I should have left GKIC (the company founded by Dan Kennedy and sold to a private equity firm) at least a year earlier.
They had fired the previous president and hired their third person to run the show. Revenue declined, we lost members, and event attendance dwindled to an embarrassing level. To top it off, I was working harder than ever before.
The new CEO was not a fan of direct-response marketing. He also didn’t like to put personality in our emails, whether the emails came from the ones I wrote in Dan Kennedy’s name or me.
The woman he brought in to run the flagship newsletter wanted it to look even more corporate and professional. At a board meeting, she said, “For a newsletter that purports to be no B.S., Dan Kennedy writes a lot of B.S.” I lost it when she said that, and the board members, who flew in from all over the country, sat in stunned silence as I went off on her with a vengeance. It was not one of my finest moments, but everything I said was true. My tirade solidified that I was not cut out for corporate life.
The three-year contract I signed was up for renewal, and negotiations began. I wanted more guaranteed DEEnero, and considering that the products, promotions, launches, and my one-to-many selling skills accounted for a substantial portion of the overall revenue, I believed I earned it.
I proposed keeping the same salary and commission structure, provided I could run my non-competing business on the side. They rejected that offer. Instead, the CEO wanted to lower my salary and increase my commissions. That would be fine, other than event attendance had hit rock bottom, and he wanted less selling at events or online. I kid you not.
(Side story: I sold $540,000 of a new product in 45 minutes at one of the still-large events. Home run, right? Not according to the president, because a handful of people gave negative feedback about me selling too hard on the survey. Sigh.)
Kalia had encouraged me to quit for many months. She knew I was miserable. She was also wise enough to know that I could make more DEEnero on my own. Then, one day, I decided that was it and sent my resignation letter.
The truth is the CEO, and his minions wanted me out. I wasn’t a “team player” and wouldn’t shut up and agree to strategies that I knew didn’t work and were the complete opposite of what we taught our members to do.
No matter how big your company gets, keeping your entrepreneurial mindset is mission-critical. Remember that results rule. It doesn’t matter if you, your spouse, your employees, or your dog doesn’t like your marketing. If it works, keep doing it.
And always remember, your main jobs are as a marketer and salesperson of your service.
Kick butt, make mucho DEEnero!
Dave “Adios to corporate life” Dee
P.S. I’m going to work with a handful of private clients one on one during the first quarter of the year. Would you like to work with me? Reply to this email with “private client info, please,” and I’ll send you details. 🙂
Dave Dee is the author of the new book, “Sales Stampede” that shows you how to create and deliver signature presentations from the stage or via webinars that sell your consultations, products, or services like magic. For more information and to grab your copy, CLICK HERE now.