Don’t Be Like the Seahawks. Be Sure to Finish

in Closing

Baseball season has just started, it will happen almost daily.

The Masters was just completed a few weeks ago… it has happened there a number of times (not this year).

It happened to the Seattle Seahawks in the Super Bowl.

Not finishing.

That’s the term common in sports when a team or individual has momentum, or a lead toward the end of the game, but then lets it slip away.

And not finishing is something I often see with sales reps: Taking calls to a certain point, then diving off with no definite commitment for a next action by the prospect or customer.

They leave it open-ended, hoping the prospect will do something, but not knowing for sure.

And we know that when actions are not defined clearly, they are easy to blow off and rarely happen.

For example, a sales rep ending a call with,

“Well, I’ll send out that material and a proposal. Take a look at it, and call me if you have any questions. If I don’t hear from you, I’ll be in touch.”

Some guilty souls might say, “What’s wrong with that?”

Here’s what’s wrong: no clear, defined commitment for the next step.

And it’s not that difficult to do correctly. For example, simply saying,

“What’s next?”

“What’s the next step?”

“Where do we go from here?”

“How do we proceed?”

“Who is going to do what next?”

And, by the way, be sure you attach time frames. Otherwise, actions without time frames are simply wishes.

“When should this all happen?”

“Let’s attach some dates here.”

“Let’s go through a time line on this.”

“How long will all of this take for you to accomplish?”

Then set the date for the next call:

“OK, so we should speak again on Monday, the 20th. Let’s get that in our calendars.”

Be sure to finish what you start. Otherwise, you’ll have lots of activity, but little accomplishment, and suffer disappointment.


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