Home > Ideas, Sales Techniques > Find your way in!

Find your way in!

Often all our efforts to meet the key personnel, in some of the listed accounts, are stymied by the tactics employed by the gate-keepers – Secretaries, Security Staff and Receptionists – they repulse you so easily that you either end-up being frustrated or are left wondering whether you can ever get in. 

Kimba, the cat in residence, is pregnant; the little kitten that opened its eyes to this world on June 29 last year is going to be a mom already – and the time to deliver the litter is nigh. I know this because she has been walking around our house, desperately seeking a way in. It’s wet and cold outside thanks to the monsoon and she needs a warm and safe place for her kids. Nature is fantastic! How does the instinct for survival and protection of its progeny get hard-coded into the animal’s genes? Uncanny!

I was particularly impressed by Kimba’s perseverance. Her place is on the verandah, adjacent to our drawing-room, and my brother had thoughtfully improvised a bed for it with a folded bed-sheet placed on a chair. He has even placed the rain-coat over the chair to stop the spray from reaching her and a cardboard box has been kept in readiness for the new litter.

Earlier in the day I turned my head from the computer screen towards the door on seeing a movement through the corner of my eye. Our mother-to-be stood there, heading poking out from behind the curtain of the adjacent room. She was sternly marched out of the house and the door latch fastened – nursing a bunch of kittens was not on my agenda, nor did I wish to lull myself to sleep every night by listening to their mewing from the loft in the room. So out she went. The windows were kept closed and there was additional protection from the plastic-mesh nets we had affixed on all windows to stop insects from getting in.

The nets were kept firmly in place with the help of Velcro strips – seeing her head pop out from behind the curtain I was amused; bemused, to be honest. How did she get in? Investigations revealed that the smarty had forced her way in through the only open window pane, by pushing the mesh-net out of the way. She had discovered that the net could be dislodged from the Velcro strips by constant nudging with her nose. Couple of hours after being thrown out she was inside once again via the same route. Now all the windows are firmly closed, but I still hear her plaintive mewing from outside my window at regular intervals. The instinct to survive and to protect is strong – she just won’t give up.

How strongly do you wish to reach the Top Cat in every organisation you approach?  Have you studied their system and discovered any weaknesses? How big is your instinct for success and survival?

I asked a former colleague to introduce me to his Business Head. I wished to speak with the man regarding the training solutions I had on offer to help his team succeed. Since my friend reported to the H.R. Manager, he feared that the senior man would take offence if I were permitted to meet the Head directly. The H.R. Manager wished to be in charge of such matters. I stopped pursuing the matter with this friend and contacted another friend who was the Business Head’s peer in the organisation and got an appointment. After the Head heard me out he asked the H.R. Manager to join the meeting since the subject was training. The H.R. Manager could not object and now I had the attention of both decision makers. I had found my way in.

How does one find a way in?

–          You can sweet talk the gate-keepers: It makes sense to be in their good books.

–          Ask a friend who is working there to help you; but make sure you have an alternate route

–          Get a junior member in the decision tree to introduce you to the senior: needs careful planning

–          Find a senior person from another company to refer you to the top man in the target account.

–          Use membership in clubs or professional bodies to meet senior managers in target accounts.

–          Write a blog or articles in industry magazines to get the attention of decision makers

Do your research on the person you wish to meet and chalk out the best route. It is never easy, but you can get lucky too, because someone forgot to fasten the latch!

If you really, really wish to find a way in you will … Kimba is outside my window again, she won’t give up. Will you?

  1. vijay
    June 21, 2012 at 10:43 pm

    I enjoyed reading this, it is very relevant and also challenging, very often we tend to give up too soon and find excuse to satisfy ourselves.

    • JayadevM
      June 22, 2012 at 5:36 am

      Hi Vijay

      That’s right, many of us give up too soon. Kimba is trying even now.

      It’s like that story we read often – in the race between cat and mouse the mouse wins more often – the cat is running only for food, the mouse is running for its life.

      “How passionate are you?” is the question!

      Thank you for reading.

  2. June 22, 2012 at 2:09 am

    You have woven the tale of Kimba with amazing effect in your inspirational piece.

    • JayadevM
      June 22, 2012 at 5:27 am

      Hi Umashankar

      She is extremely persevering … even this morning we had to chase her away from the window. 🙂

      Thank you for the appreciation.

  3. Jamy
    June 22, 2012 at 4:56 am

    The ardent cat lover in me fell for this piece headlong Jay! Like Vijay mentioned, extremely relevant indeed!!

    • JayadevM
      June 22, 2012 at 5:39 am

      Hey Jamy

      Thanks again … Yes! Kimba’s message is a strong on … she had to be chased away twice this morning. Won’t give up! 🙂

      We professionals need to get some of these habits ingrained in our genes .. maybe there will be plugin technology in the days ahead! 🙂

  4. jaishvats
    June 22, 2012 at 8:55 am

    Very good post . Animal world does teach us valuable lessons .

    • JayadevM
      June 22, 2012 at 10:06 am

      Hi Jaish

      Thanks for reading.. You are right. Lot to learn from them.


  5. Lijo Jose
    June 25, 2012 at 5:19 pm

    Nice one….

    • JayadevM
      June 26, 2012 at 3:29 am

      Thank you, Lijo!

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