Thursday, August 28, 2008

Prospecting Your Future Is Dependent On Your Present

Writen by Bill Truax

One saying seems to be appropriate in my business life and it starts with, "if I had only... "It seems that hind sight is truly 20/20. But when I think of all the decisions I should have made or the actions I should have taken one fact stands out very clear. I knew what I should have done; I simply didn't do it!

There are many good reasons why we don't do the things we know we should. For example, when the doctor told me for the 5th year in a row that my cholesterol was too high, I once again assured him that I would start exercising and watching my diet.

About two weeks later I was at a meeting and during one of the breaks a friend said that his neighbor had dropped dead of a heart attack while taking a shower the day before, he was only 37. The next day I was talking to another friend, who said that one of the men in his company had died of a heart attack over the previous weekend, he was 35!

I was 47 at the time and started thinking, "If I had only started that exercise program and diet control 5 years ago when the doctor had first warned me, I wouldn't be so worried right now." So I did, better late than never. (I had a good excuse however, we were out of the country for 32 weeks one year and everyone knows how hard it is to diet and exercise when you are traveling. If I had died, they would probably have said, "If he had only taken the doctor's advice and watched his diet and exercised...")

When I started sharing that story with a friend one day the conversation immediately shifted to a discussion about our experiences in sales.

For all of the training that I do in the art of Prospecting, I am one of the best examples of the guy, who says, "If I had only..."

You see, I have the same problem most sales professionals have. That is the tendency to let other activities interrupt my prospecting. The result is I often get to the point where my other activities start to run out and I realize that "if I had only" kept up the prospecting, I would be comfortably busy, not scrambling for more business.

It is really amazing how often we let the more comfortable activities take precedence over the less comfortable, even though we know that we will suffer for it in the future.

Knowing this I have tried to develop a system to prevent it from happening to me and, being a sales trainer, I want to share it with you.

Business got slow for us a few months ago, because I had slacked off a few months before that. (Just like I had told the doctor for 5 years, I will do something about it, but really didn't).

So I simply began to use our system called Statistical "Prospecting" ControlTM (S"P"C). With S"P"C you simply determine how many people you need to contact each week in order to achieve your new customer goals, and then just do it. Sounds pretty simple and it is. But it does require some organization and control.

We at least have all of the organization needs in our company; the control is where I over extended. My problem was a tendency to be overzealous. I figured that since I developed the system for prospecting, therefore I should be able to use it most effectively. So I decided I would make 10 prospecting calls a day, to new prospects I had never talked with. That is 50 a week. I was doing this strictly by telephone.

Well sure enough, the volume of activity I created very quickly overwhelmed my ability to follow up and I had to cut back after two weeks. I suppose I should read my own book in which I talk about not over doing it, but simply doing a constant number of prospecting calls every week, week after week.

The conclusion is simple, regardless of how you feel, do the things you know you need to do. Pre-empt having to say "if I had only..."

Because we all know that your future is dependent on your present.

Sell Well and Often

Bill Truax

© Copyright 2006 WJ Truax

Bill Truax is a Sales Management and Field Operations Consultant living in Cleveland, Oh. He conducts Sales Team Assessments, Management and Leadership programs, and works with Field Sales Professionals and Managers both in the field and in workshops. He has written 3 books and recorded 2 CD's on Prospecting and Making Cold Calls and conducts a variety of skill based seminars, workshops, and train the trainer programs. Bill has spent literally thousands of hours in the field making cold calls with sales professionals to teach his BLITZ CALL System. When Bill is in the field he actually makes many of the BLITZ CALLs himself, regardless of the industry. This is to demonstrate that anyone can prospect you just need to know how. Bill writes a Free weekly Prospecting Succes Tip for subscribers at his website The site also details all the materials and programs Trufield offers.

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