Bob, thanks for coming in. Grab a seat. Sit down. Do you want a cup of water? Listen, I know you only have about 15 minutes, so if you don’t mind, I’m going to do most of the talking. If you like what you hear, then let’s set up another time to have a real two-way conversation.
Well, I took a look at your resume, and it’s great. You read and write Hebrew and Greek, we can really use that. The Founder wasn’t really into documentation, and we really need someone who could help us get some of his speeches down in writing. We’ve got one guy, Mark, whose just about ready to finish up something, and I hear another guy, Matthew is planning on doing some kind of revision.
I see you were referred by Paul? Did you know him when he was a cop? Yeah? I know he really has changed a lot since then. Seems a few years back, our Founder’s Son came down to recruit Paul into the organization. They had a brief talk, and Paul joined up. Changed his name and everything. We really had a lot of doubts about Paul at first, but he’s been one of our top performers, really working hard to penetrate new territiories and develop new markets for us. He’s started a number of User Groups, and he’s written some pretty good white papers for us too. We’re planning on adding Paul’s white papers to our user’s manual.
The first thing I want to tell you is that we are selling the perfect product. Everybody needs it, millions have been asking for it, and there are millions out there who need it, but don’t even know that they do. We really need to get out and push the messaging.
Let me tell you a little about ourselves. We’re an established start-up. We’ve been in business for about 5 years now. Our Founder’s Son started this territory, ran it for about three years, and then returned to Corporate. He’s still actively involved with us, in fact I recommend that you talk with him as much as you can. I’ve heard one of the things he’s working on now is a Sales Club for our top performers, and it’s going to be so incredible, that once you’re there, you’re never going to want to leave.
We had some independent agents do a little bit of publicity for us prior to starting the territory, but by in large, people weren’t getting the messaging. Corporate was getting very concerned about this. If we maintained the status quo, this territory would have just folded to the competition. So the Founder sent his Son down to see if we could change things for the better.
Immediately, the competition tried to do a friendly takeover, and was in discussions with the Founder’s Son. He turned them down, and went out and hired 12 inexperienced salespeople, and made them regional managers. We had some turnover, one of the regional managers later left after he leaked some priviledged information.
The regional managers did a pretty good job with the Founder’s Son’s help. The Son is a amazing public speaker, and he could do some amazing demos. He gave the ability to demo to the RM’s but to be honest with you, sometimes they just lacked the necessary confidence to to the demos as good as the Son. They are starting to get stronger with more experience and faith.
We brought on some more people, but now we are thinking about developing a multi-level marketing program. We’ve just found that our customers make the best salespeople.
I want to be straight with you. There are some bad things about this opportunity. . We have some major competition in our marketplace. We don’t hold marketshare right now. The market leader is a company called Darkside, Inc. They have some real slick marketing materials, and they are extremely aggressive in the market. They will say anything to make a sale. They don’t require a lot of committment, but once a customer has signed up, it can be very difficult to leave, even though Darkside has a very poor product satisfaction rating. The salespeople at Darkside just keep promising and promising, and their customers hope they deliver. Unfortunately, Darkside never delivers.
We did start a competitive trade-in program against Darkside about 20 years ago, and while we are not getting the response we’d like, we are extremely delighted even when we can get just one person to make the transistion. And I’ve never seen a customer who’s used our product correctly feel disappointed after coming from Darkside.
The converse is also true. Nothing makes us more upset than losing a customer to Darkside. Darkside promises everything to the customer, but when they sign up, they will find that the most important things are missing.
Also, there will be a lot of travel. The size of the territory is tremendous. You’ll be living on the road much of the time. We don’t have any cars or planes available at this time; you’ll be limited to foot travel and the occassional donkey ride. You can expense your sandels though, within reason.
We don’t have a lot in the way of technology either. No cell phones, no powerpoints, no laptops, no TV or radio marketing. We are expecting these things in future budgets, but right now, you’re going to have to rely on word of mouth, getting out in the field and pressing the flesh. The one technology that we do have is instant messaging with the Son and the Founder. If you need Him, He’s always available.
Ok, I’ve been beating around the bush. We’ve got a problem with regulations in some of the territories in which we operate. I’m sorry to say this, but our product has been determined to be illegal by the authorities in those territories. In some places, allthough we aren’t illegal, we’ve met such a hostile reaction from the locals, that we might as well be illicit. Some of reps and customers have been arrested, jailed, and even killed. You really need to consider the possibility of this happening to you and your people before you accept the position.
We’re not backing away. We feel that our product is so important, that we have to bring it out to the field, even if local governments feel differently. If we can penetrate some of the markets in these areas, we could overturn these laws barring our service.
You won’t be alone managing. After He left, the Son sent down one of His assistants to work in the field. You really should take advantage of this resource if you take the position. I’ve been told that working with the Assistant is like working with the Son himself. This assistant is very efficient, He seems to be working everywhere at the same time.
I know I’ve given you a lot to think about. Go home, talk it over with your wife, and get back to me. Here’s some of the Founder’s speeches to look at while your making the decision. We are going to add these to the User’s Manual. My personal favorite is the one he did at the Mountain some time back.