Advice to big companies: Pick the low hanging fruit before you rot


Neglected leads and customers should be the top priority of every business leader.

While the illusion of low hanging fruit can blind new companies to long-term business challenges, most mature companies (the biggest in the world) leave an insane amount of easy pickings hanging to rot on the tree.

Consider that:

  • 80% of all new marketing leads (people asking to be sold something) go untouched by sales people in FORTUNE 500 companies.
  • Dealers for Detroit’s Big 3 automakers waited more than 20 years, after Japanese car makers began devouring their market share, to start opening service departments on nights and weekends, when it’s convenient for customers.
  • When my first car lease was near an end, I received regular calls from the finance company, asking me to buy the car outright, but I didn’t get one call from the dealer asking me to buy a new car. At that time, I leased because I wanted a new car every three years. By the way, that was a Japanese car.

Companies cannot grow by relying on low hanging fruit and managing the little things.  But, heads of young, rapidly growing companies can spawn cancers by allowing cultures that neglect little customers, and other low hanging fruit, when times are good and big fish are jumping in the boat.

If your company is about to take off, insist that people respond to all opportunities, big and small. If a sales lead is not right for you, contact the prospect and earn respect by letting him or her know.  Do not let your employees ignore anyone or any opportunity.

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