Lately, in almost every conversation I have with my father- when I ask “How ya feeling, Dad?” his answer is the same. He says, “Well, you know…while you improve your putting; your long game goes to hell!” Just for the record, my father has never played a round of golf in his 85 years of life and for that matter- neither have I. But regardless of our shared lack of experience on a fairway, his message is clear and with a half-hearted chuckle and a sigh, he will go on tell me how he has to stay focused on balancing all aspects of his health because of his age.

Recently, I repeated that story about my dad in a conversation with a serious golfer. Not only did he support my father’s theory, but we carried on the conversation in agreement that the same concept is true in many aspects of life. For example, too much attention to detail can cause a loss of perspective of the big picture; yet not enough focus on the little things can negatively affect a bigger outcome. Needless to say, this principle is also the case in professional selling.

I often hear sales executives say that they have no time for prospecting because they are so busy servicing regular customers. I wonder if it is really a time issue or actually a focus issue? After all, the more time spent with current clients, the less time available for prospecting, right?

Granted, existing accounts need to be serviced as much as putting needs to be perfected. But if too much attention is paid to business that is already solidified, opportunities for new revenue will…as my dad says ‘go to hell!’ There must be an equal balance of constant focus on the long game through prospecting and following-up or it will continue to take more & more strokes to get that ball in the hole of the close!

Diane Ciotta
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