year I’d shown a car (I showed my Harley the previous two years). It was a great experience, and as it turned out, the judges liked my Impala – I got second in my class.
What I’ve discovered, though, is that even during a ‘hobby’ weekend, I’m still the Sales Navigator. I had a moment where my instincts came out, and therein is a sales lesson.
These shows are three days long; counting setup, we occupy the better part of Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. It’s a long show and exhausting. Judging takes place on Friday and class awards are presented on Saturday. On Sunday, a lot of people look a little like zombies. Well, on Sunday at about 1 PM, I noticed that the roof and hood of my Impala were dusty – and on a black car, that’s pretty noticeable.
So, I got out my Meguiar’s Quick Detailer and a towel and started cleaning the dust off. As I did, a guy walked by, complimented me on the car, and said that he had a truck that was displayed a few spots away. He asked, “I have to ask you something. It’s Sunday. Why are you still polishing your car?”
I said, “Well, the people who are here today paid just as much as the people who came yesterday, and they deserve our best effort.” He got a funny look on his face and said, “You know, you’re right.” A few minutes later, I looked over and saw him polishing his truck. Obviously, he took my point to heart.
How often do we allow ourselves to experience a letdown in our careers? Probably quite a bit.
At 4 P.M., do you stop making calls and head for Happy Hour, or do you power through and keep selling until 5?
Partway through the month, when your numbers are made, do you relax and go play golf – or do you work to get a head start on the next month?
When working a trade show, do you have the same intensity on the last day as you did on the first?
Do you keep asking your current customers good and new questions, or do you ease up and do the old “P.R. visits?”
Like the people who paid to attend the car show, the potential value of your time and your customers’ time doesn’t change. What changes is your approach to maximizing that time.
So, yes. Polish the car on Sunday. It’s worth the effort, as my new friend decided.