When I was a senior in college, my boyfriend said something to me that still sticks with me to this day, impacting my decisions as I go through life. He said, “The best thing about you is that if you say you are going to do something, you always do it.” Twenty years later, I still make every effort to prove him right…
This past week was not our best at Jenerosity Marketing.
Don’t get me wrong; business is absolutely thriving!
We are taking on new Clients, doing amazing deals and are on track to more than double our revenue this year.
That said, every once in a while, you have experiences that make you question people in general, but more importantly, their integrity.
Earlier this year, I was hired by a long-time licensing colleague to help them with QSR promotions for a major toy brand.
After setting up meetings at Toy Fair with all the major players, we were informed by the toy manufacturer that they were granting the business to another agency.
Now, normally, I would say it is fair for a brand to opt to go with the representation that they deem will be most effective for them.
However, in this case, there was a verbal agreement and a contract had already been sent over for review and execution.
The manufacturer was fully aware that we were actively scheduling meetings but still didn’t feel it was necessary to honor their verbal agreement.
Last week, a similar thing happened to us directly.
In this case, we got a call via referral from someone who needed a new salesperson.
They were looking for someone part time who had other Clients they were managing but who could still work their booth at Licensing Show.
Upon being approached, we advised that we were potentially working for another Client at this show but would see what we could do.
The other Client kindly suggested we take this job as they could find someone else to cover for them at their booth if necessary.
So, we enthusiastically did!
On Monday, we negotiated terms with the new Client and compiled and submit a list of target companies for approval.
On Tuesday, we got an email telling us to start scheduling appointments.
We then tried unsuccessfully to connect for three days, as we still didn’t know exactly which properties we would be actively pitching (which we felt might be helpful when asking people for their time at the busiest show of the year!).
On Friday, we finally spoke, at which time the new Client informed us that they were going to look for someone on more of a full-time basis.
As I stated earlier, business is good; we don’t need this business.
But some acknowledgement that we had made a verbal agreement would have been appreciated, especially since we turned down other work to be able to support their needs!
Which brings me to this week’s question.
Is integrity dead?
How many times have I heard the phrase “We are going to submit a proposal” only to never receive anything in writing?
They must have sent it to you!
Even the basic LA refrain “Let’s do lunch!” has become farcical…
So, why don’t people do what they say they are going to do? Don’t they recognize that it hurts their credibility?
Do they think they won’t ever be held accountable? Maybe they won’t…
Or maybe they just don’t care.
And what does that say about people in general?
As always, please tell us what you think in the Comments below…