5 Second Mental Drano For Unclogging Your Business Development Blocks
Reading Time: 9 minutes
Let’s face it, lead generation, prospecting, or business development (they’re all the same thing) are not everyone’s cup of tea. It is vitally important, though it can often feel repetitive and lame. If you’re feeling in a rut about it or that you don’t want to do it now, you’ve come to the right place.
Let’s talk about it:
The card above lives inside my Macbook. I shove it into the foldable sandwich that is my laptop the way your local delicatessen shoves slices of corned beef into your Reuben.
It lives there because your author, more than most, needs reminders like this daily. So , understand that any medicine I prescribe to you, I’ve had at least a dozen doses of 🙂
If you can’t read the card for some reason, it reads:
Am I Hiding Right Now?
We find success in doing the simple things that are hard to do.
We hide in complex things that are actually easy to do.
(from the Crankset Group — cranksetgroup.com)
The Real Reason You’re Not Doing Sales, Lead Generation or Business Development
It’s the same reason why it’s easier to admire someone from afar versus chatting them up.
The same reason experiment volunteers, when given the chance, will conform to the views of the group (even when they’re obviously wrong) .
The same reason when the event speaker asks, “Who has a question?” — you keep your mouth shut even when you have 10.
It’s fear. And it’s something we hardly even like to accept let alone admit.
Try it yourself: the next time a buddy or work colleague makes it seems as though they’re struggling with “anxiety,” “confusion,” or “insecurity,” just flat out tell them it’s fear they are dealing with. Simple F-E-A-R. Now watch them deflect, justify, and deny.
But think of small children, those little bundles of blunt truth, and ask them why they don’t want to stick around in class on their first day at a new school. How would they respond?
I feel a bit anxious? Nope.
I’m a little insecure about how I’ll be received here? Nah.
I feel like I’m dealing with confusion about this new chapter? Not close.
“I feel afraid.”
“I want my mommy.”
Sometimes we just want our collective mommies or security — and that’s OK. It just doesn’t help to deny it. To do so only causes suffering.
The Buddhists call this emotional avoidance trap the Second Arrow, from the parable of the same name,
“picture yourself walking through a forest. Suddenly, you’re hit by an arrow. This causes you great pain. But the archer isn’t done. Can you avoid the second one? That’s the arrow of emotional reaction. Dodge the second by consciously choosing contemplation. It will help you avoid a lot of suffering.”
There’s A Good Reason To Be Fearful. Fear Can Be Helpful.
I spent years wandering my own mental wilderness, while living a pathetic existence in Central Florida, USA.
I would get an idea (that seemed great, no, revolutionary at the time) and immediately start to ‘work’ on it. At that time it meant
- Imagining the money rolling in from my instant-success of an idea
- Thinking up a clever (no, revolutionary) name for my website/business
- Creating a flashy website
- Tweaking said site with the latest ‘improvements’ that no one asked for
- Talk extensively about it to my family/myself
- Watching YouTube videos about people killing it in my field
- Looking at the pathetic analytics and crickets in my account
- Getting depressed
- Wallowing in depression while watching motivational YouTube videos
- Repeat steps 1-9 until I shut it down
Sad to say, but in all that time, I never connected with more than 1 business owner or sought out my target market offline (what a concept!).
I was hiding in complexity–and I see it a lot.
The fact is you probably don’t need what you think you need. You probably just have to pitch another person and risk being told “no.” Some of my most successful services are those I’ve sold without a pricing page, pictures, or any written details.
And that is the reason we hide in complexity and lie about our fears — because if we didn’t we would have to risk rejection.
Note: I don’t think any of us are ever permanently cured of this fear. It’s easy to go hard for months on sales leads (meetings, “smilin’-and-dialin’,” speaking) only to build up our ‘reserves’ to a point of (false) comfort. We fall out of practice — courage and boldness are part of that practice — then we go back to the human predisposition to laziness.
Fear makes sense. Consider that “rejection piggybacks on physical pain pathways in the brain.”
That means it literally hurts us.
That said, even though being fearful can make sense — we don’t have to wallow in it. We don’t have to let it best us.
When Fear Strikes, Take 5 – A Phrase To Remember
Good to know you can avoid all this crap, with a simple phrase I’m going to paraphrase from sales expert Grant Cardone,
Fear feeds on time. So starve your fear by not giving it any.
Og Mandino, author “ The Greatest Salesman In The World” repeated the sentiment dozens of times, in the phrase, “Do It Now!”
If you just Do It Now, you won’t be scared anymore — because you’ll be in the thick of it. Strangely enough, Cardone is onto something when he yells at us to just make the call, just send the message, or just ask for the business.
I’ve used this thought process to land deal after deal.
A real example:
- Potential client was referred to me by one of their top execs who gave me the goods (insider knowledge) on their situation — and they wouldn’t respond to my email.
- I tracked down their phone number
- I gave them a call.
- We set up a meeting.
Less steps than the ‘complex’ processes in which I once lost myself.
UPDATE: I’ve also picked up a new acronym from author Neil Donald Walsh of “Conversations with God” fame,
Lookout: Faux Fear Versus Fear
I haven’t seen this written down or expressed anywhere else, so I’d like to share this here and hopefully save someone some unnecessary suffering.
There is a difference between fear, being afraid to do something we believe deep down is worthwhile and faux fear, resisting something we deep-down do not believe is good for us.
This happens all the time, when we have thoughts like,
I SHOULD do this (but it’s soul-sucking)
Example: I know successful business owners doing $1M+ who refuse to do cold calling. I totally agree. Know what you’re willing and NOT willing to do — and as long as you find an acceptable substitute, do you.
I know it sucks, but I HAVE TO
Example: Do some soul-searching here. Why do you think it sucks? Often times our brains could be trying to tell us something really smart that we aren’t willing to acknowledge because of pride and fear. Ever force yourself to attend the same lame networking/cocktail hour/bullcrap fest? Just ask yourself a simple question, “Objectively, does this work? Have I realistically given this enough time to work? Do the numbers support it?” If not, ditch it without guilt.
You NEVER KNOW…
Example: Actually, you might. The most successful business advice in the world goes something like this,
Find out what works — then do more of it.
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