“Roberta” had to hold back tears as she heard her best friend, “Carla”, bluntly telling her the whole truth about her artwork. Carla revealed the piece should not be submitted to the gallery for an upcoming art show. Furthermore, Roberta was advised to look at the amount of artwork she has been selling versus the amount of money she has been spending to produce it. Familiar with the situation, Carla advised to consider the bottom line and then rethink the business strategies in place.

Whether you are an artist or represent a different type of business, the same suggestions apply. Using the above scenario as an example will provide insight as to how to best approach your business development and improve upon your outcome.

Review your bottom line and associated expenses

Roberta denied spending any money on the artwork provided to galleries for showing. But that isn’t true. The kind of art she does requires color printing and high quality paper. We all know color toner and specialty paper add up cost quickly as do picture frames required for each piece of work to be displayed. There is also the gas consideration for getting to the art supply stores and galleries, as well as the time involvement. Much upfront expense is at stake.

Commitment to continued education is a requirement for improvement

One of the biting reasons Roberta was advised to not show her work is because Carla, an artist herself, believes it to not be of quality work. Roberta lacked class instruction that would improve her craft. Drilling down, it’s not just art classes required but also software and photography on which training is required to produce better quality artwork.

Roberta is lazy about her business not wanting to put in the effort required to produce a quality piece of work that will sell. At the end of every gallery show to date, Roberta has had to drive once again to pick up her work and bring it home to store in the garage.

Reflect on steps that will enhance your success

Are you able to relate to any of these scenarios? What do you believe is holding you back? Once you know and acknowledge the answer, you will be able to pursue a corrective course of action. The major two hurdles stopping anyone is the lack of willingness to admit help is needed, and the lack of motivation to try overcome the hurdle(s).

A burning desire to find success must be present in all you do. Otherwise, it will not be worth the time, effort and money involved to pursue the continued path of mediocrity.

Who do you know that will give you honest advice such as Roberta’s friend? Are you able to withstand the critique? This is the most difficult part for most people. And when you recognize what needs to be done, will you be motivated enough to go out to make the difference?

With motivation and the right education, and upon looking back, it will seem as if you were always on the wave of the Smooth Sale!


Elinor Stutz, CEO of Smooth Sale, (800) 704-1499; was designated as a “Top 25 Sales Influencer for 2012.” Elinor authored the International Best-Selling book, “Nice Girls DO Get the Sale: Relationship Building That Gets Results”, Sourcebooks and best selling, “HIRED! How to Use Sales Techniques to Sell Yourself On Interviews”, Career Press.