I’m overweight. One might feel that I should, as a result and as a courtesy, be ‘jollier’. The almost white beard doesn’t add to the fact I’m looking more and more like Santa with each passing month.


I have an incredible family, a few awesome companies, and this should mean that I should not be the cantankerous and grumpy old fart that I seem to have become. For someone as rotund as me, I should be careful of the soap box breaking under me, but I wanted to write this article because I feel that you, me, and so darn many people are losing our decency and humanity.


Yes, I know you’d cry at a touching reality TV show (me too). You’d ‘aaaah’ at an adorable puppy/kitten/baby (take your pick – for me I’m a sucker for puppy breath and kittens) and it hits you in the ‘feels’ when we hear of people being mistreated, but this adds so much to the unavoidable truth that it makes us a little (or a lot) hypocritical. Let me explain.


Besides owning a few businesses, producing and presenting a weekly business and finance radio show, and writing finance and business articles, I am also a specialized finance and business advisor that has created a very unique and powerful way to dramatically improve one’s financial present and future. But like all people that have a business, there is an element of sales that must be done (insert lightning and thunder and ominous music here).


Hands up if you’ve ever received one of those mechanical, robotic, pre-recorded phone calls in which your phone rings (often at 7:30am) and when you answer it, a pre-recorded message drones on without so much as a whiff of human interaction. Nothing sets my day off in the wrong tone than this. I moan on the way to dropping the kids off that if ‘they’ want to phone me then they can bloody well let a human phone me.


Ah, but…!!!


When a sales person actually calls you to offer their service, you ‘don’t have time’, are ‘uninterested’ and ‘how dare you give me an unsolicited phone call’. Almost every one of you reading this (there are a tiny few angels out there), have been rude, short, and in a surprising amount of time, abusive towards a person on the other end of the phone. Let’s be honest with ourselves now. God knows I’ve done it my fair share of times. But I’ve also been on the receiving end of the abuse as well, so I do want to make a statement.


Next time you get a call from a sales person, I ask that you take a breath and think, even though this person has interrupted you while you juggle all of life’s many balls while crunching through the daily grind, please just remember that the person on the other end of the line is a human being like you, trying to do the best job that they can do, with actual human feelings and emotions…just like you


This person has probably been sworn at, shouted at, and treated like trash all day. They probably earn a fraction of what you do, and, if you take the time to just listen for a second and engage…HUMAN TO HUMAN, you’d be amazed at how much this will change their day, and possibly yours too. Knowing you’ve brought a little love and light into someone’s day makes you a winner, wena.




This too goes for the sales people that you actually book an appointment to see. Just know that if you’ve booked a time in their dairy, and they are travelling to see you, cancelling last minute without being decent enough to offer a reason and/or an alternate time is a not ‘ayoba’. Time is our most valuable resource so let’s ALL try to be more respectful of other’s time.


Not even arriving at said meeting…well, that’s abuse and theft of time or the worst kind and is done only by the lowest of the low. It’s a HUGE NO-NO! Sadly it happens in Cape Town more than any other region in SA which makes me think that there is a sense of self-righteousness in the Mother City that leads to abuse of others. Sis guys and girls. If you’re from Cape Town, and may be guilty, then please let’s start to be as beautiful towards our fellow Capetonians as this city is to us.


Don’t forget, in this world in which there are “too many sales people”, “too may ads”, “too much marketing noise”, that EVERYTHING that keeps your company alive, everything that you own and use, relies almost entirely on sales. So, please stop being ‘that guy/girl’ and let’s remember we aren’t some all-important deity. We are, in truth, all trying to keep our spot on this crazy hamster wheel of life.


And who knows, maybe the product or service being offered may actually be of huge benefit to you. Who’da thunk it.

About The Author

Steve Hughes

Steve Hughes is an independent financial advisor specialising in personal and business solutions. He has a passion for empowering people through better understanding and has created a fresh and highly sought-after approach to financial planning. He is the founder of the PLATINUM model of fringe financial services and the PLATINUM EVENTS, and you can catch him on LIFE MATTERS, OneFM 94.0’s weekly business & finance show which he produces and presents. As a private wealth consultant and business owner, his approach to personal and business consulting is industry leading, and it is his desire to reshape the financial service world that drives his passion. Steve can be reached at steve@stevehughes.co.za.

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