When I Got Hit In The Face - Leadership SHIFT Tip

In my first month of professional sales, I won salesperson of the month. I did nothing to earn it, but they gave me the plaque anyway.

In was June 1990 when I started selling copiers and facsimiles in D.C. I was a wet behind the ears, twenty-two-year-old making a $1,000 per month plus commissions and rockin’ my best $99 suit from Jos. A. Bank.

Before starting, my manager had been working a big account in my territory and the deal closed during the last week of June. Hello, commission city. It was the biggest check I had ever received. Happy hour drinks at Ha’ Penny Lion were on me.

“Everyone has a game plan until they get punched in the face.”
- Mike Tyson

Then I got punched in the face. No, not at happy hour — it was in my territory. As I started my second month, I learned that my prospects were already experiencing the 1990 recession. I finished the month below quota, dejected, and “in the hole” to my company.

It was time for a new game plan and the humility to know that everyone can crush it in a good economy or when your boss closes a deal for you.

If you’ve been a pro for a while, I bet you have felt a market shift punch or two. But you are resilient. You keep pedaling and working on the skills that will keep you relevant tomorrow.

Because you have the experience to know that a game plan that doesn’t account for getting punched in the face isn’t much of a game plan. Today, do some mentoring and share your wisdom. It’s a gift that might just help someone earn a plaque one day.

Have fun storming the castle.

p.s., You may have heard about weight loss or fitness challenges, but I bet you’ve never done a conversation challenge. Join me for the first free 5-day Conversation Challenge during the first week of April. It’s a challenge that will change everything because everything begins with a conversation. I will share the details next week.