Where Will My Next Customer Come From? – “You have to Sell, Every Day” – (Reflections on the Challenges of the Independent Worker)

The only thing you got in this world is what you can sell. And the funny thing is, you’re a salesman, and you don’t know that. — ARTHUR MILLER, Death of a Salesman (1949)

Takeaway #1 – Accept/Embrace your role in sales – (Market yourself; get out there and sell!)
(from my ten takeaways in my book synopsis of Daniel Pink’s To Sell is Human — read all ten here).


I am an independent worker.
I teach college.
I speak to business leadership teams and other groups.
I speak to nonprofit leadership teams and groups.
I give keynote speeches.
I do some training classes, especially on innovation, and on presentations skills.
I consult.

There are times when I do not have enough work to do, but much of the time I have a different problem. I have plenty of work to do; too much work to do. And when that happens, then the “disciplines” (they are disciplines) of growing my business are significantly neglected.

click on image for full view
click on image for full view

In my “circles,” (see the image), there it is on the left, staring me right in the face. I need to have a thriving “Marketing and Sales” component to what I do – you know, “Customer Acquisition.”

Where will my next new customer come from? That’s the challenge. That’s always the challenge.

And so, I need to get the word out, far and wide, as well as in very targeted ways (more “narrow” than “far and wide”).

And then, I need to actually make the sale – many more sales.

It sounds simple. But, there are times when my schedule is full that I simply cannot squeeze out the time to do that.

I’ve hired other tasks done. I work with a wonderful graphic designer who has totally upgraded the look of the handouts in my presentations.

But “sales” has been a tougher challenge. Partly because if “I” am the product, then I pretty much have to do the “selling of the product” – me.

Yes, I’ve read and heard and been reminded of the wisdom that no matter how busy you are, you need to spend some time every day in sales. I get that – intellectually. But there are days – many days – when that is just not doable.

(By the way, have you ever added up all the “if you do this a little each day” tasks that we “should” do – daily exercise; daily sales; daily blogging; daily journaling… Before you know it, you really don’t have time to do anything at all except your “you should do this every day” tasks)…

So… here is the point of this blog post. It’s an important point. It’s true for every business endeavor, and every nonprofit enterprise. It’s true for every independent worker, like me. Someone has to make sure that sales and marketing is ongoing; pretty much every day!

And if you are a true independent worker, that someone is you.  (That someone is…me).

Without products or services, you have no business.
Without customers, you have no business.

Yep, that’s about right!


To Sell is HumanMay I sell something to you? I have my book synopsis available of the terrific Daniel Pink book, To Sell is Human. It comes with a comprehensive handout, and the audio recording of my presentation (just over 15 minutes). I want to sell it to you. It’s just $9.99. Click here to buy it. (Click on the “catalogue” tab, and then type in To Sell is Human in the search box.  And, yes, we have many other book synopsis presentations available for you to purchase, and then learn from. It is a product that is worth the money!)


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