You don’t have to sell for decades in the security industry to experience the pain of the passing of a close connection.
We travel to shows and meet hundreds of people. We attend industry events and relationships form, paths cross, and common interests rise to the surface.
Before you know it, you arrange joint sales calls, do coordinated demos, and begin to build business together.
Separated by time zones, states, and distance you still realize you can depend on one another. You find that trust is established, that professionalism exists, and that each other’s word is solid and unwavering.
You don’t talk weekly, and even a month or so can pass, yet you still know you’ll connect again, sell together again, have lunch again. Until you don’t.
It happens that quick. Asking another contact about an order and an email comes back. “Sorry to let you know that xxxxx passed away two days ago. He wasn’t ill and they think it may have been a heart attack.”
Suddenly the order, all the other business opportunities, the sales, and future plans have no meaning. A friend and business professional has passed. THAT is what matters.
For me, this is the passing of the third really solid sales professional with whom I was close, in as many years. Really talented, genuine sales professionals are a rarity in our industry. Make no mistake, they were good solid people at their core–their sales abilities grew from that foundation.
Why am I writing about this? I suppose it’s my way of pausing, reflecting, and remembering. You see, in the business world, when you work with distant professionals, it is way too easy for us to hear of one of those connections passing and then–in the blink of an eye–we are off to a staff meeting, walking into a prospect’s office to do a demo, or getting a quote out to a budding customer.
True, work continues. I get that. Maybe THAT is the message. After all, I met these fine people because of our shared work. I am thankful for that, and for them.
They are not forgotten. And I realize I can only meet more amazing connections like this by pressing on. So, press on I will.