Human nature is a funny thing. I read of a study that said 85% of people will drive 20 minutes to buy an item for $15 instead of the $20 price found locally but only 5% will drive those same 20 minutes to buy something for $1015, choosing instead to pay the $1020 they can get nearby. The crazy thing is, it’s five dollars saved either way.
A salesperson might feel the same way if two orders came in. The first order was small but because there was excellent profitability, the commission was $100. The second order was very large, but since it was a tight bid situation, the commission was only $100. While it’s the same money made either way, that big order feels better.
In 2017, I worked with a client who opened over 100 new accounts. 100! That is a tremendous achievement made even more amazing by the fact that he only opened his doors in April.
One of his comments really struck me as simple but true: “There are no small customers. There are no small orders.” When I first heard him say this I thought to myself, “Of course there are! Some of the companies that you pull then will order once and you never hear from them again.” But as we spoke, I understood what he was saying. He treats everyone the same. Why? Because you never know which account is going to know someone who knows someone who works at a big company and will pass his name along. Chances are exactly equal that the small customer, if treated with the same level of courtesy and respect and service, will be the source of a networked lead every bit as much as the large customer.
I think I’ve told you this story before but I once heard Ross Perot give a speech where he talked about walking into a Cadillac dealer to buy new car. But because he was slight in stature and not to mention the fact he was wearing his farming close that just jumped off a tractor, no one took him seriously enough to leave their desk and subsequently, the multi billionaire walked back to his old station wagon and drove home.
There are no small customers. There are no small orders. Treat everyone and every one as sacred.
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