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Total Wimp or Too Far?

by Bill Cates

One of my very first mentors in sales, Mark Wilensky, used to teach a concept he called “Total Wimp or Too Far?”

On the far-left side of a horizontal line he’d write the letters TW. And on the far-right side of the line he’d write TF.

He explained that TW stood for “Total Wimp”. In the client acquisition game, a Total Wimp would – obviously – be extremely ineffective. No courage pretty much equals no growth.

TF stood for “Too Far”. Yes – it is possible to go too far with prospects and clients by being too aggressive, talking too much, or being a know-it-all.

Mark explained that, typically, those most successful with client acquisition were able to get close to the edge without actually going too far.

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The problem he said, is that what many people THOUGHT OR FELT was too far – wasn’t too far at all. Their FEAR told them it was too far, but had they hung in there – they would have acquired the new client.

One place people THINK is going too far is asking for introductions. They work on being more referable – which is important. And they might promote introductions, but always come up short of actually asking to get introduced to a few specific people. How about you?

Or… suppose you’re at an appointment where you asked great questions and provided great value that kept the prospect’s interest. But you didn’t make a confident recommendation for the next step. You leave too much of the next step to the prospect. That’s a form of wimping out.

The Damage Threshold

Phil Simonides is a successful leader of financial advisors. Phil describes a similar concept he has termed “The Damage Threshold.”

Phil says, “We often think we are about to say or do something that might damage our relationship with a prospect or client, when in actuality, the point of “damage” is much further away than we imagine in that moment.”

Are You a Total Wimp?

Are YOU a Total Wimp?  I doubt it. Do you ever go too far where you get booted from someone’s office?  I doubt that, as well.   And do you ever stop short of accomplishing your goal because you wimp out too soon?  Sure. Everyone has – multiple times!

The key is for you to become aware of where you might push yourself – without pushing your prospects too far – in bringing great value and confidently asking your prospects to become clients.

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