LETTER FROM THE PRESIDENT: PLAN “T”
This economy for us FordPros has never been more weird. Never. In the thirty years I have been calling on clients, representing myself as a FordPro, never have I seen anything like it.
I talk often, differentiating my part of the dealer sales environment as this: those retail sales folks are “hunter/gatherers:” they go out into the field, “kill something,” bring it to the desk where they “skin it,” and go back out to “kill something else.”
On the other hand, my role as a FordPro is more like that of a farmer: I prep the soil, talk to the other farmers about best practices (clubs), then patiently wait while a customer/inquirer comes to my attention, I answer their questions as to best solutions. Then they leave (“unheard of in the retail buy-or-die parlance”), then when they are ready, they return and order something. Some time later, when the chassis is here, and the bodybuilder has applied the best solution to finish the unit, I deliver it (harvest).
So here I sit with virtually no inventory; confusion abounds as to when there will be sufficient chassis for the level of demand; what to do?
A couple issues ago, I encouraged you to “Plan: Be.”
Last issue, I encouraged you to “Plan: See.”
Now, it’s Plan: T: PLANT
No matter what needs to be done today, the opportunity is to develop effective ways of “planting” myself, and my products in the minds of potential clients. I am the right person who will find effective, non-pushy ways to help them come to their best solutions. I have the knowledge or I can find the answers to questions. I am patient, although always open to the right time to get their agreement that it is time to make the informed decision that everybody wants.
These potential clients will know a non-pushy provider every time they see one: they are always drawn to him/her, because the purchase is not an impulsive one: it’s essential to their long-term success and they want to be completely confident they are “employing” the right Ford for this job.
Scattering seeds doesn’t get results: not until you have exhibited the patience to continue the work and “let nature take its course.”
They will, over time, pick the best chassis (Ford)…and they’ll buy it from the patient farmer: you!
Now, get planting…harvest will be coming soon enough.