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The Discovery Process (part 2 of 3): Learn to Walk Away

September 30, 2015

“Left Or Right” by NaypongLast week we discussed what an effective discovery process would look like.  This week, we will dive into the importance of walking away.

In the discovery process — your first meeting with a prospective client — it’s important to learn when and how to walk away if someone is a poor fit for your unique process.  Not only is walking away a technique, it’s also supported by your mindset, tone, and manner.  You set the tone during the discovery process by being selective in your qualification standards. As you know, walking away is one of hardest things you have to do.   It’s human nature – most of us do not like confrontation and we don’t like telling people no.  Because we want people to like us, walking away conflicts with that desire.

If you never learn to say “no”, you are setting yourself up for frustration and disappointment as well as wasted time, effort, and resources spent on prospects who may never turn into clients.  It is essential that you manage your efforts and focus on prospects with the highest probability of success.

So how do you strike the balance between persistence and knowing when to walk away?

You need to establish a criteria filter – or guidelines of where, when, and how you determine the likelihood this prospect will actually become a client.

The Reach Your Peak program introduces a Prospect Qualification Filter based on three criteria:

  1. Understanding the depth of the relationship with the incumbent agent or broker
  2. Gaining access to the prospect’s management team
  3. Determining the decision-maker’s enthusiasm for your unique process

The Prospect Criteria Filter is built using a signal-light metaphor:  red (stop), yellow (caution) and green (go).  If you get three green lights, go full speed ahead.  If you encounter a yellow light, proceed with caution and perform due diligence before committing time and resources.  If you get a red light, your time, confidence, reputation and money are at risk.  With red-light situations, you must use your best judgment to determine quickly if this prospect worth the investment of your time and energy.

Understand that walking away does not mean you’ll never do business with this prospect.  It simply states that right now, the prospect is not a good fit for you.  Move on to other prospects who have a higher probability of turning into long-term clients.

When do you decide to walk away?

Next week – to conclude our discovery process series – we are going to talk about how NOT to get rolled by the incumbent. Stay Tuned!


This article was pulled exclusively from the minds of the Beyond Insurance marketing team.  We strive to help you live happier, work smarter, and make more money.  However, for us to do so, we need your help!  Let us know what your biggest frustrations are within the insurance industry by clicking here.  Who knows? Maybe you’ll be the inspiration behind our next article!

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