In his classic book Think and Grow Rich, Napoleon Hill tells us about a man, caught by gold fever in the gold rush days, who went west to “DIG and grow rich.” He struck gold alright, but the vein of gold disappeared soon after he purchased machinery to bring the ore to the surface. He and his nephew R.U. Darby labored on, desperately trying to pick up the vein again. Then They Quit. In frustration and desperation, they sold their machinery to a “junk man.”
The “junk man” hired a mining engineer who advised that the vein was a mere three feet from where the Darbys had stopped drilling! Because he decided to seek expert counsel before giving up, this “junk man” raked in millions of dollars from the mine.
R.U. Darby, remembering he’d lost a fortune to a “junk man” because he stopped three feet short of the gold, decided from that moment on, to “never stop because men say ‘no’ when I ask them to buy insurance.” He went on to become one of the most successful entrepreneurs in the life insurance industry.
So many lessons to learn from this story! In addition to the obvious lesson of seeking wise counsel before making significant decisions, consider this:
What if you know in your heart of hearts that what you have to offer someone could save the soul of her business? What if you know in your heart of hearts that your services or products could bring her health or wealth or ease or joy or meaning or fulfillment? What if you know in your heart of hearts that you can truly help?
And what if you say, “I understand,” and back away the moment you hear, “I wish I could, but I just can’t afford that right now”?
You’re doing yourself and the person a grave disservice! I’m not talking about being pushy. But to say you understand (when really, you don’t) is to buy into her story. It’s to cause both of you to stop three feet short of the gold.
We are programmed to say no! We are programmed to object! I do it all the time. I go into a store, a salesperson asks me if he can help, and I automatically respond, “No, thanks. Just looking.” Even if I could benefit from his guidance! (Unfortunately, I don’t always say no to chocolate, but that’s another story.)
If you’re in business, you’re going to hear objections. Get used to it. Pray about your response. Seek divine guidance before, during, and after your sales or enrollment conversations. If you innately sense that you can help your “prospect,” then dig deeper. Find out what her real objection is. Perhaps it has nothing to do with the stated reason and everything to do with something else . . . like fear or doubt or some other limiting belief. Don’t stop three feet short of the gold.
Enrich your life. Enrich your prospective client’s or customer’s life. Get to the story behind the story and help your prospect make a genuine, informed decision.
If your prospect is certain that what you have to offer is of no benefit whatsoever, even if money were not an option, then graciously thank her for her time. (There’s a time to press forward and a time to quit!)
Just make sure you know the difference and make sure you scoot your scared little ego off its throne.
Go for the gold. You’re doing yourself and your prospect no favors by approaching life any other way.