American vice-pres, oil baron Dick Cheney coined a phrase that if a terror attack was 1% possible, then it had to be treated as 100% likely.
This made me think about something that I’m going through with my new sales guys, trying to explain that you need to think of all the reasons why someone won’t sign-up. A classic example was just this morning when one of my guys passed me on an email they sent saying basically, ‘mister prospect, you’ve promised me several times you’d do what we agreed, and now you ain’t, do it, do it, do it’. A better way forward exists I feel. Think of the scenarios that have prevented them from coming through, be sympathetic towards them by offering them up to the prospect with ways to save face and continue towards a signature. Thinking of all the reasons a deal won’t come home keeps you sharp and removes complacency.
Another 1% doctrine, came from how the England rugby team bagged the world cup in Sydney 2003. Coach Clive Woodward decided his way forward was to ID 100 things they did, and improve each of them by one percent. This could easily apply to improving personal sales performance. What are all the things you do? Pitching each product, your company, objection handling every question, writing proposals. There’s loads. Can you raise each one’s game 1%?