A Day in Sales — Pre-Covid.

Brian Benedict
5 min readDec 31, 2020

Alarm rings at 3:50 AM but I am already awake, I make my way into the guest room where my clothes are laid out on a bed, move quickly to the bathroom then put on my jeans, button-up shirt, sport coat and head downstairs holding my shoes in hand to not wake anyone. Write two notes to my kids to be good for mom as I will be home tomorrow.

4:40 AM — I grab my laptop and rollaway which are already waiting by the door and head into my car. It’s 4:40 AM and I have a 6:00 AM flight heading to LGA and at this time of day it will take me less than 30 minutes to get to the airport.

The road is empty and I start collecting my thoughts on the day ahead, three meetings, one client dinner. Meetings start at 10:00 AM, so if traffic is light I can potentially drop my rollaway off at the hotel so I don’t need to lug it to each meeting, or if it’s heavy I will be stuck with it all day.

5:07 AM — I find my usual spot in Parking, make my way to PreTSA which at this time of day is heavier lines than normal check-in given all my brothers and sisters on the earliest flights to their work destination, the TSA guards recognize me as they scan my license as I am a weekly customer. I get through security and make my way to my usual breakfast spot for something light before boarding.

5:40 AM — I get lucky today and am upgraded for the short flight, the plane is cold as it’s early and the door is open to let passengers in, so sitting in the front requires me to keep my heavy Sportcoat on and put a scarf on as well. I check my email via phone and can’t wait to get in the air to finish putting some final touches on the slides for the day.

6:20 AM — I am in the air working on my decks for the day — I have to act quickly given its about 20 minutes of wi-fi before the descent. Looking at the clock we should be at the gate around 7:25 AM which will give me about 15 minutes to grab something for the car ride into New York and if all goes well I should be in NYC near my destination around 8:45.

7:40 AM — I get into an Uber, call home wish everyone a good day, text my SE who is landing around 8:15 — coordinate where to meet — find a Starbucks close by our first meeting spot, then get back on the 2nd presentation, doing some further research on the company, reviewing notes from the last meeting, writing questions in my folio that I need further details on.

8:50 AM — I made it to my hotel early, the room isn’t ready but I have checked-in they can hold my rollaway, I then walk from the hotel to the meeting spot. My SE is on route via car from the airport.

9:40 AM — My SE pulls into Starbucks — we have been prepping via phone his entire drive and need to go to check into the first meeting’s building as their is usually a long line for 10 am meetings, I have emailed my contact asking if the room is available early for us to get in and setup — that is not the case, so we will be working with limited time, having to set up while also kicking off the meeting.

10:02 AM — We enter the meeting room and start getting the AV equipment hooked up — minor glitches but nothing unexpected, one member of the team has decided to call in, so we set up a zoom for that participant (another 5 minutes).

11:01 AM — The meeting has ended and we have confirmed next steps and we need to make it across town for a meeting starting at 12:00 PM. As I head down the elevator I request an Uber, by the time I get outside its waiting — we have a tight window, lunch will have to wait, traffic is heavy we make it in front of the building by 11:50 AM.

11:55 AM — The line is long to check-in, I call my contact letting them know we are in the lobby, seeing if they can come down and get us as we are close to checking in. They are on their way. We check-in and make our way upstairs. Meeting starts at 12:10 PM, one of the executives has a hard stop at 12:45, we pivot and go no slides and whiteboard given the questions. We are aligned on the path forward. We stay behind with our champion for 10 minutes de-briefing.

1:07 PM — Leaving the building — we have an internal pipeline call at 2:00 PM so we find a wi-fi sandwich shop close by our 3:00 PM Meeting. We need to charge our laptops as our batteries are running low. The lines are long as we wait to grab our food, finding a table is challenging but we get lucky and find one on the corner near an outlet to charge our equipment. We take our calls then need to leave by 2:45 PM to make our 3:00 PM across the street.

2:50 PM — I get an email that the 3:00 PM cannot start on time given an Executives schedule and need to push until 5:00 PM and they only have 30 minutes. My SE and I were both hoping to head back to our hotel prior to our client dinner at 6:00 PM but that won’t be happening now. We agree to the time change and work at a coffee shop preparing for the 5:00 PM change of plans, scrapping our deck and changing our approach.

4:35 PM — I get a call from one of our clients that he is bringing another co-worker to dinner tonight but the person is a vegetarian and we are heading to a Steakhouse wondering if we can change venues.

4:50 PM — found a new restaurant close to my clients office that can accommodate our party on short notice as I am checking into our 5:00 PM meeting in line.

5:10 PM — executive is running late — we need to adjust our timeframe as they have a hard stop at 5:30 PM. We make the session a Q&A and answer their concerns, get the verbal on moving forward.

5:45 PM — Finding an Uber is difficult as it takes 15 minutes to get one given end of day traffic. We will be hard pressed to make a 6:00 PM dinner at the new venue. I turn on my hotspot answer emails in the Uber from the day as we drive to our client meeting. Call my client letting them know we are running 10 minutes late.

6:12 PM — Enter the restaurant meet our clients for dinner.

8:45 PM — Leave the restaurant with my SE and cab back to our hotel.

9:20 PM — Check into our hotel, change clothes, call home, then SE and I meet in lobby preparing for tomorrow’s meeting.

10:45 PM — Back in bedroom, press clothes for Day 2.

I miss this.