My partner and President/Leader of For Impact | The Suddes Group, Nick Fellers, is a borderline genius. Smart. Action-oriented. Authentic.
He has many great lines, but I heard him say this on the phone once and it just struck me as so freakin’ right on in his role as COACH.
“You can’t SCREW UP … if you just SHOW UP!”
While Nick was speaking with one of his coaching clients, I think that message needed to get out to everyone.
Before you can JUST ASK.
Before you can PRESENT THE OPPORTUNITY.
Before you can MAXIMIZE RELATIONSHIPS.
You need to SHOW UP! (JUST ENGAGE!)
Jim Yoder is one of my closest friends (since our days together at Notre Dame) and a former partner of The Suddes Group. Jim has been running/managing large campaigns for over 20 years.
When he was working on a $1.5M Campaign for Economic Development (over 5 years) in a small community in North Carolina:
He spent 3 DAYS …
EVERY OTHER WEEK …
FOR 3 MONTHS …
working on the Funding Initiative.
100 VISITS … 100 SHOULDER-TO-SHOULDER, FACE-TO-FACE, EYEBALLTO-EYEBALL PRESENTATIONS … IN JUST THOSE 18 DAYS!!!
Oh, and by the way, Jim had never met any of those prospects/potential investors personally before he made those visits … AND he Presented the Opportunity for them to make an investment (JUST ASK) in almost every single instance!
I told Jim that 100 visits in those 18 days was more than most Development Officers and Major Gift Officers Make in a year.
HOW MANY VISITS ARE YOU/YOUR ORG MAKING THIS WEEK???
I was re-reading some stuff by Julia Cameron, who is one of my favorite writers, authors, thinkers. (Her ARTIST’S WAY is one of my favorite books and favorite gifts.)
Julia shares a terrific quote from poet Theodore Roethke that fits perfectly into our focus on ENGAGEMENT!
“I LEARN by going where I have to GO.”
“Where you have to GO”… is on VISITS with QUALIFIED PROSPECTS.
P.S. If Roethke is a little existential for you, listen to Brian Tracy, one of the world’s best sales trainers, writers and thinkers, when he summarizes all of sales training into this ‘SIMPLE’ challenge:
“Spend MORE TIME with BETTER PROSPECTS.”
In Suddes-speak: ENGAGE!
I love the magazine Selling Power (mostly just because I love the idea of sales). Gerhard Gschwandtner is the founder and publisher of Selling Power and has had a tremendous influence on my thinking. The subtitle of the magazine is “Solutions for Sales Management,” and they provide a lot of solutions!
I was skimming an old issue (May 2005) looking for more stuff on PROSPECTS and came across this article by Geoffrey James called:
GET OVER IT!
Post-9/11 Everything Changed EXCEPT THE NEED TO SEE PROSPECTS!
(Those are my caps and my exclamation point.)
Here are the guts of the article:
- “It’s never been more difficult to get through to an executive to make a FORMAL APPOINTMENT.” In our For Impact World, we deal with that in a number of ways. Most importantly, we don’t look for a “FORMAL APPOINTMENT”…
- but rather a VISIT!!! ‘APPOINTMENT’ (especially a ‘FORMAL’ one) immediately triggers your synapses to think ‘DOCTOR!’ Or, worse, ‘DENTIST!’
- “You have to do a better job of making prospects want to see you.” The way we do that is making a big, big deal of PREDISPOSITION!!!
- The absolute best PREDISPOSITION for all of us in the For Impact World is to actually bring the ‘prospect’ to where you deliver your service. Let them SEE, TOUCH, HEAR, SMELL WHAT you do. Make it palpable. Make it memorable. Make it an experience.
- “Once you do get in, however, you’d better be prepared to build a LASTING RELATIONSHIP.” WOW! As most of you know, our GOAL with all of our PROSPECTS is to create a RELATIONSHIP … ideally a LIFETIME RELATIONSHIP … and, then MAXIMIZE THAT RELATIONSHIP …AT EVERY GIVEN MOMENT!
The article goes on to talk about working to get a ‘VISIT.’
I love their “warning:”
“Working this system requires PREPARATION and PERSISTENCE.”
I couldn’t have said it better myself.