When things don’t go your way

Dec 12, 2016

I’ve been reminded of the importance of facing obstacles head on. A phone call with a client on Friday where I received some bad news. A deal we had agreed to a month ago was now off the table. Not the entire deal, just many of the things we agreed to were being asked to be taken out. I wasn’t so much disappointed in the newly proposed structure, it was more of the timing of the conversation. You see, the deal was supposed to be signed Friday. There was no indication that it wouldn’t be until mid-week last week when initial rumblings started to happen. Deals aren’t supposed to go down that way – 17 yrs in the business – and seeing a lot of interesting things, but there was no indication a month ago (when terms were agreed to) that this would happen. Lesson learned for me for sure.

In sales there’s an adage that the deal is never closed until the ink is dry (aka – the contract is signed). I’ve learned to be careful with communicating out any type of closed deal for this reason. I’m glad I didn’t hear.

So, the constructs of the deal have changed…frankly, I was super pissed off about the way this went down Friday. I was mad at the client for how it went down. After reflecting on, praying about, and trying to construct how we go from here, I’ve realized that, ultimately, I have to look at myself and the work I’ve done to bring this home.

You see, after much reflection, and some of the info I received Friday, I realized that we dropped the ball on a couple things. Some were very small, some a little bigger. It’s software, it’s business – balls are going to drop. We won’t be 100% everyday. But it’s a great reminder….that we need to keep striving to be 100%. Whether it’s getting things delivered on time or presenting data to a client – it’s important to take pride in your work – to do everything you can do to deliver huge value.

Many times it’s not the one thing that drops that causes the issues, but it’s the ten small things over the course of a couple years that aren’t 100%, that add up to decisions like we had Friday.

We’ll do better, we have no choice. I’m about to go into a meeting to salvage the deal today. We’ll still do business, just the constructs have changed. The good news is that I learned that we are lacking trust at the client. Regardless of my thoughts before Friday, that’s the world we’re in today. We need to reset….our team needs to buckle down…and deliver what we say we’re going to do….it’s a striving for greatness….a relentless pursuit of delivering on everything we set out. It’s not easy….it takes discipline, hard work, consistency, perseverance….probably most of all – looking at ourselves in the mirror and saying – we’re going to do our best today.

Stuff happens. The question is, when obstacles arise, are you going to make excuses or are you going to pick up wherever you are and make lemonade out of lemons.

Monday…here we go…


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