Saturday, November 2, 2013

!!!! GET IT #### - Primary Reaction Modality – How You & I React!

I commissioned this cartoon, created by an artist friend of mine - as it has a powerful message about those who SURVIVE & THRIVE, and those who do not!

You are welcome to download and freely distribute this cartoon graphic (in a SAFE Portable Network Graphics file format) from here:

In over 40 years of Professional selling to some of the largest corporate buyers in America and to small local businesses composed of single proprietors, I have discovered an inalienable truth!

It is human nature to respond to new ideas – Especially new Technology – in one of three ways:

1) Those who “Get It”, Quickly

·         Thoughts:  Excitement, Wonder, Awe, Envisioning possibility, Passion, Motivation, Driven to share with others

·         Actions Initiated: Searching for potential productive uses, Adopting into current business processes, Rush to implementation, Driven to measure improvement, Gratitude for problem resolution/solution, Viewing a multitude of possibilities

     2)     Those who will “Get It”, eventually

·         Thoughts:  Caution, Hesitation, Evaluation, Cursory Research, Examination of Alternatives, Comparison Shopping, Justification Preparation, Trial, Slow Progress, Searching for a “low/no risk” Exit Strategy

·         Actions Initiated: Consulting others, Watching early adopters, Searching for ways to avoid risk, Postponing commitment, Playing devil’s advocate, Asking for Guarantees, Vacillation, Avoiding decisions, Preparing to “Get a ‘Round To It”… or, as my good Southern friends would say, “Fixin to”! Quick to abandon at first sign of an obstacle.

     3)     Those who will NEVER “Get It”

·         Thoughts: Fear, Confusion, Feeling Over-whelmed, Questioning their own skills and abilities, Change Avoidance, Yearning for “The Good Old Days”, No commitment, Incapacitated, Inaction

·         Actions Initiated: Striving to protect the Status-Quo, “If it Ain’t Broke…”  Watching the world pass by and complaining about the economy, the environment, other’s failings, etc. etc. etc.  Desperately wandering without direction, or stubbornly sticking to the direction in which inertia has led them!

Shame on me as a professional salesperson who always placed himself at the leading edge of innovation (and has thoroughly enjoyed the passion and adrenalin-filled satisfaction that comes from being on the “Cutting Edge”) that I would sometimes react with frustration over those who fell into Category #3!





As someone who left a leadership position - responsible for developing strategy and implementation plans that impacted hundreds of millions of dollars in business within corporate America - for the joys [and Yes, the trials and tribulations] of private business ownership - I also had to go through a “Learning Curve” and sometimes painful Growth Phase in order to arrive at a new level of business maturity.

Along the way, I discovered the futility of worrying over - or worse yet, wasting valuable time with - folks who were in Category #3.  It was a total and complete waste of time!

NOW, as a business owner, solely responsible for revenue generation, I became keenly aware of the necessity to measure everything in my business!

That in itself, brought about the discipline of constantly asking myself the age old ROI question….”Is the action I am about to undertake going to generate a positive ROI – Return on Investment for ME, or Not?”

In most cases I have to admit Category #3 was a trap… a pitfall designed only to have me waste precious resources in pursuit of too many of these “Will NEVER Get It” prospects - who it turns out in the final analysis, were never actually Prospects, and honestly, were hardly even Suspects!

Today, although I am far from perfect at it, I focus on uncovering and cultivating industry leading “Early Adopters”; those who will potentially be converted into my exceptionally profitable customers.  Those who are a true pleasure to do business with! 

TODAY I RECOGNIZE, those highly valued “About to Become New CUSTOMERS” are the ones clearly defined as falling into Category #1.

Category #1 has become my “Sweet Spot” as they are clearly the group of REAL Prospects who will generate the business to maximize my income.  Oh, what a pleasure to have found the way - the path to joy, satisfaction, and profitability - all because of the discipline to follow the basic human truth I have learned from the school of hard-knocks!

Whenever I periodically stepped back from the rigors of New Business Solicitation, I actually always knew this truth, deep down…. I was just way too lazy or easily diverted by the “opportunities” I uncovered through rigorous new business solicitation to FOCUS FOCUS FOCUS on the SELECTION of WHO I WANTED to be my future customers!

In my everyday drive to gain new clients, I fell into the age old trap of asking [and THINKING] who was it that wanted ME to become their service/product supplier.  I had it all BACKWARDS!

Now, I admit, my naturally “giving nature” causes me to spend a lot more of my time with those folks in Category #2 than I should!  I sincerely enjoy helping them and get a great deal of pleasure seeing the "Light Turn On” in their eyes when they finally GET IT!  But, in each passing day I am discovering two more truths:

  • WASTING MY TIME with Category #2 folks is a luxury I can ill afford - until I maximize the amount of business I am generating from the Category #1 Super Stars!


  • The painful and hard to admit fact is that some (many) of those who fall into Category #2 don’t want my help anyway!  Even if I freely give it, they may be some of the most ungrateful people to eventually do business with.  Yes, these are the same "needy/demanding” accounts I was required to work with in the corporate environment.

      Not having to work with "needy/demanding” accounts anymore is one of the huge benefits of having your own business. Acting as caretaker, helping others make more money, sometimes at the expense of forgoing my own maximum potential was not the path I CHOOSE to go down for my OWN business.  
         So, why did I spend so much TIME HELPING those in Category #2 who actually DID appreciate the help?  I have to admit, I did it emotionally, not logically – to gain a simple human emotional REWARD of self-satisfaction and pleasure that comes from helping a needy human being.  That, however does not pay the bills!

Well today, I have found a number of outlets outside my business where I can gain a great deal of that satisfaction - and am doing a much better job of weaning myself off both types of Category #2 candidates… BOTH the grateful and the ungrateful.

This more balanced living allows me to FOCUS, FOCUS, FOCUS on those #1 Category Super Stars.  Every moment I can spend with them can produce an ROI that is 2 to 10 times greater than the time I MEASURED was spent with the Category #2 and #3 folks.

So What really is the TRUE lesson behind the Cartoon?

When I commissioned it, I did so thinking its message was something the toughest prospects could learn and benefit from.  I was wrong!

It is something I can learn and benefit from.

Lesson Learned:
Spend your valuable, irreplaceable time in business solicitation with those who can MOST benefit from your products and services.  You’ll be so busy enjoying those benefits, the folks in Category #2 and #3 will actually just fall off your radar screen.

MY SINCERE THANX goes out tonight to one of those Category #2/3 people who was a TAKER and not a GIVER.

I started out with a resentment, and by writing this perspective, ended up regaining an “Attitude of Gratitude”. 

NOW freed from a painful experience of disappointment with that person who did not live up to her side of an agreement, I can immediately re-focus my time and effort on the spot it should have been focused on all along – with the:

Category #1 “About to Become Customers”!

Thank You, Ma’am - and Thank You, God for the Insight/Discernment!

... I would be glad to help.




As always,  COMMENTS & QUESTIONS ARE INVITED!  Please click on the "comment" underlined link below and then type your question or share your opinion.

IDEA STARTERS to become part of our interactive community surrounding THIS article:

1)   How well do you FOCUS your prospecting?
  • On a 10 scale, 1-3  ___
  • On a 10 scale, 4-6  ___
  • On a 10 scale, 7-10___

2)   Do you CHOOSE your customers or do the CHOOSE You?

3)   Do you get an "Emotional ROI" from helping needy people in business?  Can you provide an example?

4)   AND…. Have you experienced PROFITABILITY increases when you became more selective in your prospecting efforts?
Here is the - "GOT IT" - Blog Post