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  1. EmmaSweet

    Attagirl, Michelle! There is a lot to learn. But your approach and attitude will help you so much. Try emulating your manager and soon you’ll find your own style and voice. Handling objections is tough, especially the first time for each one. After, you may wish you’d countered with something and sure, the meeting might have gone better. But each time you learn more, and next time you’ll be better prepared. 

    Many people think sales is easy, for those who speak quickly and able to convince people to buy. In fact, sales roles are hard and sleaziness doesn’t work. Stay patient with yourself, learn each day, and in a short time you’ll feel empowered and see how you’re offering a real and valuable service to your customers and your company.


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  2. MichelleLea

    Thanks for the encouragement and advice. I was in training all day and will go out with the district manager tomorrow to start making calls. At first, all we are doing is getting an appointment. After that, we can sit down with the business owner and make our presentation. I'll let you know how it goes. I've just got to jump in and get my feet wet. Oh, btw, I did win a duck in training today.LOL

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  3. EmmaSweet

    One more thing, please. Did you ever hear that when you’re selling a drill you’re not selling a tool that holds bits and twirls  them around. What you’re actually selling are holes. The same thing is true for insurance. In this case you’re selling peace of mind. If something unfortunate happens (and we know it does, all too often and to each of us) your customers will be covered financially. Maybe not 100% and it’s true that insurance doesn’t cover emotional distress, at least the effects of monetary loss are reduced when we need it most.

    Good luck in your new career. I’m confident you’ll do well.


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  4. EmmaSweet

    Selling anything, especially something like insurance, is tough. I sold capital equipment for about five years and I was pretty good at. Why? Because what I was really selling was myself. Be friendly, respectful, and educational. If they don’t want to listen or hear your pitch:

    - Is there a better or more convenient time for me to come back to talk?

    - Would you mind if I follow up with you again in, say, six months? (Keep short notes so when you do return you can remind them about your previous visit.)

    Keep at it and make it fun. When you’re on the phone be sure to stand and smile while you’re speaking. Your voice will be warmer and your energy will come through.


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  5. MichelleLea

    I didn't mean to publish that just yet. Anyway, I want to say that this has become like a second home on TG Guide. I have enjoyed getting to know Monica, Chrissy, and Emma and appreciate your comments. It will be comforting to have you all along for the ride as I start my new journey. Hugs.

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  6. Chrissy


    Enjoy the talk!  I have to admit I wasn't thrilled by her new book, but I loved the first one and have loved her every time I've heard her speak (never in person, just on TV).

    On the topic of community - I think for me it was important to (finally) realize that I could shift my social priorities away from the trans community without cutting myself off from the people and issues of the community. So I keep doing the support group, and I work with some trans identified clients at my internship and on a volunteer basis, etc.



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  7. EmmaSweet

    Michelle, I also have two sons that I have somewhat distant relationships with. The older (33) is kind of stand-offish, very sensitive to anything I might say, and invulnerable. The younger (29) vacillates between horribly depressed and fairly steady. He resists getting and holding onto a job because his mother (we divorced over 20 years ago) rescues him with money frequently although every single psychologist has advised that that is the exact opposite thing to do. These relationships have been painful for me especially as I know that I played my own negative role as I was so depressed and uncertain myself during their childhood. But I was also much closer to them that my father was to me and hey, I turned out all right - I think!

    I'm so happy for you to get your insurance license and wish you the best in finding a job that you enjoy. 

    Take care,


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  8. EmmaSweet

    This topic came up in a recent post on Joanna Santos’ blog, "Musings From My Everyday Life" as well. I think Chrissy explained it much better than Joanna or me. I feel the same way as her and I’ve also wondered about it. I love it here at TGGuide but otherwise I just want to get on with my life. My main friends are cisgender women, some gay, some straight. I seem to fit right in with women as friends and I love that.

    All that said, tonight I’m going out to dinner with two cis women who have transgender daughters. After, we’re going to see Janet Mock give a talk! It’s getting more chilly in Seattle so I’m looking forward to wearing a new jacket I bought at Nordstrom Rack a couple of weeks ago. :P


    P.S. I would also like to add how much I appreciate Chrissy, Monica, and Michelle, as well as all others here. It’s been three years for me at TGG and its helped me so much. BTW, My first name is Emma. I originally coined "Sweet" as an anonymous last name that also, I hoped, reflected my disposition. These days I'm often using my family name Gray. My full name is Emma Joy Gray!

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  9. MichelleLea

    I too have been mulling over the concept of community more for the cross-dressing folks like me, but it could also apply to interested LGBT folks. My original idea was more like a retirement sorority house for us older CD's where we could live together and support one another. Then the idea of a commune came up where we would each have our own houses, but be in the same area. i don't know, it would just be nice to have our own little world where we could be ourselves and be with people who understand and we could just be friends and have fun together. Like an LGBT utopia. Nice to think about anyway. And yes, I think Monica is right about having more face-to-face contact with like minded people. Anyway, for now, I too am grateful for TGGuide and the friends I have met her e. Thanks Monica and Chrissy and EmmaSweet.

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  10. MonicaPz

    Dear MichelleLea, Emma and Chrissy,

    Usually "mother of the bride" gowns are great women's formal wear that is appropriate for ball room/formal affairs.

    Is there a chance you could photograph yourself in it and upload a picture of yourself in it?

    Your friend,


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  11. MonicaPz

    Dear Chrissy,

    Interesting that you bring that up, as I am giving a talk about "community," at Fantasia Fair in two weeks.

    As a cisgender Lesbian, I watched the Lesbian community become absorbed by the community at large (assimilated). Feel strongly this disempowered the Lesbian community, as evidenced by the disappearance of Lesbian bookstores.

    Sadly, I have to seek community by attending transgender support groups and conferences. Am very grateful for the outreach of the transgender community.

    In Florida, as well as in New York, I have observed some people who transitioned, leave the group. Feel the group's job is to empower people to go on to the next step in their lives. Hopefully they keep the friends they made in the group. Don't think it is healthy to remain in any kind of support group for a lifetime as this shows the person made little or no growth.

    What concerns me is when there are no support groups when people need them the most. Feel that people need face to face support and that online support should be secondary to face to face support.

    When I moved to trans and homophobic upstate New York, I am grateful to find a welcoming transgender support and conference group.

    Why am I not in a Lesbian in a transgender support group? There is none convenient to where I live (I do not drive). I find support wherever I can find it!

    Thank you, my dear friends in TGGuide and Fantasia Fair, for being there for me when I most needed it. Will always be grateful for your friendship!

    Your friend,


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  12. Chrissy

    Hi Chrissy,

    I'm a little out of my element as a fashion consultant, but how would some dressy pants--loose and flowing-- with a blouse and a little fashion jewelry for one. For the second, why not do a ball gown? It doesn't have to be expensive. You could even look at a thrift shop. Might just look and feel good on you. You don't know until you try. ​I take it you don't have a lot of time to put things together. Not sure I was much help. I wish you the best and hope you have fun.

    I assume you meant this for Monica 😛 I have no impending social plans 

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  13. Chrissy

    Just a quick thought on your comment about moving things around for awhile to get it right - that was something I needed (perhaps still need?) to learn, I would go into organizational projects like that expecting that I could make it perfect the 1st time around - that rarely happens, so I had to learn that I was going to make an effort and see how it works, then make other changes until I felt good about it (ok, I think that just turned into a comment about living in general)

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