Tend to Prospects Like Bamboo

Farming for sales should be like tending bamboo, the versatile grass that is used for furniture, construction, and dozens of other uses. Bamboo is unusual because it takes as many as three years to final emerge from the ground. Once it emerges, it grows to heights of 30 feet at the rate of one or two feet per day!

If you want to achieve sales success, recognize that the efforts you make today may not reap rewards for months or even years. Eventually the results will come and they will become exponential. The prospect you meet today may not purchase for a year or two. When she finally comes around, she will become a loyal client that buys frequently. The success you achieve might be measured only when the results arrive, but the effort takes place much earlier. And the results will be lasting and exponential, much like the growth of bamboo.

Bamboo is a grass and also a rhizome, the type of plan with an underground root system that, once it has taken hold, is extremely difficult to eradicate. Thus when the plan is in full growth mode, you can rest assured that more bamboo will be popping up all over. The underground root system is spreading, producing the energy for future sprouts of this amazing plant. The result is much like a good prospecting regimen.

The prospects you talk to today are the sprouting clients of tomorrow. The goal of successful people should be the development of future clients. The only way to create future clients is to plant the seeds of growth today. I suggest the follow tips to help you succeed.

1. Keep track of names, phone numbers, and e-mails. You can’t possibly connect with people you can’t contact. Make you mission to store contact information and value it as the “inventory” of your sales future.

2. Keep in touch over time by providing ideas and resources that help prospects succeed before they become clients. You can’t promise to deliver resources and valuable ideas only after your prospects become clients. Thus you should be helping your understand how to growth their business. If you want ideas, see the previous article from this newsletter…”Useless Information”.

3. Keep the faith. Success is knowing that the efforts you put forth today will eventually reap positive rewards later. You can’t see the bamboo being nurtured by the soil, but it is there. You can’t see future clients’ frustrations with existing suppliers and thoughts of coming to your side, but they are there!

Give up your attachment to immediate results and focus on the efforts that produce long-term, lasting benefits. You may suffer in the short run, but your confidence in the future will eventually soar.

You may contact Rick at rickdavis@buildingleaders.com or visit his website.

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  1. I like to think of my list of prospects as a savings account or a retirement fund statement because my experience tells me my prospect list will turn into real money in my bank account. when I do as you say – Keep track, Keep in touch and Keep the faith!
    I keep in touch with the people whose names are on my prospect list (and my leads and customers, too) not just until they buy, but until they move out of my territory or die. We all know we need and must expect a certain percentage of our effort today to result in sales NOW. When we also understand that the seeds we sow now are very likely to produce fruit for us later it makes it easier to tend our garden.
    Great analogy Rick. Great advice for those who don’t already appreciate the future value (and sometimes lengthy process) of prospecting for leads and converting leads into sales. Great encouragement for the persistent effort needed to realize the value of a prospect list.
    After all, patience is a virtue and we will reap what we sow. Paying attention to your garden will pay you back – whether you are farming bamboo or selling windows and doors.

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