“Do you remember where you learned to do that?”, one of my colleagues asked.
We were just cleaning up after a client on-site meeting. I was seated, she standing next to me. I was unfolding the jumbo-sized clear Ziploc® bag I use as a protective covering for my computer when it’s in by brief case. While some of my family think I’m a little neurotic about this, there’s no better protection when I, say, put a water bottle in my briefcase without completely tightening the cap (yes, it’s happened) or when the peripatetic seven year old in the airplane seat in front of me dumps his drinks between the seats into my briefcase. The Ziploc® bag (which is cheap, easy to acquire, and waterproof when zipped shut) saves a lot of heartache.
I looked up at her, puzzled. So she repeated the question: “Do you remember where you learned to do that?”
“No,” I replied, still puzzled.
“You learned it from me. We were traveling in Florida together. I was stuffing my oversized laptop into one of the jumbo Ziploc® bags and you thought it looked like a good idea. So, I gave you a spare bag and you started doing it, too. And, don’t you remember? I gave you a whole box of the jumbo bags for Christmas one year”
“YES!” I replied. “I remember the Christmas box. I did not remember that you introduced me to the idea. Can’t thank you enough. The bags have saved my computer multiple times.”
“Yes,” she replied, breaming. “It was I. And I learned it from my mother who was the queen of Ziploc® . She used every size bag they made.”
“Well, I have you both to thank, then.”
“You’re welcome. Always happy to remind you of the value I bring to the table.”
So, sure, Ziploc® bags are a relatively small thing…. except (at least twice a day) I touch the Ziploc® computer bag… and, henceforth, I’ll be reminded of my colleague (and her mother) twice a day, every day, for quite some time.
Sometimes, even in long term relationships, clients forget our good works on their behalf. Our past value disappears into fogs of time-condensed haze. Good to remind them, from time to time: “Remember when we did……, how great that was?”
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