Skip’s Lesson (Issue 437)

In which we are reminded that we own the leads we're given, no matter how bad (or good) they are. "Here," he said, handing me the torque wrench, gently pushing me on my mechanic's creeper under the car. "You're going to tighten these."

The “these,” to which he was referring were bolts that ensured that the piston connecting rods stayed connected to the crankshaft. I was on my back, looking up at my 1961 Studebaker Hawk crank case, re-assembling the engine.

My friend, mechanical guru, and rebuild leader, Skip, handed me the wrench.

“You know why I’m having you do this,” he asked, passing me the parts? “Because, when we start the engine, if the bearings burn out, I don’t want you to say, ‘it was your fault.’ Your car, your bearings, you tighten them.”

Fearing the worst, I fumbled parts into place, applied the wrench, and torqued.

So, now, this week, came a sales person complaining about the quality of appointments set for him by an “appointment setter.” “Junk,” he said. “Non-starters.”

Does it make sense for appointment setters to book appointments for sales people? In many cases, yes. Better to have sales people selling than looking for people to sell to. However, pushing “appointment setter appointments” and “data-mined leads” to sales people puts them where I would have been with Skip – blaming someone else if they didn’t work perfectly.

So, sure, some leads and some pre-set appointments waste our time. That said, Skip’s lesson applies. When we get the leads or appointments, we need to be thinking: Our territory, our leads, we sell them. No blaming Marketing if the leads don’t buy immediately. There’s no blaming in sales!

P.S. And, if Marketing is off track, then we help them refocus. We still own the leads.

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