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Les McKeown's Predictable Success Blog

First published May 18, 2006

When 'O' Meets 'P' (with apologies to A Few Good Men) 

If you have seen the film “A Few Good Men”, then you’ll recognize this scene.

Jack Nicholson is on the witness stand (representing the Sales function – big ‘O’ – in this role) and Tom Cruise is Finance (big ‘P’). Enjoy!


> Sales: “You want answers?”

> Finance: “I think we are entitled to them!”

> Sales: “You want answers?!”

> Finance: “I want the truth!”

> Sales: “You can’t handle the truth!!!”

> Sales (continuing): “Son, we live in a world that requires revenue. And that revenue must be brought in by people with elite skills. Who’s going to find it? You? You, Mr. Operations? We have a greater responsibility than you can possibly fathom.

> You scoff at sales division and you curse our lucrative incentives. You have that luxury. You have the luxury of not knowing what we know: that while the cost of business results are excessive, it drives revenue. And my very existence, while grotesque and incomprehensible to you, drives REVENUE! You don’t want to know the truth because deep down in places you don’t talk about at staff meetings … you want me on that call. You NEED me on that call!

> We use words like ‘influence maps’, ‘technical buyers’, ‘pain’, ‘concessions’. We use these words as the backbone of a life spent negotiating something. You use them as a punch line!

> I have neither the time nor inclination to explain myself to people who rise and sleep under the very blanket of revenue I provide and then question the manner in which I provide it. I would rather you just said “thank you” and went on your way. Otherwise I suggest you pick up a phone and make some sales calls. Either way, I don’t give a damn what you think you’re entitled to!”

> Finance: “Did you expense the lap dances?”

> Sales: “I did the job I was hired to do.”

> Finance: “Did you expense the lap dances?”

> Sales: “You’re damn right I did!”

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