👨🎓 How to clean up deadwood
Heads up: If you're looking for the complete Cull & Cleanup workflow, go here
Crud and deadwood in your pipeline are a terrible thing, for many reasons. Not only does it give you a false sense of the potential earnings to be had in the future, it also causes you to waste time on deals that aren't deserving of your attention because they're not going to happen anyway.
So, let's clean that pipeline up.
The process is simple: eliminate with extreme prejudice.
Look at your pipeline.
1: Pick a lead
Don't ask yourself "what needs to happen?", as when you're doing a pipeline review.
Instead, you want to ask yourself:
2: What is here, that makes this a clear no?
What is there about this deal, that means I should not spend time on advancing it?
In order to determine which deal should be a "no", below you'll see some sample criteria.
You'll need to decide for yourself, but in Martin's world, the moment he sees one of these, the deal is instantly disqualified.
The opportunity is closed in his CRM and marked as "not qualified" or "bad fit" etc, and his pipeline ends up smaller, but cleaner.
- Scope creep
- Mismatch in values
- Sales cycle too long
- Boring industry
- Boring individual
- Client is a taker, not a giver or matcher (Google: Adam Grant, Give & Take)
- Telling yourself that the deal will happen if you just wait longer, of send another bunch of followups
There's more of course, and you'll need to create your own list, but you get the idea: when you really, critically, analyse your deals, you'll inevitably find ones that just ain't gonna happen. And when you do:
3: Close the opportunity and remove the deal from your pipeline.
If need be, set the deal to 'sleeping' or 'waiting', and set a reminder to re-connect with your buyer later down the line, if this is a lead for whom the timing is wrong, but everything else lines up.
Most of the bad deals though, you can safely close them, and instead focus your attention on the people who do qualify, and that you do enjoy engaging with.
Keep repeating this with all your deals, in all stages of the pipeline, until you either have a small set of opportunities you'd love to work on, and then proceed to reviewing your leads.
Or, keep going until your pipeline is empty (yes, scary!), in which case you can start filling it up by using the Mine Your Network for Opportunities workflow.
But whatever you do, and whenever your CRM ends up looking like somebody's attic, you know that you've let crud and deadwood pile up, and you gotta get rid of that stuff.
Your CRM and your bank account will thank you.
Want a custom mini-training on this topic?
Deadwood is a terrible thing, and the sooner you can clean up, the sooner your pipeline will flow again. Hit like if you want Martin to create a mini-training, on the topic!
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