Karma is a funny thing. Today I am experiencing this from my decades-long career in sales. The boomerang is coming around and I can feel it wacking me on the side of the head. It has to do with credit terms and vendor relationships.
I used to sell shirts and custom embroidered hats for two different vendors. I would make my rounds and visit my customers and they’d buy. But in the early days, sometimes I’d run up against a purchasing manager or division head who would need to buy his shirts and hats on credit. He didn’t have a company VISA card, and figured we’d just send him a bill for the order.
That line always got my bosses suspicious, and caused a furor in the office. My Napoleonic company president would yell at me and demand that we get half the money up front, or insist that they fill out an impossibly long form in order to have the privilege of using their credit card. There was more than one time that customers got insulted by our strict terms, and I lost sales as a result. Very few were trusted, most were never given the benefit of the doubt.
Fast forward to 2007: I own two businesses and need to buy lots of things from vendors. Some things, like food, you just have to have terms for, since nobody knows how much the bills will be for each delivery. And so now I am getting hassled and threatened with no food delivery unless I produce a check — right now!
Errggh. Is this kharma calling me? Am I paying the heavens for those years when I was the most demanding bill collector, the guy who always forced them to pay up front, or produce a credit card after completing a long questionaire? I take a deep breath, and realize that hey, we are all people with jobs in this life. And I won’t take it out on the sales guy, just relax and fork over the dough.