I remember my mother chasing my car as I backed out of the driveway to register on my first day of college: "Take pre-med!" she screamed, "You can always switch!" But I wanted to be a businessman, like my dad.
He was the consummate entrepreneur. Growing up, I used to sneak downstairs and listen in on his Thursday night pinochle game. Arguments and laughs about business and life. It proved to be my inspiration for my life's pursuits. My pal, Duke Dalton said, "You know what I hate about your old man? He's never wrong." I miss my folks, and I'm grateful to them for their wisdom - the stuff they accused me of never listening to for 30+ years. If your parents are alive, call them right now and tell them you love them.
In college, I played Scrabble every day with my best friend, Michael Toll. He usually won. It taught me about words and how to use them. Michael also provided me with the challenge of winning at games, both sports and intellectual. He'll tell you he was better than me at everything. I feel the same about him. That was the fun.
I spent a year in Europe and came to the realization that I knew very little compared to what there was to know, which is funny, because I left for Europe knowing everything.
I raised a family. My three beautiful daughters taught me patience. They also gave me the courage and inspiration to achieve in the face of failure. Girls, I love you.
And I became a salesman. My first goal was to be the best salesman in the world. I'm still on that journey, every day. In the pursuit of that goal I surprised myself by becoming a columnist, an author, a speaker, a consultant, and a sales trainer. I used to hate flying. Now I spend about a quarter of my life in an airplane. But I really don't mind, because it gives me the precious opportunity to share my sales knowledge and my secrets with a worldwide audience. What could be better?
My name is Jeffrey Gitomer. I'm a salesman. I'm a dad. I'm a college dropout.
My objective in life is to help others, establish long-term relationships, and have fun - every day. When you love your work like I do, every day is the same. It's a holiday.