This is a short story about Dewey the Great Producer. This is a 3-Part story with 3 different endings and 3 different lessons. Each day will be a new ending and a different lesson so stay tuned!
Part #2: The Story
Dewey was a loyal and devoted company man who was a great sales producer. He worked hard, his customers loved him, and he always exceeded his sales goals … so they made him a sales leader. When they announced his promotion at the annual sales conference no one was surprised, everyone knew Dewey would be a great leader. Why? Because he was a great producer, he always hit his numbers, and everyone loved him!
6 months into his new position after the newness of the promotion wore off Dewey started to wonder if he’d made a mistake. His salespeople didn’t sell like he did, they didn’t talk to their customers the way he did, they certainly didn’t think like he did, and no matter how many times he told them what to say and how to say it … they never did it quite right!
So being a person who always grabbed the bull by the horns when it came time to get things done, he created Dewey’s 10 Golden Rules for Selling. For the next few weeks he drilled these rules into his people’s heads. And his people started changing … for a little while. 6 weeks later he saw that everyone was reverting to their old habits. So being a person who always grabbed the bull by the horns when it came time to get things done he came up with a bigger and better list, Dewey’s Mandatory 25 Golden Rules for Selling and this time he told his people that if they didn’t want to follow the rules they should probably find another place to work because things needed to change!
Well things did change … his top producer left because she felt like she couldn’t be herself, she was being forced to sell like Dewey. None of his people wanted to take him on sales calls because he stepped all over them during the sales process in an attempt to “close the deal” and walk out with the order in hishand. His boss started asking him why the success he had as an individual producer wasn’t translating into sales success for his entire team. Even his wife started telling him that he just wasn’t much fun to be around anymore and asked him to stop being so hard on the kids. Things were changing alright … just not how he had imagined when he first took his new position as a sales leader.
Ending #2: Another Version
Dewey was frustrated to say the least, he decided that he was happier being a producer far more than being a leader. He missed his customers and he missed the freedom to make things happen the way he wanted them to. It was difficult to try to get folks to follow him, they just didn’t listen.
He loved working for his company he just knew he wanted things to be the way they used to be … before the promotion. So he went and spoke to his manager and laid his cards on the table not sure of what would happen or whether he would be let go of or not. Sometimes you just have to be willing to speak the truth and let the cards fall where they may. “Funny thing you’re in here Dewey, I was thinking we needed to talk, you’re obviously not happy, how can we make it better, what do you need?” his boss took the words right out of his mouth. “I’d like my old job back, I was happier selling and I felt like I was winning, getting results, and doing what I do best!”
So Dewey went back into sales. He was more clear about his purpose and what he he was put on this earth to do than ever before! He didn’t need the title of Manager, VP, or anything else after his name, he just wanted to sell. Things got better at home as well and his wife and kids loved being with him … again!
Morale of the Story #2: If you have people in your organization that were great producers but aren’t quite having the success either of you had hoped for as a leader, maybe it’s time to lay the cards on the table and talk about what’s really going on!