I used to think that being able to sell was something you either have. Or don’t have. It’s a talent. I couldn’t articulate as to what it exactly entailed. But there was something I thought I knew for sure. I didn’t have that gift.
When I was in high school, in order to earn some extra pocket money, I tried peddling festive greeting cards with my friends during one of my school vacations. We would carry up to 20 packets of such cards in our backpacks and scour through the residential estates, going from household to household, repeating that same sales pitch to every person we saw over and over again. It was really hard work. I would consider myself lucky if I manage to sell anything at all. Even though I was really lucky once, selling more than 10 packets on one day, I never repeated that feat. Since that vacation, I told myself not to get a sales job. Ever.
In University, I was having a difficult time finding a suitable vacation job and a friend asked me to try telephone sales. For a few dollars an hour, I worked as a telemarketer in a financial planning firm. We were given a list of prospects and for every lead we generate from the list, an extra commission would be given. And if that lead converted to a sale, we would get an additional bonus. For the 2 months I worked there, I didn’t earn any commission or bonus at all. It certainly didn’t feel good. But it worsened when I knew another friend got a commission on the first day she worked! Read more
Since realizing that I was unconsciously “programming” my little niece, I’ve been pretty wary about how I’m interacting with her. Young children are just like sponges and will absorb almost anything we feed into them. They don’t have the filters to differentiate what’s right and wrong and having to correct those improper ones when they’re grown up can be quite an excruciating experience. Not to mention the embarrassment at times.
I used to have this University ex-hostel mate. A brilliant straight-As student. When she was still in junior high school, she got this impression – most likely from her parents – that if a boy and a girl “slept together”, the girl would be pregnant. Well, theoretically she was right, wasn’t she? But apparently her parents omitted the “important prerequisite” for the pregnancy. One day when she went to a school camp, she was so worried the whole night if she would be pregnant the next day that she didn’t sleep well! The whole class of boys and girls slept in the same vacated classroom! Ha ha! Read more