How One Phone Call Cost Me $45k

This post originally appeared on the blog:

A few years ago I lost $45k in one phone call. It still bugs me. And it happened for no good reason. I simply failed at winning over the right people, which stopped me from getting the deal done.

I’ve changed a few details in order to maintain confidentiality, but the lessons are the same.

When I was a solo consultant, a senior executive I knew wanted help growing a slow performing product line. We worked together for two weeks analyzing the business and putting together a proposal. The project was worth $45k.

I was assured the decision was his alone to make, even after asking if there was budget and if anyone else needed to approve the proposal. I started planning a surfing trip in Indonesia as a reward for a job well done.

The phone rings Wednesday morning and my contact says, “Alright Aaron, we’re ready to go ahead. I’d like to start next Monday… but let me check in with the chairman of the company one more time.”

At that moment my heart sank. So much for surfing. I knew the deal was lost and it was all my fault. Sure enough, the next day the call comes telling me the chairman didn’t feel the project was worth their time or money.

To read what I should have done read the rest of the article at!

- Aaron

Aaron Vidas