Sales

If You Can’t Sell It – Forget It

There are a lot of great ideas floating around. Megan or Paul will even help you create new ideas. I bet you have a few of your own right now. Are you going to do something about it? Or, will you just let it simmer on the back burner for a while longer?

Whatever you do I want you to know one very important fact that will make all the difference as to whether that idea comes to fruition or not.

You ready? Here goes.

It might be the greatest idea in the world, but if you can’t sell it, you might as well forget it right now.

That might sound harsh but it is a fact. Think back to the last time you had what you thought was a great idea but didn’t pan out. I’ll bet you right now it didn’t work because you couldn’t sell it. You couldn’t attract others to follow you. Sure, people will tell you what a great idea it is but ask them to buy it. And, buy can stand for things like recommend you, help you, follow you, invest or actually purchase from you.

If they say “No” then you need to either rethink your idea or find out if you just don’t know how to sell it.

And, don’t forget – Listen First – Sell Later.

Listening Away Assumptions, Fear, and Your List of Shoulds

“How are you?”

“I’m fine. Never been better.”

How many times a day do you have that type of exchange with someone either in person, on the phone, or in email? It’s already happened to me a half-dozen times this morning. I always assume the initial question is a social greeting and not really a question. I don’t think most people really want to take the time to listen to me – to find out how I really am feeling. And, that’s okay most of the time.

A lot of people aren’t really fine right now. And, they have been better. You might count yourself in that group. You might be wondering if you’re really doing the thing in life that makes a difference for both yourself and those around you. It’s easy to wonder when you hear and see so much negativity around you. However, I’m here to tell you that with over 60 years of experience as a human being, I find that there always will be negative people, negative stories, and those who have given up on making a difference and want you to join them. Ignore them. Run from them.

Running your own business, working in sales, shipping a new project, and making a difference are all challenging not just for you but for all of us. Don’t let the experts tell you any differently. It’s hard work. That’s why it’s called work. But, it can be fun and rewarding and you can make a difference. I bet you already are making one with someone.

But, maybe you’re feeling dissatisfied and scared. It’s good to be dissatisfied otherwise we’d never strive to make somethign even better and scared is normal. You were successful at something before you started this new project, career, or business. What was it about you that allowed you to be successful in the first place? Are you doing what led to that success now? You might be harboring assumptions that are stifling you now. Do you have a list of “shoulds” that are holding you back. What could they be?

Now, please go find a quiet place, sit down and relax and then ask yourself this question. Or, better yet, sit with a trusted friend or two and let them listen to the answer.

The question is, “How are you?”

And, now, give yourself and them the honest answer.

Talk about why you’re dissatisfied, why you’re scared and why you’re worried you might now be doing the “one thing” that will make a difference. Or, maybe how you’re afraid of the idea of even doing one thing.

Listen to your answers. Write them down – especially the assumptions and the shoulds. Ask yourself if you’re trying to force things to happen. Are you focused on the right thing?

And, what is the right thing? I can tell you what it’s not. It’s not:

  • You!
  • Monetary survival
  • Proving something to someone else or proving them wrong.
  • Getting the award, the recognition, the trophy.

Focusing on these things will only lead to failure. I suggest focusing on one thing for the time being.

Focus on providing extraordinary value to the people you come in contact with every moment of every day. Ask yourself:

  • What kind of value can I provide for this person?
  • How can I make their lives better without consideration for my own agenda?
  • Who can I connect them with who will bring more value to their lives?

That’s it. One primary focus and three questions.

And, now will you do me a favor? Will you answer these two questions for me? You can do it in the comments or send me a private email but I promise you that I will listen.

How are you?

What can I do to help you get what you want in life?

Thank you.

Doing Nothing Costs Something

I was thinking about Ben Feldman today. He is a legend with New York Life Insurance and sales in general. If you don't know much about him you can read this or go here.

One of Ben's favorite sayings which has become one my favorites is:

"Doing something costs something.
Doing nothing costs something.
And quite often, doing nothing costs a lot more."

Tomorrow is election day in the U.S. Less than half of us who can vote will actually cast a ballot. There's a lot of reasons people will give for not voting. All of them are excuses.

Voting doesn't cost you anything other than some time.

But not voting will cost you a whole lot more.

Ben Feldman knew what he was talking about.

What If a Party Broke Out In Your Doctor’s Office?

I was sitting in my family doctor’s waiting room this morning when a crazy idea flashed into my brain. Now, you should know I was fasting for the previous 12 hours so perhaps my brain was a bit addled. But, here it is and you can be the judge.

Wouldn’t it be a lot of fun if doctor’s offices had patient appreciation days? Your average doctor’s waiting room is about as much fun as the local undertakers. Actually, my local mortician is a whole lot more entertaining than any physician I know. I especially like it when he removes his toupee or puts it on backwards.

Anyway, back to the doctor’s office. At least once a month, I think they need to have patient appreciation day complete with balloons, costumes, some music (other than the usual PBS stuff), refreshments (they can be of the healthy variety) and some good, old-fashioned hugs handed out by the staff and physicians.

I know you’re thinking this is a dumb idea. I bet you’re worried about catching something from one of the other patients. Listen, as far as I’m concerned, I believe that if you’re sick with something potentially contagious what the hell are you doing mingling with people that are just trying to get their birth control or anxiety drugs?

Which leads me to my other idea for doctor’s waiting rooms – two rooms – one for sick people and one for well. I bet it would cut down immensely on colds, flu and dirty looks being spread around. And, we’ll make sure the sick people get refreshments too. And, yeah, a couple of the balloons. Sorry – no hugs.

Health care is one of the most expensive things we pay for in this country. Doesn’t it make good customer service sense to say thank you to the people footing the bill? And, if you think you’re not footing the bill because insurance is paying for it then you need to make sure you always go into the sick person waiting room.

So, what do you think? How are you going to feel if the next time you visit your doctor a party breaks out to thank you for being a patient?

Trust me, you’ll thank me.

And, while you’re thinking about it, how can you show your customers, clients, or patients that you appreciate them? When is the last time you said thank you? When is the last time you had balloons for them.

When is the last time you gave them a hug?

Image compliments of deltaMike

Too Much Information

I'm finding lately (lately meaning in the last couple of years) that if I don't read something when I have the first opportunity to read it – I seldom get around to it again. I used to save things written by my favorite writers until later so I could savor them at just the right time. But, just the right time is getting to be very elusive for me.

I don't recall experiencing this 20 years ago. Is it because I read less then or were there more moments of just the right time back then? Or is there just so much more information to try and absorb today?

I don't have an answer to these questions.

Do you experience this? What's your solution?

Starting right now I am going to run an experiment and read things right away.

Or, not at all.

But, I'm not going to save them to enjoy at a later time.

At least not the first time.