Medical research shows 4 out of 5 salespeople suffer from the acute disease “prospecting paralysis.”

The disease is known to spread quickly through verbal communication and self-inflicted thinking. Breakthrough research now shows the disease is curable, even in those who feel they suffer from “terminal prospecting paralysis.”

Yes, the preceding paragraphs are a spoof, but at the same time, let’s not discount “prospecting paralysis.”  You know what I’m talking about — it’s the hesitation you have when you know you need to be prospecting.  I know you know, because at one time or another everyone has had at least a mild case of it, and that includes me.

“Prospecting paralysis” is when you either create an excuse as to why you don’t have time to prospect or when you are just at the point of making a call and you stop due to something you’re not sure about.  Within both of these are any number of other reasons, but they’re just lame excuses used to help justify your unwillingness to prospect.

The cure — and yes, there is a cure — occurs often in parallel with the realization that failing to prospect will correlate with a failure to eat.  Not having food to eat will motivate anyone to prospect, or worse yet, to find a different job.  That’s not a cure, though! That’s therapy diversion!

The real cure comes down to first of all believing in yourself and your ability to help others.  If you don’t believe you are helping others achieve a better outcome, then little else will be a sustaining cure.

Second, you must accept that nothing good happens without discipline.  I like to run and I know if I don’t run for a few days or weeks, I will lose my conditioning, and then when I do go out for a run, it will be painful at best. Being disciplined and having prospecting blocked on your calendar and sticking to it will help you exercise your prospecting muscles.

Third, never forget the word you find each morning in the shower on your bottle of shampoo — “repeat.”  Thinking one call is all it will take is a sure sign of “acute prospecting paralysis.”  Repetition is often the best cure. Key is you’re repeating the process of reaching out to the prospect, but each time you do, your message is different.

Fourth, don’t start what you can’t finish. This might sound strange, but the best prospectors are the ones who know what they can handle. If you can’t dedicate the time necessary (see the second point above), then why should you think you can make a bunch of random calls and be successful?

Fifth, don’t get hung up on the little things. Yes, we want things to always be perfect, but in sales that is rarely the case, and you just have to press on with the confidence you will work things out as you go.

Sixth, the last part of prevention is without a doubt the most important.  It comes down to just doing it by blocking out the negative voices in your head, believing in yourself and and believing in the positive impact you will make.

Prospecting paralysis does not have to be fatal. It doesn’t even have to be a recurring illness.  The choice is yours.


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High Profit ProspectingCopyright 2018, Mark Hunter “The Sales Hunter.” Sales Motivation Blog. Mark Hunter is the author of High-Profit Prospecting: Powerful Strategies to Find the Best Leads and Drive Breakthrough Sales Results


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