Drink 17: Grapefruit gimlet

The Date: September 15

The Friend: Rick Roberge

The Place: Jasper White’s Summer Shack, Boston, MA

The Drink: Grapefruit gimlet

Rick RobergeThe Story: Rick gets the superlative among the 40 drinks for being the only friend that I had never met before our drink.

I met Rick in November 2010 when, for reasons I can’t even quite describe, I answered an email offer via Hubspot for a third-party, virtual sales training program. Before I knew it, I was enrolled in Kurlan’s Sales Development Program for marketing agencies.

I started Savoir Faire about four and a half years ago without much of a plan and have survived in what has probably been the most difficult economy in a century. Although I’m not quite sure I ever set out to start my own business, it has been absolutely the right thing for me for many reasons. After I left my last full-time job, my Auntie Kathleen pronounced that I had the same disease as she did: “You are terminally unemployable.” I have grown to realize that she is right and, despite the risk, despite the unknown, despite the uncertainty, being master of my own destiny is, without question, the right thing for me.

Before I started working with Rick, all my clients had come directly from my network or through no more than a one-step referral. (Yay, networking!) However, even with a network as extensive as mine, that’s a limited pool of prospects. The process and procedure that Rick has been teaching and coaching me on for almost a year now allows me to go beyond that network and determine whether a person or business is in my sweet spot and will be a good match for Savoir Faire.

Now, all the nice stuff being said, I have to admit that Rick’s methods are uncommon. He’s prickly. He’s forward. He plays the game by his own rules and tough nuts if you don’t want to play that way. This spring, in a particularly heated conversation where he was pushing me hard, he literally made me cry and I walked away for a couple months, but I’m back with him now and more committed than ever to mastering these skills.

Let me tell you, a “good job” or an “I’m proud of you” from Rick on our morning call sets an amazing tone for the rest of my day.

I’ve had to learn to take the Rick-isms and Steph-anize them to make them work for me. But here’s the thing: it turns out the results are quite uncommon as well and Savoir Faire is growing, thriving and on the verge of exploding. Watch out, kids. With Rick Roberge as my coach, I’m gonna be kicking some major ass and reaching for the stars…and beyond.

Grapefruit-Basil GimletThe Drink: Since the drink took place during a big group dinner during a Hubspot conference, we had to improvise, but that’s what Rick has been teaching me how to do for the past several months, so it was appropriate.

The drink we shared was sort of appropriate, too. We had a grapefruit gimlet, which I thought was delicious. Now, some people find grapefruit to be sour and unpalatable, which describes Rick to a T. He’s not for everyone. However, if he’s your cup of tea or if, like me, you’ve acquired a taste for him, he’s just about your favorite!

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