Tell me about it! How many times has this happened to you? I know in my case there have been so many events like this it’s almost unreal. But they have had their drawbacks.
I’m going to be vulnerable here, not because I enjoy living under a microscope, or because I like being in front of people as I truly am, but because if i’m not speaking the truth and sharing it willingly, the voice I use to speak with isn’t heard by the ears that are listening for this very specific “Truth.”
The Right Place at the Right Time….let’s see. I think one of the biggest events in this realm was the opportunity I got to sell the very first wave of personal computers into the Federal Government. This opportunity came to me right out of left field. Allow me to set the stage here so it all makes sense.
I owned a construction company with a partner and to make a long story short, I almost died one cold February morning back in 1986 when the Bathgate Towers were being built here in Ottawa. I was getting off the lift and I was carrying a 4’x 8′ sheet of plywood. We were the crew that framed the exterior walls, so were the first ones on the slab, and were usually two floors under the crew who were flying forms and pouring fresh cement as the building added levels. As I stepped off the lift onto the frozen slab, the wind caught the plywood and I began this crazy surf across the slippery floor. My partner was screaming and I couldn’t quite figure out why but the urgency in his screams and the sheer volume caused me to let go of the sheet. When looked down, I was about 2 feet from the edge of the building and we were on the 14th floor. I wasn’t tied off, so had I held on seconds longer I would have experienced the same plummeting fall my sheet of plywood did. Needless to say I was rattled.
My partner’s brother was constantly after me to speak to his friend who was looking for “Salespeople” to sell computers into the Feds. I guess he thought I fit the bill because I handled all the contract selling for our Construction company. I kept telling him that I wasn’t interested, but he kept bugging me to call. The scare I got that cold February morning prompted me to do just that.
I set up an appointment, got hired and away we went. I was the third person hired by this company and although I didn’t have any real Sale’s Skills, I did have a great background in complaint mediation. Turns out the company needed more of those skills than it did Salespeople. I continued to take care of problems for the end user community and the buying just began. It was a license to print money! A couple of things took place after that and technology just kept developing and so did our offering and my career. We were one of the first true Window’s bundlers with an install and support group, that led to and understanding that Document Management was required and so we sourced a product and did great things on that front. My ability to connect dots and see things differently equipped me with vision ahead of most of my teammates. I have an ability to hear things that aren’t said as opposed to what are said and this skill has provided me with a special knack for probing deeply and getting to the true needs on many fronts.
Thanks for bearing with me. Here is where the vulnerability portion enters this post. Having had the ability to turn on the money tap whenever I needed or wanted to, caused me to push back the need for retirement funding or financial planning to be distant thoughts. I’d get to it in due time. Well when “due time” arrives and you turn on the old reliable money tap and nothing happens….then what? At first panic, then remorse, and guilt, and shame and fear and every other crippling emotion that keeps us wallowing in despair. I am now part of the statistic of Sr. Citizens, the great Boomer generation who is caught in a deadly situation. No real retirement options. I know I’m not alone on this front. There are many more like me, maybe they haven’t been prompted to face their circumstances yet, or maybe they are still too paralyzed to move in any direction?
I’m writing this post to let you know that despite how things may seem for you when you look at them, that you do have some options, and some pretty good ones at that. You see my ability to ask questions and find solutions and have vision has provided me with a future that does offer me retirement. It’s available to anyone who makes a decision to step into it. You see as Seniors we are equipped with knowledge and some pretty good knowledge. We can’t really claim it as wisdom yet because a lot of it hasn’t been applied. I guess the moral of the story is, YOU have some incredible value to offer, but maybe just aren’t aware of where or how to start!
If a conversation is something that interests you then by all means, get hold of me via the comments section of this blog.
Have a great day….unless you have other plans.