“How did I get here?”
My sales manager and I were on the interstate on the way to visit a prospect who he’d been trying to close for a long, long time.
I stared down the road, knowing it was an exercise in futility. This prospect was a price-driven buyer, and we simply couldn’t compete with the low-ball offers they got from our competitors.
But yet we persisted, because, well, when you’re in sales that’s what you do.
Numbers have to be hit. Targets achieved.
My sales manager said something about sales numbers and it was unsettling. It was yet another threat against my livelihood and my sense of security.
I didn’t say anything in response, I just bit my tongue while that feeling of frustration and fear occupied my mind.
I’d had enough. His words were the proverbial straw that broke the camel’s back. I was done. That day I knew my career in sales was over.
You know that feeling you get when you’ve just had enough and you can’t go one step further? Yep – that’s the feeling I had.
Too many things I couldn’t control. Too many ridiculous expectations from those who only cared about hitting targets. Too much pressure.
We visited the prospect, and just as suspected, despite our best efforts and the best pricing we could offer, they weren’t going to close.
We got back in the car and hit the road. We got back on the interstate to head back to Tallahassee with little to no discussion. If he was talking, I didn’t hear him. It was just silence. I drove, lost in thought about what my next steps were going to be, because I knew I was done.
The panic of what was going to happen next set in. I had a daughter who wasn’t even a year old. I spent that ride home figuring out how I ended up here: so far from where I wanted to be, so far from doing work that was creative, that mattered, and so unbelievably miserable.
“How did I end up here?” I thought.