If you've ever attended any of our presentations, you've heard both Ben and I refer to Self-Activation, a concept that is the foundation on which much of our recruiting platform is built.
What is Self Activation you ask?
Allow me to begin by explaining what it is not. If someone were to call you right this minute, and ask if you'd like to purchase one of their new or used cars, what would you say? My hunch is that you would quickly interrupt their sales pitch and tell them to never call again. Why is this? There are several reasons, but the primary issue is that you have done nothing to demonstrate any interest whatsoever. This is the coldest of cold calls. They are chasing you, much like a predator chases its prey -- the target (you in this case) has never taken step one towards demonstrating any interest in the product.
On the other hand, let's say you drive on to a local car lot, and someone approaches you... Are you offended? I hope not. Of course you might say something like, "Allow me to look around a bit" and then later ask him/her questions. But their approaching you is completely reasonable and expected because you're taking the first step. The first step is another way of understanding self-activation. The act of you driving to the dealership to look at cars is one form of self-activation toward the ultimate goal, purchasing a car. If "self-activation" were on one side of a continuum, the other side would be disinterest, and in the middle would be apathy.
If you've ever tried to teach a child to swim... oh, how important is it to let that first step be theirs! Right? Because if you force the issue, they will resist it for months to come. How to establish the perfect conditions to get them to take that first step, is the primary problem to solve.
In whatever you do, whether it be sales, recruiting, or management...begin to consider how to watch for, and even actively elicit from others, forms of self-activation. Without the other party self-activating, you are stuck in the very weak position of wanting something more than they do. That never works.
So, the question that we continually ask ourselves in order to assist you in attaining more candidates and to build software systems to track those candidates is, "How do we elicit a self-activation from people who have never thought about working in real estate before?" Without going into great detail, we attempt to understand the pain that ordinary people feel, and use this knowledge to appeal to that pain in a way that resonates with reality.
Once the candidate takes the CCI and expresses interest in being contacted, they have activated their "self" to do something unusual and new, thereby leaving the door open for you to pursue them for an interview. Voila! No cold call.
In your work, how can you spend more of your time talking to people who have already taken steps toward you without wasting time pursuing people who are running the other way?
- Identify the pain of your target audience
- Identify the answer for that pain
- Identify ways that you might already have access to that target audience (people you could truly help)
- Identify easy steps that you can take with them with little commitment in each step
- Have a solution that addresses their pain
You might be saying, "...but many of these warm leads seem to resist the very thing that they have shown interest in."
That is absolutely normal and should be anticipated. In the next edition, I'll share with you how to deal with the defense that usually follows self-activation.
Editor's Note: This article was written by Dr. David Mashburn. Dave is a Clinical and Consulting Psychologist, a Partner at Tidemark, Inc. and a regular contributor to WorkPuzzle. Comments or questions are welcome. If you're an email subscriber, reply to this WorkPuzzle email. If you read the blog directly from the web, you can click the "comments" link below.