When Element brainstormed a fun, new way to engage prospective clients, they never knew their idea would put their salesman Chad Mix’s health at risk. Just a couple, short months ago, Element decided to send out pizza boxes as invites welcoming new business targets to their office for lunch.
“We thought this was a great way for businesses to learn more about us, meet our people and see our space without feeling the pressure of sales meeting,” said Lance Peroutka, Element’s Agency Director who widely supported the pizza luncheon idea. “We came up with an eye-catching dimensional mailer that prompted people to setup an appointment and choose a pizza of their liking online.”
Mix was all on board with the pizza lunch concept from the very beginning. At that time, Mix was active hunter, healthy and very passionate about his career. Selling for just over a year, Chad loved entertaining new prospects at sporting events and on the golf course.
“The world was at my fingertips. I loved making new connections and the fact that Element was willing to do whatever it took to support my new business efforts, really motivated me,” Mix said. “When they launched the pizza luncheon promotion, I was excited that, in addition to all the other job perks I received, my lunches were now covered as a company expense. I knew the more I sold, the more free lunches for me.”
What appeared to be a ‘free lunch’ at the time turned out to be far from the truth after Mix’s health took a drastic turn for the worse about 7 weeks after launch. He went from a lean 170lbs to 227lbs after bringing in 32 new businesses for lunch in just 35 days. It wasn’t only his weight that increased but also his cholesterol which has led to costly doctors’ appointments and expensive high blood pressure medicine.
“In the long run, this promotion has cost us more than just a few cheesy pies. He had the world at his fingertips, but now all he has at his fingertips is pizza sauce” said Mix’s co-worker, Derek Blaszak. “Chad lost all focus when he started packing on the pounds. He only cared about the free pizza.”
Mix, who is currently on medical leave, hopes to return to Element soon. Element’s Christmas promotion, which was set to launch in December and included chocolate fondue kits, is being re-worked as to not tempt the ravenous Mix.