I just bought a home!

It was a laborious 5-month process with much negotiation. There were times when Tim and I thought we needed to give up or at the minimum, say “shove it” to the folks from whom we were trying to buy.

It was our dream house. But the process was difficult and uphill all the way. And I couldn’t understand why our generous offer and “can-do” attitude was being met with such resistance.

Tim and I could have said “shove it.” We could have played much harder than we did. Instead, over dinner after yet another email exchange with realtors, we talked about our values — and who we want to be in the world.

Who you are is everything. And we played by our standards the whole way through.

When we showed up to the closing, we were so curious to meet the sellers. Who were these people? It turns out that they were people who were very attached to the home. They raised their kids there. They know all their neighbors. And they were concerned about selling to anyone who would develop the place in the wrong direction.

So what does this have to do with direct marketing? A lot.

You can play only by ROI numbers. You can try to squeeze another 10k out of the rock. You can see the people on the other side of the transaction as robots. But how you behave in the world says more about you and your brand than anything else.

How would your donors describe you and your actions? Would they call you generous? Would they call you aggressive? Would they call you trustworthy?

Food for thought… in work and in life.