In the UK, it is said that a general practice doctor sees on average 400 different ailments each year present to them.
A contentious figure. Tenuously stretching out as many conditions as possible which are so close they’d be better grouped as one.
I note their spokesperson I heard also said “see” rather than “treat”.
Then there’s the application of the 80/20 rule. I wonder what such split is in health? You often hear unsubstantiated claims when a particular affliction vies for airtime (“one in four visits concern mental health”, that kind of thing).
So this supposed number of 400 struck me with a touch of the Zeno’s Paradox.
When you break something down you can easily drift off into an infinite amount of sub-parts.
Pretty much every single prospect throughout my career has told me in all seriousness that they and their issue is “unique”.
That would certainly total a massive number of separate conditions.
I currently provide an extra exec pair of hands for salesteams.
Thinking about such b2b environment issues, there’s not that many prevalent. Lately I’ve heard these general six for example;
- we must be on more deals
- we must close more of what we work on
- we must add more onto deals
- we must keep a key competitive threat at bay
- we must break into a new market
- we must sell our new product
A simplified summary, for sure, but ’twas forever thus. From 400 to six?
I’m also reminded of objection handling workshops. You ask the team to jot down the ones they face. You’ll not find more than a dozen. And even then some (most?) are so leftfield, minor or duplicated as to be rendered irrelevant.
So my point is that like the frontline doctor, there’s only a limited number of situations you need be all over. Ones you’re expected to address then and there, without need to consult. Do you know what they are? And how hot on them are you? For only when you can nail them on the spot will you catch your ‘tortoise‘.