There is a sandwich company that visits my offices each day, they are like clockwork in terms of timings.
They must knock on each door at pretty much the exact same time every single day.
But there is one problem.
I never see anybody buying from them.
It is not because of the quality of food. I have seen it and it looks really tasty, they have a good selection including fresh smoothies, salad pots, healthy snacks. They have a great range, something for everyone.
The problem I have noticed is they seem to be more concerned with hitting their timings and shooting off to the next venue than they do with actually selling their products.
They knock on the door, pop their head in and (I think) ask you if you want any sandwiches and before you have even responded they have disappeared in a puff of smoke!
It is almost as if they expect you to decline.
There are several interesting factors at play here.
Firstly, they do not even allow the customer a chance to know what is on offer. It is yes or no and often they don't even wait to hear your answer because they have another door to knock on.
They certainly are not in the 'present' which I talk a lot about in my work, being solely focused on what you are doing at each single moment. This is especially important in interactions because you could miss something vital.
This company is certainly doing that. I mean, they don't even open the door fully, they have mastered the technique of opening the door just enough to slip their head through. It's like something out of a cartoon!
The second thing at play is that I think they know who normally buys from them and who doesn't. So they knock on the offices with loaded expectations about what the outcome will be.
Again, not in the moment. In this example, they are in the future and imagining a negative outcome before it has even happened.
If only they slowed down. Knocked on your door, asked you how you are today, made time to get to know you a little, said hello at least!
They could ask you if you have had lunch yet. Then they could tempt you with some of their tempting products by at least telling you whats on offer. This might plant a seed for next time.
Plus, if somebody has invested some time in getting to know you then you are going to feel more compelled to eventually buy from them. It's human nature.
See, you can have a fantastic product, you can knock on as many doors as you like, you can be getting so many things right and one small ingredient like this that may seem counter-intuitive means your performance suffers greatly.
I have thought about telling them but so far I have not had chance to get a word in before they are gone!
What is the overall lesson I have discovered from observing them?
It is so simple yet we live in a world where everybody is so focused on where they are going, they miss everything in between. This can prove very costly.
It can be the difference between success and failure.
You might be thinking that as a motivational speaker I would be telling you to do the opposite and speed up!
But when we slow down and stay focused on the present moment we perform much better, noticing vital pieces of information we may not have otherwise.
You have heard it many times - less is more.
In this case, I think it certainly is.
No point knocking on 1000 doors if your conversion rate is 0.
What about knocking on 200 doors and getting your conversion rate up to 25%.
Think about the areas where you just need to slow down and take a little more time.
Live each moment of your life as it happens.
Be great as always...
Martin Robert Hall - Motivational speaker and mental performance coach