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Is 2020 the year subtlety goes to die?

Is 2020 the year that subtlety goes to die?
Have we just taken it out back and shot it?
Have we forgotten all the lessons that we’ve learned over the years?
Is customer service just not a thing anymore?

These are all questions that I ask to myself…. Maybe talking to myself is a bad sign. Other Dave is the only person who seems to understand my frustration with what’s been happening.

“World Class Product and World Class Service. These are what I used to tell people were the bare minimum to get into a business.
If we don’t have the product and don’t have the service, we’re going to be eaten by someone who has both of these.

Now a days it seems like we’ve forgotten all of this. We’ve thrown listening to a person’s objections and concerns out the window. We’ve thrown relationship building out the window.

I asked on LinkedIn if I’m the only person who is expecting a hard pitch immediately after connecting. Happy to know that I’m not. Sad to hear that’s what everyone is thinking when they see connection requests.

This is my plea:

people are still people in 2020. Many of us are scared. Many of us are unsure about what’s going to happen. Let us not forget that at the end of the day we are all humans. Humans with wants, needs, emotions, and a life outside of this internet thing that you’re pitching us on.

The ways we use to do things like asking someone a question and getting their response is more valid now than ever. Yes, the world has changed, but that doesn’t mean I want your cut and paste (insert service).
Ask me if I have a problem. Am I looking to expand my sales team? Ask me about my lead generation or financial services. Then understand what I say and answer based off of that.

The more copy/paste questions I get, the more frustrated I get. Especially when I answer you and you or your bot just blurt out the canned response.

I’m here to provide value to my network. To find other people who provide valuable information and knowledge in my network. Maybe one day we’ll find a way to work together. Maybe one day we’ll meet at a conference, if those ever become a thing again. Maybe I’ll be driving by and we’ll grab a coffee.

These are my goals and the goals that I beg of everyone reading (and especially not reading) to remember.

Business is all about the long game. Many of us here have been in it for years and are committed to it for many more. If you come in and alienate people, soon enough you’ll be off to the next thing.

The goal remains unchanged: Build a world class product with world class service around it. Build a team and network of super stars and universe-class talent to support it.

These are the words that you’ll see written. The words you’ll hear me say on a client site. The words that have gotten me here and that I hope will continue to propel the message.

I hope that all of you can also embrace this message and we will be together on this ride for many a year to come.

Everyone else:

Take a step back. Is what you’re doing actually working? Or is it just pushing you down a path that you’ll regret taking? It’s not too late. Remember to ask questions. Listen to answers. Build products that fill solutions. Provide value, and your customers will continue to support you.


If you are looking to get better. To remember product and service. To remember how to listen… Please drop me a line or check out my map of places I’m planning to go.