Close Shave (Issue 656)

In which we are reminded to take our time, patiently prepare and warm our relationships and prospects, before we jump in to anything resembling sales.

I cut my chin, shaving, a few days ago. Right in the middle, at the “mental protuberance” (i.e.  bump of bone at front of jaw)… and, yeah, I’d say the cut was, pretty much, mental…

I had been in a hurry, eager to launch the day, running a bit behind schedule, so I slapped on the “this color does not occur in nature”  green gel I use to lubricate my face, grasped my weeks old triple-blade razor, and  with fast, ‘let’s get this over with’ strokes, sliced stubble.  Right cheek…. Left cheek…. Upper lip…. Chin up, stretch the neck… under the jaw and then, with a too-hard-pressed down stroke, I snagged a chunk of chin.

Words said, facial tissue applied, naught to do but wait for the bleeding to stop so I could put on my shirt and get out the door.

Feeling a surge of kill-some-time curiosity,  I pulled out my phone and, after a few taps, began reading “Shaving Tips from Moroccan Street Shavers” (No, I’m not kidding, it’s here.) which recommends patient pre-shave application of heat and moisture, application of shaving paste, a full three minutes of lathering up with shaving brush, short razor strokes first with the grain and then against, post-shaving application of antiseptic and moisturizer, and concludes with:

“If there’s a single tip to take from Moroccan street shavers, it would be this: Invest in the proper shaving  equipment and use the proper techniques. If you can’t devote at least 15 minutes of your time to shaving, I recommend postponing the job until you can…”

Really??????  I’d be shaving once a month.

Then, looking at my still bleeding chin, I thought, “And yet, equally good advice for developing accounts or leading sales calls:  Generous application of moist heat to warm them;  patient ‘lathering them up’ with soft soap and a fine brush;  then gentle pulling with short strokes, first with the grain (easy issues or questions), then against (challenging issues or questions); wrapped up with a little antiseptic and soothing moisturizer.”

A ritual of relationship preparation and development to which, if we can’t devote the time,  maybe we should postpone the job until we can.

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