Edgy Conversations: Stop doing stupid stuff just because your boss suggests it


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A senior sales executive friend reached out me a few weeks ago asking for help transitioning between different senior sales positions. He was a former CEO who got bought out by a big company and was now working to group a different division.

It was a great conversation.

My edgy, creative juices started flowing and I go into my weird (and slightly obsessive) state of revenue explosion mastery. You know what I’m talking about. Every once in while things start clicking and you really feel in control of a wiz-bang solution.

And then between discussion and execution, the bottom fell out.

I called back about two weeks after our original discussion and got the rest of the story.  This exec (who, by the way, is not your average, ordinary  biz dev floozy) started to put together a few pieces of execution hours after our discussion.  He wrapped his head around the task and then start tasking out “next steps”.

The next morning in a meeting, his CEO basically shut him down.   He told him to “pick up the phone and dial for dollars – to get serious about sales”.  And so this senior exec decided to do just that — shelve a plan for explosive revenue growth in exchange for keeping a clueless (sorry….) boss happy.

Am I being too harsh?

I certainly don’t know all sides of the story, but what I heard was troubling, because it is something that I continue to hear quite a bit of.  Somehow we equate activity to results — and that’s just not smart.  What about efficiency?  What about effectiveness?

Why am I getting edgy about this type of stuff?

Because it is destroying your sales potential.  You are letting peer pressure keep you from what really works.

Take responsibility for you own success:

  1. Explain to your boss the reason for the plan…
  2. Outline the steps you are taking…
  3. Define the amazing result that you are expecting…
  4. Fight to be able to execute…

Last, but not least, if you can’t get a time line to execute, you need to LEAVE.  Run for the door!  As fast as possible.

And then, pick up your phone and call me (202-730-9730) at the Edgy Empire Headquarters and I will personally find you a new home. (I’m not joking….)


We must never, ever sacrifice a dream for the illusion of effort.

We are not pacifists.  We are highly effective executioners.

By the way, many thanks to my wonderful friend, Cindy King, in Paris who suggested that I start this weekly series. Cindy is a masterful international marketing specialist and opened my eyes to how I can be a “better Edgy Dan“…

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Republished with author's permission from original post.

Dan Waldschmidt
Speaker, author, strategist, Dan Waldschmidt is a conversation changer. Dan and his team help people arrive at business-changing breakthrough ideas by moving past outdated conventional wisdom, social peer pressure, and the selfish behaviors that stop them from being high performers. The Wall Street Journal calls his blog, Edge of Explosion, one of the Top 7 blogs sales blogs anywhere on the internet and hundreds of his articles on unconventional sales tactics have been published.


  1. Dan: I enjoyed reading this. Your methodical approach to explain ideas to the boss makes sense, but reminds me why it’s sometimes better to go even straighter to the jugular. A book, The House on Garibaldi Street, by Isser Harel, the factual account of the apprehension of the World War II Nazi criminal Adolph Eichmann, contains a vignette that every salesperson would benefit from:

    After Harel’s boss at the Israeli Secret Service asked him to detail how he planned to capture Eichmann, the boss was skeptical. The boss cautioned that Eichmann could be physically powerful and might easily resist capture. He wanted to know more. As the book described it, at that point, and without speaking, Harel simply got up from his chair and immediately put his boss in an inescapable and painful chokehold.

    The plan was approved. Maybe it’s easier to ask for forgiveness than for permission?


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