You are about to enter another dimension. It is a dimension more vast than the Internet and as timeless as print advertising. It is the middle ground between leads and conversions, between experience and data. It lies between the pit of a marketer’s greatest fears and the summit of the industry’s collective knowledge. Here the dark entities which haunt the edges of the marketplace come to center stage. You are now entering the Scary Space.
The Phantom Task-Master and the Forgotten Recipient
It was a crisp October’s morning when Maddi from SaleCorp made the greatest mistake of her professional career.
Maddi had spent the last two weeks grinding out a bid for a lucrative contract with the city’s department of labor and, after a brutal, RedBull-fueled all nighter, her work was all but complete. Upon finishing the proposal she felt a calm ecstasy wash over her like a gentle wave. She had constructed a beautiful PowerPoint, complete with every bell and whistle imaginable. Maddi had suffered greatly for that proposal. Her exhaustion showed itself on her face, which was lit by a dimly flickering computer screen, the sole source of light in a dark and empty office. Her eyes were blood-shot and framed by dark bags. Her prematurely greying, strawberry-blonde hair was tied back in a messy ponytail, with independent strands shooting out in every which direction. All the happiness and relief Maddi felt in that one moment caused a weary smile to grow across her face until it shown from ear to ear, only adding to the roughness of her current appearance.
An intoxicating numbness pervaded Maddi’s thinking as she composed the email she would use to deliver her proposal. She hit ‘Send’ and leaned back into her chair to bask in the warm comfort of a job well done. The sense of comfort Maddi felt in that moment would not last long.
The sun was just beginning to rise in the east. It’s golden rays lit the dew covered Autumn trees, making them glow with a fiery warmth. Yet something about the early morning hours still felt cold and empty. An eerie silence hung over the neighborhood. A low fog hovered just a few feet above the ground, which whirled and swooshed sporadically, as if it had a mind of its own. Maddi thought she could almost hear an ominous humming sound being carried through her window by a ghostly breeze. The hairs on the back of her neck stood up as she sensed what felt like an icy breath blow against her neck.
Inside her head, her thoughts turned to madness. It was like a corporate phantom had slipped it’s way into her subconscious. A sadistic, task-master whose haranguing echoed and reverberated through her skull. She had forgotten something. She didn’t know what, but she knew she had forgotten SOMETHING! Her twisted thoughts increased in tempo until they reached a fever pitch, and her whole brain was ablaze. In a frenzied panic, the poor, wilted soul combed through every inch of the proposal. That wasn’t it. Then she examined the email she had just sent.
‘Dear Mr. Blackwell
Attached you will find SalesCorp’s bid for the San Francisco Department of Labor…’
“No! It couldn’t be,” she thought to herself.
In her exhausted stupor Maddi had forgotten about the city’s recent change in management. Mrs. Janette Anderson had stepped into Blackwell’s position, after the former project leader had suffered a near fatal heart attack. 45 seconds had passed before Maddi noticed her mistake. It was too late to unsend.
Maddis’ mind began reeling! Her heart thrashed violently in her chest as she ran her sweaty hands through her messy hair. She had made it this far, only jeopardize the contract with poor record keeping. How could she possibly recover from this. Was her career over? Would she have to give up her corner office in the shiny, new SalesCorp Tower? The company car? Her stock options?
Stories like Maddi’s are all to common. Poor record keeping is a tragedy which each year takes the job of thousands of young professionals.