So what are the takeaways? If you have read Part I and Part II then you know the framework for the story of Piedmont Cruises and Dr. Bacardi.
So let’s take a look at some of the lessons and take aways..
- Be very careful about moving forward in any effort without some sort of guarantee that your going to get something for your time/effort.
- There we were together, someone holding a doctoral certificate and someone not.. both employed by community colleges, both considering the same options to earn a little extra money. I guess you could say Dr. Bacardi has more upward potential, but the key there is potential. She may get the promotion, she may not. There were no guarantees.
- Be very careful* about selling someone else’s product as a means to an end. If the product line is offered by a large conglomerate then you are more than likely going to be behind the ball before you even start, no matter what the promises are.
- The presentation was good, but the product offered was a difficult sell mostly because it was in the higher end of the market and there simply aren’t that many people who have 5K or 10K to spend on a vacation.
- The commission rates seem to have changed.. and gone down considerably from the last time I was engaged as a vendor for this company. My guess.. and it’s just a guess at this time is that they are only paying decent commissions for their top ‘partners’.. this means the barrier to entry into a successful business is higher.
- Don’t forget equal partnerships doesn’t really exist when you are reselling a large company’s product.
- Be careful with debt.. not all debt is good debt, even the debt that’s supposed to be ‘good debt’.
- I didn’t get deep enough into it but I wonder if Dr. Bacardi would be selling travel if she didn’t have student loans to pay down.
* Full Disclosure: Just as a reminder I went to this event to decide if I wanted to continue to be engaged.. or as they say here in North Carolina, if I want to fool with it again… At the time of this writing i’m still undecided. I’m not anti-corporate, or more specifically against this particular company.. It’s just this entire experience reminded me that there is no silver bullet to prosperity and authority. Every venue (work, business, etc..) has elements of luck, hard work, and risk and there is always a barrier stacked up against us in some way. We just don’t need to add more barriers to a world filled with them.