As you saw from my previous post on the 13th, I flew down to Palm Springs (well, actually Palm Desert, but let's not split hairs) to attend a conference for my new job with Trendgraphix. I told you I would tell you more about this job in a previous post, but to save you from boredom you can just visit www.trendgraphix.com if you're interested and just know that I am the sales person for new accounts and account manager for existing 100+ accounts, as well as marketing person, webmaster, systems organizer... you get the general picture. So, back to the Desert.
The conference was for an organization called The Leading Real Estate Companies of the World (or LRE for short, since the name is so "catchy" and just rolls off your tongue). This organization is primarily a relocation referral network for independent real estate brokers across the world (but mainly in the U.S.) and, as a whole, directly competes with large national real estate companies like NRT (Coldwell Banker, ERA) and ReMax. We (Trendx) have just developed a preferred vendor partnership with this organization, so we have a foot in the door to hundreds of potential customers. So, I was there to host my own booth, network, get biz cards and generally show off our product.
In summary it went very well. Got lots of cards. Lots of people interested. Lots of follow-up to do (hence my busyness). I'm excited now because I really think I can close some deals as a result of this conference, and deals = commission. For me commission = a new house with a yard is in my future, so I'm pretty motivated.
In moving into a commission/sales position, which I have never done before, it's funny how you immediately start adopting sales person behavior. First of all, you WANT to get up and start working on moving things forward; down-time reads as "wasted time" in your brain. Second of all, you have NO patience for anyone who holds you up in that process.
For instance, I am the only sales/marketing person in this company right now, the rest of the company are programmers. Obviously, very different personalities. Nice, nice, talented people, but process oriented, cautious, ridiculously logical (to a fault). In demonstrating our product, we can't always have an internet connection on-hand, so what we've been doing is downloading entire, specific databases to my laptop so i can run offline. This is great and makes the process of demo'ing stress-free but it means that they have to take my laptop for several hours at a time to load all the information on there. My laptop is my only/primary computer and so this process hamstrings me for hours at a time. I try to get them to do it when I'm in a meeting or something but invariably it takes longer than the meeting and I'm stuck without any way of getting things done. Grrrrr.
In addition, the way they set up my laptop to connect to the LAN and internet at work, initially proved to make it a problem for me to connect to wireless networks outside of the office. So, in a moment of genius, inspired by lack-of-connection-frustration, two weeks ago I created something called a "Network Bridge" which made my laptop work everywhere. I have no idea what this is or why it worked but it did and now my laptop automatically connects to everything all the time. I LOVE IT! Of course, the tech-peeps are aghast. First of all, what made me think of doing this terrible and potentially problematic thing? Second of all, the only problem this aparently does cause is difficulty connecting to the computers from which all that offline data needs to be downloaded. So, now they want to mess with my connection settings again, to try and get it to work for the downloads. Yes, they wanted to take my computer away for several hours, so that they could mess with the connection settings that ensure I can connect to other networks, so that they can enable a download of offline databases, which takes many other hours.
As a result, yesterday, someone from Lyon's IT department (who we still work with on some things) came over and asked me if they could take my laptop for a while. I practically leaped down his throat and told him how I had lost the laptop for 3 hours the day before, how I didn't have a laptop for an hour already that day, how the download process slowed down my computer and how I JUST NEEDED TO WORK!!!! Ahem. He retreated rapidly, of course, but I felt bad.
Then I realized............ YIKES! I am a touchy, short-tempered, selfish sales person!!!!!!!!!
- I messed with things I have no idea about and in doing so, created problems for other people's work.
- Worse, I didn't care about their problems, only mine.
- I got short-tempered and irritated with someone who was just trying to do their job to help me, because I didn't have time for their solutions.
I'm working from home today. I'm going to get all my contacts into my database, plough through some busy work and then tomorrow, willingly and graciously give up my laptop to enable others to do their jobs - before it's too late.
What next? Bluetooth headset stuck to my ear 24/7? Glamor-shot photo on my business cards?