‘Jonesing’ for Some Sales –Farquharson/Tedesco
"But, just as certain is what happens when we stop prospecting: The rock—the appointments, quotes and orders—stops, too. All of that wonderful momentum is not self-sustaining. The only way we can keep it going is to continue making the calls, sending the e-mails and banging on doors. Seems so simple a point that you might ask me why a sales rep would ever change a formula that he/she saw was working.
"That is the 'Doom' part. We are doomed to repeating a common sales mistake and getting lulled into a sense of false security. Our steady selling efforts have resulted in some serious boulder movement. We are busy, perhaps crazy busy, and profess to have no time to make any new calls. And, because sales are up, we tell ourselves that we don't really need to prospect any more. And, for a while, we don't notice any difference: The rock keeps on rolling. The phone rings. Orders are placed. Commission checks are cashed. Our handicap goes down and life is good. What we don't notice, however, is that the rock's momentum is fading, and without any new pushes, it slows and stops.
"Think for a second about your boulder. Where's it at? Are you pushing it on a consistent basis? Or only when you are in a panic or when your sales manager applies some (grabbing his whip) motivation?" Laughs. "Lose an account and you need four new customers to replace it. That is the new mantra of sales. With orders being smaller and less profitable, we are challenged with dramatically increasing our efforts to find new business. That's a lot of constant prospecting.
"When you get in the office tomorrow, picture a boulder next to your desk. Then, pick up the phone, send out an e-mail or drop a letter in the mail. In other words, kick, push, nudge and press that rock until it moves. Do it again the next day. And the next. And the next. And, when you see results, just consider what will happen if you stop. One more thing: I've uncovered the secret to beating voice mail. It's..."