This is a great story that was in today’s Small Business Advocate e-newsletter from Jim Blasingame. I recommend that anyone in business sign-up for and read his newsletter.
The China Egg
“Farm-fresh eggs.” Seeing those words on a breakfast menu harkens me back to when that was a daily reality. But farmers know that hens don’t lay eggs for our breakfast. Consequently, they harvest the fresh eggs each day, and leave a China egg in each nest, which is sufficient to prevent the hens from abandoning their nests and continue production.
There are China eggs in business, too. They’re the prospects you keep calling on who never buy anything. Since you’re smarter than a chicken, don’t spend time and resources sitting on China eggs.
On the farm or in business, China eggs never hatch.
The message I get from this is that your time is your key resource and you cannot afford to spend it on those who waste it and will never buy or do business with you. On the other hand, my brother is a pit-bull salesperson who will call on a prospect every month or couple of weeks in person until they do buy from him. He will tell them straight up “I’m going to keep on coming by until you end up buying from me”. It almost always works – although he occasionally has had to call on a person for 2 or 3 years before getting an order.