Working Like CRAZY to Keep Up
As a young woman, the phrase, “Keep Your Foot in the Door” had potential to hold a weird place in my mind. Kind of like Jack Nicholson’s evil face as he tries to break through the door in The Shining. Scary. Crazy. But as I grew older, I came to understand it a bit more…
Even as a new/young mother, I always worked outside of the home, I wanted to “keep my foot in the door” – any door – for my career and the field in which I worked. I knew that I was one of those people who would always work, no matter what, and that I needed to keep up on my skill set – whatever they might be, as well as learn and absorb anything new that I could in order to excel at whatever it was that I was currently pursuing.
I coached volleyball for young teenagers sporadically for over 25 years. I took a few years off during that 25 years and during that time, the rules of volleyball changed – quite a bit. When I returned to coaching, I felt completely ill-prepared to coach a bunch of seventh graders in a sport 90% of them had never played. I quickly transitioned from coaching to teaching, that included self-teaching. Not keeping my foot in the door had cost me time, as well as my sanity, as thirty-five seventh graders depended on me as their go-to person on all things volleyball.
Keeping Up with the Times
Do you think there are still successful business professional out there who fax documents on a regular basis? Maybe they still use Fed-Ex to send information on high quality bond paper? Maybe, but I doubt it. Perhaps if their work is confined to the banking and mortgage industries – but these industries are also consistently changing and updating.
“I’m interested, tell me more…” I need to learn as much as I can about technology and the changes it has brought to not only my industry, but business – in general.
And while business processes and how we manage them may be different now, how we treat business relationships should not…
A Voice on the Phone
My proverbial foot in the door is not wearing new and improved Earth Shoes. There are those – you know who you are – who claim to have learned it all, that no one does it better. And while they may be right (they aren’t), there is no way they became the best by using out-dated technology or ahem, “used car salesmen” tactics. They have become so because they have worked to become so, not by just saying so. The best and most under-used foot in the door today is a voice on the phone, connecting every day with potential clients and existing clients. Never underestimate the power of a voice-to-voice connection. A great network doesn’t hurt either.
I have no desire to fade into the woodwork or to become a has-been. I will continue to work, learn, grow, and change. That’s what it takes. Keeping up with business has everything to do with keeping your foot in the door. It does for me, anyway.
by Rayanne Thorn