The writer David Sedaris was a guest on the Daily Show this week and shared the following joke with host John Stewart, prefacing it by saying “I wish I made this up.”
A man is sitting in his living room reading the paper when he hears a knock at the door. He opens the front door and sees a snail on his doorstep.
The snail smiles politely and says “Can I interest you in buying some magazine subscriptions?”
“No, get outta here!” the man replies in anger, kicking the poor little snail off the doorstep and out to the lawn.
Two years later, the man hears another knock at the door. He answers it and there's the snail who says, “What the hell was up with that?”
It loses much without the Sedaris delivery, but it's an apt parable for our times.
When you are a buyer, your perception of the sales cycle is vastly different than that of a seller, as is your regard for vendors. How you treat people (or snails) lingers in their memory long after you have forgotten it.
How are you treating people in a slow sales cycle? Politely telling them you're not interested or kicking them to the curb? How will this impact you two years from now?