The One Lockdown Lasting Mark

FT international politics columnist Janan Ganesh listed all those things once written off as gone forever by lockdown decree.

Noted whilst revelling in how "changing city" Bangkok had beamed even brighter back into life by August 2022;

"This is as good a time as any to make a non-exhaustive list of things that I read in 2020 had little future.
The handshake.
Buildings tall enough to need lifts.
Casual sex (ha ha).
Pret A Manger.
The rat race.
Business-class seats.
I recount none of this in order to embarrass.
If any prediction has aged badly, it was that Covid would pass with few deaths.
Nor do I expect a medal for having said that cities would roar back. I got the timing wrong: even I didn’t think Dubai airport at 1am would resemble a Black Friday mall by August 2022."

Before signing the paragraph off with this little beauty;

"As for the pandemic’s one lasting mark — remote work — I wrote it off as a fad."

Given the focus of my blogging here lately, there's two thoughts which this contention gives rise to.

Is remote work really now 'lasting'?

What does this mean for solution selling over live video?

Lasting? Yes. I concur. Yet not perhaps for the reason most cite. Namely the sense that people are keen their grip is kept on not having to be in the office every day.

No commute. No needless meetings. No pandering to politics. No presenteeism. No unsavoury cultural pervasion. No unnecessary contact with drag anchor or worse colleagues. No work-life imbalance. No missing out on home life mundanity which provides meaning. No missing out on home life landmarks which provides gleaming.

Such lists are legion.

Yet we in commercial Sales have walked with longer leash for decades. Pretty much impossible for every customer cluster to have a hyper-local branch. Even in my first exposure to such Enterprise environment, salesreps of the day, pre-laptops, widely entrusted based at home office, fitted with landline phone and fax alone. Same went for service engineers, incidentally.

Remote selling is merely an extension of this setup. So yes, building on firm footings it is indeed, lasting.

As for ramifications, a foundational pair immediately spring to mind flowing our way.

Firstly, what these compilations miss though, is fundamental.


For years we've sold within a prevailing tele-centric view. Call centre boiler rooms are nothing new. Even six-figure basics could and did make the majority of their business on the blower. My first stint inside an American sales office was an incredible eye-opener. Big ticketers would do as much over the phone as they could, physical visit (unless genuinely 'in the neighborhood [sic]') a last resort. In stark contrast to English counterparts, more keen to spend as many days out the office whenever possible on often the flimsiest of pretexts.

So I would say that this hammers home the element of remote work I see lasting; the sales video call.

For on this above line item alone, there will be certain trips you no longer need to make.

All whilst freeing up huge chunks of your most precious resource - your time - to devote to more selling. Sales set to rise accordingly.

Which brings us to the second consequence. The wonder is, you will not diminish your chances of success by switching conversations to video, but actually see them strengthen.

it is not enough to simply try doing more over video. It is paramount you know precisely which of the previously undertaken transaction mediums can be effectively moved to videolinks.

Your prospects will love discovering this from you too.

There will be phone calls, email threads or messagings, and in-person meetings ripe for the greater progress that awaits once transferred to video.

The trick is, to identify them, then work out how to unleash their star power.

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