So, how did this topic come about? Well, when, my sweetie and I cannot agree on, what to watch on television, shark tank is. Default. And, we, we watch too much shark tank. And my favorite shark is mark Cuban. And I’ve been listening to an audio book of his business philosophy. And he says in the book that his favorite business quote was a quote by Bobby Knight.
And that quote is the key is not the will to win. Everyone has that it is the will to prepare to win. That is important Bobby Knight. And that quote was actually the topic of an email. If you’re on my email list that was sent out just a few days ago, but. Quote that I read you is actually a shorter version of a much larger quote.
And I want to read the full quote to you. Bobby Knight said the will to win is not nearly as important as the will to prepare to win. Everybody wants to win, but not everybody wants to prepare to win. Preparing to win is where the determination. That you will win is made once the game or test or project is underway.
It’s too late to prepare to win. The actual game. Tester project is just the end of a long process of getting ready in which the outcome was really determined. So if you want to win, you must prepare to win. Once you prepare to win. Winning is almost anti-climatic Bobby Knight. And for emphasis, I want to repeat a couple of lines.
The actual game tester project is just the end of a long process of getting ready and which the outcome was really determined. And once you prepare to win winning. Is almost anti-climatic and I was thinking of how true that is in the world of, of sales prospecting. Setting discovery calls, conducting those discovery calls.
And I want to give you three examples. So, if you’re a reader might stop you, my books sell the meeting. You hear me say all the time, 50% of the reason why you’re successful is that you call the right list. And, 20% is scripts. 20% is the system that you use 10% is everything else. So what that means.
That if you call a right list, you can be average at everything else and you can still be successful and make money. But if you call the wrong list, if it’s overly broad, if it’s not right, if, it’s just too sloppy, then no matter how good you are at everything else, you’re gonna. And that is, is pretty much predetermined.
So the odds of success or failure are determined to a large degree by the degree of preparation. If you know how to do a proper profile, how to properly segment your list and you skinny it down so that your team, you or your team is really hitting that bullseye. And you’re not working a much larger.
List and have to sort through a lot more crap in order to get people who, who fit your bullseye, the odds of you winning go way up. And that was due to your preparation before you placed a call, sent an email or sent a, a LinkedIn message. Second issue. With a lot of companies that I work with and, much more today than it used to be in the old days.
A lot of companies that I work with who, if we do programs and they start booking. More meetings, they say, Hey, you know what, now we’re not really sure that we’re conducting those meetings correctly and getting, qualified targets deeper into the list. So in terms of conducting discovery calls, or I might, rephrase that as, how you sell the second meeting, because pretty much everybody I deal with.
There are multiple interactions, three to five to seven before there’s a sale. And once you set the discovery call, if there’s no second meeting, there’s no sale. So people often wonder, gee, , we’re getting these great meetings, but we’re getting ghosted or people are not calling us back, or they’re not agreeing to that second step.
Well, so let’s understand what happens at these meetings. So you’ve, spent a lot of time and money to get these discovery calls and now they agree to meet. And on one hand, . You’ve gotta enable your prospect to relate their needs to you. You’ve gotta ask the right questions in the right order, be empathetic so that they share with you what their true needs are and what’s going on.
And at the same time, you’ve gotta communicate clearly what you do, your expertise, your experience, your examples, the companies you work with, success stories, some examples, some options. So the bottom line is, going back to. What’s the number one reason why people don’t agree with you. You don’t give them enough reason to meet, but I would repeat that at the meeting so that if you have a discovery call and people are unclear about what you do well, they just don’t grasp enough to make it worthwhile, to go deeper into the pipeline.
You’re, you’re gonna lose that opportunity if there was one there. There is a certain structure. To that interaction. There are questions that have to be prepared in order to get people to share their needs. There are ways that you’re gonna describe what you do and your experiences and so forth. So my, my bottom line here is all that doesn’t happen by accident. You cannot wing it. You cannot be superficial. You have to prepare to conduct those meetings because a lot happens in a short period of time in order for you to maximize the chance that that qualified prospect is gonna move forward with you. If you are wondering. Great prospects don’t move forward with you or ghost you.
It is because of a, a failure to adequately prepare to conduct those meetings so that qualified people get it and have enough reason to actually look forward to meeting with you again.
Let me give you a third example as to the importance of preparation, predicting results before you even get started. I. A big sorter and segmentation guy. So I believe strongly that when you prospect a group, particularly a new group, you work through them. Hey, let’s face it. We,, some people are, , you discover are worth a lot.
Okay. You wanna call them more. Some are, are worth a little, okay. Maybe you’ll spend less time and money with them. And then some of those are totally unqualified. You don’t wanna. You don’t want you or your team to spend any amount of time with them. So the bottom line is though, but as you make these calls or you come to these conclusions that you’ve gotta be able to segment them into, Hey, this is the high value list I want to call more.
This is the bread and butter list. These are the totally unqualified. And if you don’t think ahead so that your CRM is set up, your CRM or contact manager is set up. So you can put some simple coding in so that you don’t waste. With those who are not worth your time, so that you can spend more time with those that are more valuable to you, and you can spend the right amount of time with your bread and butter clients.
What you’re gonna do is, not properly allocate your time to get the best results. And why was that? It was because of a. Failure to prepare to sort so that you could identify those that you don’t want to spend time with, and that you could identify those who worth more of your time
So, this is just another example of when you properly prepare, when you think ahead, knowing you’re gonna be calling and there are people you want to call more frequently than are more valuable to you. You thought ahead, you set up your CRM so that you code it and you could easily make those decisions.
Productivity goes way up the odds of your sales success go way up when you thought ahead, when you properly prepared. So let’s go back to that quote, the key is not the will to win. Everyone has it. It’s the will to prepare to win. That is important. So now is that literally true in sales? No, we know it’s not.
We deal with human beings. There are all sorts of exceptions to the rules. People are not always rational. We have to deal with the lunatic. Fringe. And if we were in a qual law, we couldn’t say that that was true beyond a reasonable doubt, but it is certainly much more probable than not. That is true.
So if your team is not selling to potential and if your closing ratio is too low, and you’re wondering, why it’s usually because of something that wasn’t. Very early on in the process, that was 100% predictable and with the proper preparation could have been handled to keep that qualified prospect in your sales process.
So I just wanna ask , how do you feel when it comes to your systems and your scripts? Are, are you satisfied with your preparation to win?
And if you feel your preparation is not where you need it to be, do it because as Bobby Knight says, once you properly prepare, winning is almost anti-climatic good luck to you.