I spent my early years learning to dance. While my friend went out to play, I went to dancing classes. At high school while others attended after-school activities or hung out together, I went to dancing classes. By the time I was my mid-teens I was having dancing lessons five or six times a week and sometimes even more. This was a habit that continued until injuries side lined my professional dancing career.
This habit of dancing every day was not mine alone. Every dancer, professional or those seeking to become professional, train every day, it’s a habit, it’s a reality, it goes with the job. It is impossible to dance professionally without training every day. Even the stars, Baryshnikov, for example, train every day.
In my late teens a personal crisis stopped me from practising every day. At one of my rare appearances in class, the dance teacher asked where I had been. After telling her what was going on in my life. She said to me, “That’s no reason not to practice. You have to practice every day, no matter what”.
Now that sounds harsh doesn’t it? But she was right. Not training only gave me something else to feel bad about.
When I started my business, I used that same “no matter what” approach to prospecting. I prospected every day. I began with absolutely no corporate connections, I was a dancer, and I only knew other dancers. However I did, know how to prospect as for years my “day job” had been telemarketing. I began to prospect the same way I learned to dance, every day, no matter what. Six years later I have a successful business. Even today I continue to prospect every day, while probably not for as many hours but every day brings some prospecting activity, no matter what.
So how does the entrepreneur, business owner or sales professional find the time to prospect every day, regardless? The answer is simple, put it in your calendar, schedule time every day for prospecting for new customers. At the scheduled time stop what you are doing and start prospecting. Do not take calls, or work on other projects, do not allow interruptions, simply prospect. When your scheduled time is over stop prospecting and go on with your other tasks.
Schedule appointments with yourself to prospect and keep those appointments. We get annoyed and upset when prospects miss appointments so ask yourself, “is it all right to miss an appointment with myself?”
Prospecting success (just like learning to dance) comes over time. In order to keep your sales funnel full you must always be looking out for new leads and prospects. By keeping your funnel full you will avoid the boom and bust cycles that so many businesses and sales professionals experience. To be successful you must engage in some prospecting activity every day, no matter what.