Less Often But More Better

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“There’s a difference between giving up and knowing when to stop.”

–  Unattributed 

It takes just as long to lose a deal as it does to win one.

So why do we keep selling so long after we know a deal is lost?  Why not cut bait when we know there isn’t a fish in this particular pond, or this particular part of the pond?

Unless we sell a completely commoditized product at a rock bottom price, the concept of the traditional sales funnel — more in the top to get more out of the bottom — has been dead for the better part of twenty years.  Particularly in selling professional services it’s not about playing more often, it’s about “playing less often but more better!”

(Long-time subscribers will remember that at The Heston Group, “more better” is a technical term.)

Here’s the math.

Choice #1:  Engage in 20 pursuits with a legitimate chance to win 10 of them.

Choice #2:  Engage in 40 pursuits with a puncher’s chance to win 15 of them.

Smart money takes #1 every time.  Why?

Let’s say it takes a total of 20 hours per engagement to reach an outcome and for the sake of simplicity that we make $2,000 from each win.

In choice #1, we invest 400 hours to earn $20,000 — $50 per hour.  In choice #2, we invest 800 hours to earn $30,000 — $37.50 per hour.

But that’s not the entire picture, is it?

When we get really good at knowing where and when to engage, that extra 400 hours is also investable toward winnable deals.  And the more frequently we only engage in winnable deals, the more likely our win-rate will get better.  For the sake of this example, though, let’s keep it steady.  The 800 hours now gets us $40,000 and a whole lot less heartache, disappointment and wasted time.

Happy people are more productive.  Winning more often makes us happier.  It ain’t just the math.  Playing less often but more better creates a more better quality of life.

You’re welcome!  🙂

Tomorrow:  Storytelling.


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