There’s A Lesson In Everything We Do

Not long after the Christmas holidays my youngest son and I were walking near our neighborhood.  As we strolled along we saw a commercial remodeling project and, being the curious guy that I am, decided to check it out. They were converting an old office building into housing for students. As we went around the back of the project, we saw an elderly homeless man stripping Christmas lights from some small artificial pre-wired trees that the construction workers had thrown away. As he stripped the lights off, a lot of the needles fell onto the pavement. 

A Strange Request

As we passed him he inquired, “Do you have a broom so I can clean this mess up?” I immediately thought, “What is this guy thinking? We’re just two guys on a walk, and it’s pretty obvious we aren’t in possession of a broom.” Yet he asked anyway. He had nothing to lose, and if we somehow came up with his requested broom, he would have gotten everything he asked for. 

The Lesson

As we continued our walk, we discussed the odd request. The more we talked about it, the more we saw the man’s true wisdom. And that, of course, brought to mind how we, in business, sometimes fail to ask our prospective clients for their business. We create assumptions such as, I don’t think they have the money to buy from me, or I  don’t think they are really interested in doing business with me. You might presume that they aren’t in the market for your business. That they don’t seem like the right type to use your services. Or that they probably don’t know anyone who might want to use your services. 

What Do You Accomplish By Setting Up Mental Blockades? 

You certainly did not get a job, or a referral. What would you accomplish if you always asked for the job? Maybe nothing, but chances are good that eventually, that contact will either hire you or tell someone that you are the remodeler of choice, even if they never even heard a sales presentation from you. 

The Solution Is Simple

Whenever you finish a presentation, make a call to action. After presenting your proposal, don’t just sit back and wait to see if they will hand you a check. Ask them if what you have presented fits their needs. Have you fulfilled your side of the obligation? Then it’s time for them respond. If they respond positively, you have done your job. If they don’t, find out what is missing. What modification will make them comfortable with your proposal? 

Make It A Habit

If you make it a habit to make a call to action in all your writings, sales pages, ads, and presentations, you’ll find that your closing rate will increase. Your ads and sales pages will have higher conversion rates. Don’t make the assumption that just because you made a fantastic sales presentation, and that your prospective client is an intelligent human being, don’t think that they will necessarily accept your proposition. Ask them for their business. Make that call to action. And when you do, no matter how slight you may think your chances are, you may be surprised that they do indeed present you with the broom you need. 

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