Don't Let Summer Be a Bummer1 Jul, 2005 By: Nick Warnock imageSource
Don't Let Summer Be a Bummer
Making a living as a copier
sales professional is always challenging work, but it can become even more
arduous during the lazy summer months. As much as I would like to believe that
increasing worker productivity and document work flow are on the forefront of
every organizations’ minds, the harsh reality is that during the summer the
decision makers are more likely to be planning for their vacation or enjoying
the nice weather than thinking of purchasing office equipment.
For this reason, many organizations hold off on making any key decisions until
after Labor Day. Even prospect development can be hampered because of the lax
attitude that summer can bring. Therefore, it is important to keep your eye on
the prize as you look forward to the fourth quarter and delivering your year to
I have found that the slow summer months can be a great opportunity to focus on
existing relationships that have paid dividends in the past. The nature of a
salesperson, in general, is like that of a hunter, and far too often corporate
culture can be based on a seek and kill mentality.
We must make our numbers to survive and keep the company going and too often our
relationships with our customers suffer. The experienced pro should take this
opportunity to continue along with his/her prospecting activities, but should
also plan for more time with their current customers.
The beautiful summer weather is an excellent excuse to “swing by” and see if any
decision makers are available for lunch or a cup of coffee. The likelihood is
that they will refuse, but they will not forget the generous gesture and that
face time will matter when the time comes for them to upgrade. The slow summer
months should be used to focus on the cultivation of accounts and getting to
know your customers on a more personal level.
Summer can also be a great time to update your marketing materials and pitch
book. There may have been some recent good press about a product you are selling
or your company’s performance that can be useful when you are pitching.
Your organization will often introduce new products and price breaks for the
second half of the year and you must familiarize yourself with these changes and
benefits. Time spent on this sort of research and preparation will not be wasted
when the summer is over and things pick up again.
Finally, when things are slow take advantage of the opportunity to take some
time off. There have been many times where I am reluctant to do so because I
feel that I will be missing out on an opportunity. This a sure fire way to get
burned out and not perform.
My favorite place to recharge my battery is Cabo San Lucas, Mexico on the tip of
the Baha peninsula. It is not very “touristy” and relatively inexpensive
compared to other vacation spots. Most importantly the Corona’s are cold, the
water is warm and the sun is hot!
Enjoy the summer and get ready for a strong end of the year.