Sales pipeline or blocked sewer?

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I recently watched, in horror, a news item about fat-bergs. Cooking fat poured into sinks binds together into massive lumps that eventually block the sewer. The water flow slows and loads of crap build up.

Just like many sales pipelines. 

My work brings me into contact with lots of people engaged in selling and many of them suffer with ‘pipeline fever’.

This immobilising condition occurs when they become euphoric about the value and quantity of business building up in their sales pipeline. It is a misplaced obsession where the size of the pipeline becomes more important than the flow rate through it. 

Some sufferers become more annoyingly positive and optimistic than their results suggest they should. Others find excuses and things to blame for why they aren’t closing business and guess what, its never their fault. 

You can’t manage a pipeline fever sufferer. They have jedi-like skills in avoiding answering questions and a repertoire of reasons why they couldn’t do what they said they would. Its like trying to catch a startled greased pig. You will always get bored and frustrated before them. 

To tackle pipeline fever you have to understand the root cause; what is the the mental fat-berg that stops sales from flowing through the pipeline?

Every sales pipeline has a unique flow rate. Some move slow and some fast, depending on customer buying behaviour. This isn’t the problem.  The problem is that salespeople slow the flow by not keeping opportunities moving and clinging on to long dead sales.

This behaviour is the result of our highly tuned fear of rejection and failure. The customer might say no and the sale might be lost. 

Tens of thousands of hours managing, coaching and training people has taught me that everyone suffers with these fears, to different degrees, in different situations. It permeates every aspect of business life and affects your ideas, decisions and actions in ways so subtle you don’t even realise it is happening.

Its not worth trying to eliminate the experience of these fears. They are part of being human. Instead, the secret is to become highly aware of them so you can develop better quality responses when they rear their ugly head(s). Because when you deal with problems at the level of the human nature that created them’ you enable huge effortless breakthroughs. You clear the fat-berg and prevent the formation of new ones. 

So, instead of spending all your time and energy fixing problems at the level they show up why not explore a different approach; one that creates permanent performance breakthroughs. A solution that works with human nature rather than battling against it. 

Book yourself into my next FREE breakfast and breakthrough session. Places are strictly limited so don’t miss the chance of learning how to get yourself, your managers and your teams effortlessly creating higher levels of performance in your business. BOOK HERE. 

Alternatively if you are ready for a conversation about what true effortless transformation might look like for you, your team and your results ,then why not hang out with me. We’ll find answers to some of the tough questions that help you to create performance breakthroughs. Book an exploration session with me here

 

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